Timelines matter. Particularly in the world of events, it’s important to have a roadmap laid out before anything else. What are you going to do first? Which partners should be hired? Should you source the venue and then the speakers? And how many months out are you even beginning to think about your event? These considerations are basic for planners. Many of them probably already have a set timeline framework that they pull out of their pockets every time an event approaches! But what about hybrid event planning?
You see, traditional timelines should essentially be thrown out in the age of hybrid. And this can be quite the challenge. Since virtual came crashing down, the idea that timelines can be squeezed as much as possible came right along with it. While we might be willing to admit that virtual events can give more wiggle room to plan within a shorter timeframe, it’s impossible to do the same with hybrid. There are simply too many moving parts, too many aspects that need to be tailored, and an endless array of this and thats requiring unprecedented attention.
So, you might be wondering, what is the ideal time to start planning my hybrid event? Well, the short answer is as soon as possible. And what is one of the things you should focus on first? Hiring a production partner! Let us elaborate.
Hybrid Event Planning & Trust
We strongly believe that the dynamic planners establish with their production companies should go beyond a mechanic relationship. Effort and trust should lead the way, particularly as the industry once again learns to navigate the new molds of events in such a spectacular way.
Hybrid event planning can certainly follow more traditional timelines; however, the stark contrast between what happens and what could happen should be enough to deter you from doing so. Events have always been about storytelling in their own particular way. And with hybrid emerging as the new industry standard, the ability to craft and tell these stories through technology becomes the most important aspect of the planning process.
By going to a production partner during the very beginning of this process, you’re setting yourself up for success. The mechanical relationships we mentioned above simply won’t do anymore if your goal is to lead with creativity, efficiently use and stretch your budget, and have your partner mold to your needs.
Think About This
Let us put forward one of our favorite examples for explaining the importance of a strong relationship with production partners, formed in the early stages of hybrid event planning. Sales kickoffs are some of the most important, creative, and high-energy events companies organize. This is the moment to set up success, highlight, and reward those who exceeded expectations.
In a hybrid model, a production company could suggest, for instance, that you’d just tap the top performers of the year and bring them into the in-person portion. Simultaneously, you’d also want to engage and motivate the other attendees by bridging the gap between audiences. Here, once again, your production company would come in early and suggest the most creative ways to assemble the entire experience in such a manner that the takeaway from both audiences is extremely positive!
No Production Company? Yes, Problem…
The best events are born from the most well-established synergies. It’s no different in the case of hybrid event planning! You, the planner, will bring to the table the vision, the goals, the narrative you want to realize. And your production partner will, in turn, bring the technological context of delivering creatively, and the ability to work side by side with you in order to bring your vision to life within budget, without sacrificing the personalized aspects.
The absolute lack of such a relationship will leave you constrained and limited in what you can accomplish with your hybrid event. It will hinder your ability to bridge the gap between audiences and deliver the truly outstanding experience the attendees deserve.
In Conclusion, Hybrid Event Planning Requires Partnership
There are many common sayings from outside of our industry that can very well be applied to our processes. You’ve probably heard the phrase “the best time to start investing was yesterday. The second best time is today”. Well, let us transport that old adage into events, and say that the best time to start planning your hybrid event was yesterday. And the second best time is today!
And what better way to start than to reach out to a production partner as soon as possible? If you have any questions or are more than ready to jump into the hybrid event planning process, talk to us! The Endless team is here to help.