Debunking the myth that event costs are reduced by going partially virtual.


Hybrid events have become the new norm, but many still grapple with the fact that the virtual aspects of such events go beyond a reliable WiFi connection and setting up a Zoom link. Marrying physical and virtual events requires more resources and effort than most may think.

In the second of our three-episode Couch Convos by BEAM with Petrina Goh, Commercial Director at CWT Meetings & Events, and Kate Sibbett, a high-performing senior event management professional, we talk about setting client expectations, how to find the right platform or technology for your hybrid event, and the cost implications to consider.

Pivoting your live event to a hybrid one can boost event reach and audience engagement, but as Kate and Petrina highlights, there may also be a need to increase the event budget by 20 to 50 per cent.

Virtual events need to budget for a platform, tech support, streaming service and virtual A/V technology. In comparison, face-to-face meetings need to consider the cost of venue rental, meeting packages, food & beverage, accommodation, onsite event crew, and more. This means that in addition to using more technologies, you’ll also need to consider procuring more resources and expanding your event team because of the need to integrate two formats of an event.

Much thought and effort go into planning the attendee experience for both live and virtual participants. We learnt from Petrina that to identify the type of platform or technology suitable for your event, it is essential to determine the top three key performance indicators (KPIs).

Needless to say, technology becomes more expensive as the need for customisation to improve the participant experience increases. Petrina says understanding your audience demographic well will go a long way in understanding what you should and should not be investing in.

Kate also points out in the below video that it is okay to admit if one is unsure of what a hybrid event entails and urges them to find out from the event professionals or agencies to make well-informed decisions and manage expectations.

Watch the video to find out how to manage virtual audience in China, what technology to invest in to ensure connectivity and what contingency plans to make when technology fails you at your hybrid event.

In case you missed it… The cost of safety and wellness at events.

Kate Sibbett is a high-performing Senior Management Professional, offering more than 15 years of operations and high-performing, multicultural team management experience across customer-service focused sectors.

Petrina Goh has over a decade of experience in the meeting & events and hospitality industries. She is responsible for growing CWT M&E’s business in this key market, and creating highly participative, digital and data-driven M&E experiences for clients.

Featured image by lucas Favre on Unsplash

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El Kwang

Author El Kwang

Recognised in his global network as an ideas man who sees opportunities in every encounter. He looks for ways to connect dynamic people from across disciplines to unearth the potential for great ideas to become outstanding. With more than 20 years of experience in the hospitality, tourism and business events industry, both as a content strategist and a designer of immersive experiences around the globe, El established BEAM and built a team of Engagers committed to playing a vital part in ensuring that the world continues to move forward with innovation, growth and positivity.

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