The trend of sharing events online started a while ago already, and it grew with the appearance of more and more tools that would allow videoconferences, live-streaming, online instant-polling, and so many more.

Soon, pioneers started to offer live-viewing of their onsite event, or even organized the whole event completely online altogether. But it wasn’t until the pandemic that the concept of online and remote event attendance were generally accepted. And one reason for that is that, yes, there are drawbacks to fully online events.

Now, we know what you’re thinking. “Ugh, I wonder why a conference center would say that fully online events are not great!”. Well, while we do see more interest for ourselves in onsite events, we also are a not-for-profit conference center for International Associations. Being a part of the NGO sector, we fully understand the allure of potentially low-to-no-cost event tools, such as online options. Hence, our wish to share with you our opinion of the two options and our proposition for further improving your use of both.

Onsite events, happening in a strictly physical space, gathering all their attendees, speakers and organizers in the same place, generally tend to:

  • improve interaction quality;
  • command full attention and immersion, rendering it more memorable;
  • allow tangible interaction with exhibits and products;
  • promote “infectious excitement”;
  • allow for more captivating keynotes.

While at the same time:

  • being more costly;
  • putting up a distance and/or budget barrier for attendees, reducing the reach;
  • promoting short term travel, sometimes at the expense of the environment;
  • reducing diversity of the audience.

As you can imagine and have probably experienced, as the pandemic forced most of us to move to the online world for a while, most of those points above swap from positive to negative and vice-versa when online, save for:

  • interaction quality, when well facilitated and with the right tools;
  • offer more convenient and easier data-collection possibilities;
  • some of your audience may not have the devices required for attending online.

This is not to say that onsite events are particularly better than online events. Both options are a very good medium, provided that you know what you want to achieve with your event (see our Small Guide to Planning the RIGHT Event to know more about that).

But what if your event was so big and well organised that you were to reap the benefits of both options? That would make your event a hybrid event, yes!

Hybrid events, when done right, offer you the best of both worlds, and can bring your impact to the next level. Imagine your speaker talking to your audience across the world on their laptops and in satellite conferences set up in meeting rooms in Brussels, Hong Kong and Buenos Aires, all from their home office in Australia!

We at MAI can help you bring that vision to life by hosting your hybrid event right here in the heart of Brussels, the Capital of Europe, reaching out to a larger audience.

You will hence take advantage of both online and onsite events :

  • lively multi-lingual interaction with the audience in our comfortable conference and meeting rooms, equippend with translation booths
  • Making your event available to attendees across the globe thanks to our recent top-of-the-line video-conferencing ans streaming equipment,
  • Friendly  networking and catering opportunities in our cosy reception areas
  • Assistance from our professional and dedicated team and technical partners

Need more information about how to organise your future hybride event ? Click here to contact us – We’ll be delighted to assist you in order to make your event a success !