In-Person, Virtual, or Hybrid Events? How to Decide in 2022

When it comes to planning events, you have more options and flexibility now than ever before. 

You can host a traditional in-person event, with all of the fun activities, engaging live speakers, and in-person networking your audience could want. 

You can reach an enormous audience (and save on budget) by hosting a virtual-only event. 

Or you could host a hybrid conference that brings together the best components of virtual and in-person events. 

But with so many options at your fingertips, how do you decide which type of event is best? 

To answer that question, we spoke with Lori D’Agostino, President of Momento Events and one of our trusted Event Success Managers here at EventMobi. 

Lori has years of experience managing all sorts of events. She outlined 4 questions you can ask to determine what format will best suit your event and goals.

If you decide to plan a virtual event: Download the free Virtual Show Flow Template so you can build your run of show like a pro!

If you decide to go hybrid: Download The Complete Hybrid Event Checklist so you don’t miss a step.

Question 1: Is it safe and easy to host an in-person event?

Virtual and hybrid events have become popular in recent years largely because of the flexibility they offer. 

With a virtual-only or hybrid event, you don’t have to worry about things like travel restrictions, inclimate weather, or other unforeseeable events getting in the way. If such issues do arise, your attendees will easily be able to watch and engage from the comfort of their own home. A good event platform will make it easy to pivot from in-person to virtual events without causing too much disruption. 

A woman watching a virtual event on her laptop while a dog sits on her lap.

Question 2: Are there elements of this event that are better live?

An example of a hybrid event - the first image shows a mobile phone in hand displaying an event app home screen. The second photo shows a woman tuning into the same event using the EventMobi Virtual Space.

The type of event you’re planning on hosting also plays a big role in deciding between an in-person, virtual, or hybrid event

Some events are best in person. For example, live performances of musical bands or theatrical groups are going to be more enjoyable if people can be in the same room, watching the performers live on stage. 

Beyond performances, some events require a greater focus on the in-person elements. If you’re hosting an event to celebrate a great year in your business and hand out awards to employees, attendees will likely want to be there in person to enjoy food and drink, accept their awards in person, and maybe show off their moves on the dancefloor. 

However, bear in mind that even for events like these, a hybrid option can still help you reach people who might not be able to be there in person. After all, the Oscars are technically a hybrid event! You have lots of people attending the red carpet, and even more watching from home. 

In other words, a hybrid event will allow you to offer some attendees all of the perks that come with an in-person event, while still including folks who can’t be there live.

Question 3: What is the budget for this event? 

Last but not least, the budget for your event will also play a role in whether you opt for an in-person, virtual, or hybrid experience. 

An example of the most common expenses in meetings and events.

In-person events will almost always be more costly, because you must account for things like venue bookings, guest accommodations, catering, and equipment. 

A virtual event will cut back on all of these costs, and allow you to host an engaging event on a much tighter budget. 

A hybrid event can help you save on costs while still offering an in-person experience for some attendees. 
For example, a business could extend in-person invites to all C-level employees, and give others in the company access to the virtual elements through a hybrid event app.

Question 4: How important is evergreen content off the back of this event? 

A flowchart of a Hybrid event.

With a virtual or hybrid event, you’ll be able to capture all of your speakers and presentations on camera, which gives you a wealth of evergreen content to use long after the event has closed. 

In fact, EventMobi’s hybrid event platform makes it easy to create a library of evergreen content, accessible to anyone who wasn’t at the event or wants to revisit certain presentations later. You can also use the footage you capture in your marketing materials, or to promote your next event.

An in-person only event can be a memorable experience, but once it’s over, you won’t have access to this valuable content. If you plan to record your live event anyway, consider live streaming your content to a virtual audience to expand your reach. 

There’s a lot to consider when planning an event, and one of the first things you’ll need to decide is exactly what type of experience you want to offer. If you go through each of the questions above, you’ll have a much easier time deciding whether you should go with an in-person, virtual, or hybrid event in 2022.

To learn more about how EventMobi can help you host a successful in-person, virtual or hybrid event, book your personalized demo with one of our event tech specialists today!