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Creative Ideas for Your Hybrid Awards Gala


As meeting planners become more familiar with all the different hybrid event formats, they’re discovering the possibilities for incorporating hybrid elements into their upcoming events, including awards galas. Our LAI Live team has been busy at work helping clients produce hybrid programs offering a variety of creative concepts to keep their audiences engaged.

Take a look at some of the hybrid elements we’ve seamlessly integrated into their awards galas:

Pre-recorded elements: First used for virtual events, pre-records are becoming increasingly common for in-person and hybrid events as well. We recommend pre-recording at least some of your introductions or acceptance speeches to reduce the amount of people crossing the stage and minimize the chance of technical difficulties when a virtual participant joins in real time during a live program. Pre-recording also offers the opportunity to edit your content to create a more-polished viewing experience for attendees.

Virtual presenters and honorees: If you wish to keep the experience fully live, you can provide a virtual option for presenters or honorees to participate by having them join via Zoom or your preferred video conferencing platform. They can give an acceptance speech or give a brief wave and say “thanks” while being featured on screen. Another option is to have a second location at the event where winners can accept their award in person and the audience can watch on screen. This is a great way to take advantage of an overflow space and have both rooms feel as if they’re part of the program.  

Satellite stages: Consider a unique stage layout to maintain spacing for your honorees. With two satellite stages (one on each side of the main stage), honorees can keep to their side of the room and won’t need to navigate through the crowd to get to a central location. Your emcee can stay on the main stage to maintain a safe, socially distant setup for all.   

Photo ops: With social distancing continuing to be necessary to hold events in most locations, consider using cutouts or LED screens with virtual participants for the photo ops. The cut-out can be an image of the award, a sponsor’s logo or icon, or even a likeness of the person (or people) who would traditionally be a part of the photo experience. You can also try using an LED screen shaped like a floor-length mirror to have a full-size virtual participant onstage. This person can interact with the recipient and still pose for photos! You can also flip this and have your virtual honorees appear on the screen and have their photo taken with an in-person representative.

Watch parties: A watch party is great way to include attendees that would typically be seated at tables in the venue. Select a few watch parties to feature throughout the show whether introducing a speaker, announcing a winner, or just saying “hi.” If you’re nervous about featuring them live during the program, arrange for them to send a video once they’ve convened prior to the event and work with your producer to have the video ready to go during pre-determined segments of the show. You can also have the watch parties share their photos or videos via social media and pull up the social feed throughout the program.

LAI Live Can Help You Get Creative for Your Hybrid Awards Gala

The LAI Live team can help your organization seamlessly integrate creative hybrid elements into your upcoming meeting. Contact us to get started.

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