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Planning and delivering in-person events in the wake of the pandemic is a challenge in itself, but it’s integral to what we do. Has the status quo changed? Let us go back to when this all started.

At the pandemic’s start, I was in a different role, doing national and international marketing for school awards and exhibitions. In a matter of weeks, everything changed. We went from planning in-person awards nights for 3,000+ people to trying to figure out how we would get an audience to sit at home and watch a pre-recorded night of entertainment and sit through all the winners being announced.

It was a fear I think many of us in the events industry had, and as the pandemic went on, we quickly saw the impact on our events and our industry. On the flip side, we also saw the resilience of events professionals shine through.

As quickly as furlough came, it went, and we had to make things happen. We had to get our industry back on its feet and show the world that London is still the worlds meeting place.

From adapting live awards and taking everything online to managing covid passports, proof of vaccinations, negative test results. Our scope has become far more than we had ever imagined, but we’ve done it, and we have learnt so much.

Virtual v’s Hybrid

Virtual events became a necessity over the pandemic. I mean, quite literally, there was no other way to make events happen. Still, I have always found them to be a little stale or that something was missing. Don’t get me wrong, thankfully, the virtual events I worked on were hugely successful. In some ways, their accessibility brought more people than we initially thought it would have discouraged. In fact, we far surpassed our targets on all of the events, but it still left a little to be desired. - Who wants to spend an awards night at home?

So why Hybrid events? At a time of uncertainty and hesitance, hybrid events offer a safe solution to both problems. Since the pandemic, we’ve seen a varied response to in-person events and attendance, and all are understandable. Some want to get back to in-person events. Some would rather keep a safer distance until things return to a more recognisable state of ‘normal’. So what is the best solution? We would say hybrid events.

We have all learnt so much about bringing events online, using zoom for team meetings, client meetings, presentations. Whatever it was, we grasped technology with both hands and made the most of it. As we move forward, this is the best way to offer our audiences options for attendance and international audiences; it avoids travel restrictions by giving them access to our events, albeit virtually.

The VSC has also learnt a lot. Our brilliant AV team have mustered on and made hybrid events possible throughout our spaces. We’ve been working with lots of clients to ensure they can achieve what they want to and how we can help them get their events in front of their attendees, we’ve seen great success with hybrid meetings, and our comprehensive event packages offer a solution to meet this need.

As a COVID secure venue, we are happy to host in-person events once again, and our events team would love to speak to you about how we can make that happen. If you’re looking to host a hybrid event, we have the perfect spaces for you too, our rooms are fully equipped with large screens for presentation, video conferencing and have live streaming capabilities and onsite AV technicians. So, if a hybrid event would be more suitable, let’s talk, we have solutions for that too!

To help you restart your event we've put together a Live Streaming Event Package

Author, Marketing Co-ordinator, Josh Lloyd-Hall