14 Jan PLANNING HYBRID, ONLINE AND LIVE EVENTS – WHAT CORPORATE MEETING PLANNERS NEED TO KNOW
As the events business rebounds from the pandemic’s disruption, meeting and event planners enter 2024 with fresh perspectives on venues, services and experiences that attendees value most. By embracing technology and flexibility, planners can create memorable and meaningful events that bring people together.
Hybrid events will remain highly popular given busy, dispersed audiences and virtual fatigue. Providing engaging online and in-person options allows people to participate per their needs and schedules from anywhere globally. Virtual platforms must facilitate interaction using features like breakout rooms, polling, chat and gamification to drive networking. Production quality issues like lags or glitches erode experiences, so robust systems are key.
Sustainability is now a priority. Venues and vendors with green practices earn preference. Strategies like minimized printed materials, locally-sourced menus, and donation of leftover food appeal to attendees’ eco-values. Carbon offset credits to mitigate environmental footprints also matter. Even small changes signal commitment.
Wellness principles get spotlighted to support attendees’ mental and physical health especially post-pandemic. Scheduling breaks between intense sessions rather than cramming agendas builds respite. Healthful, balanced meals and snack offerings energize brains. Yoga or meditation sessions promote self-care. Peaceful outdoor spaces to unwind solo do wonders too.
Cybersecurity preparedness is non-negotiable as virtual engagements rise. It takes one data breach during a virtual event to violate attendee privacy and tank the event’s reputation. Measures like multi-factor authentication, encryption, AI monitoring systems, and response plans for cyber attacks should be confirmed with venues and vendors.
Budgets still require caution with economic uncertainty looming in 2024 and beyond. While in-person events are back, the pandemic triggered lasting prudence. Creativity and minimalism now shape experiences that are meaningful at sensible prices. Event cancellation insurance adds a safety net too.
In the current year, welcoming, eco-conscious and secure events will hit the sweet spot by blending in-person interactions with virtual access. With wellness and budget balance accented throughout, the events unlock more potential for positive impacts.