The Future Of Events Is Hybrid – Is Your Jewelry Store Ready?
By Emmanuel Raheb
Founder and CEO, Smart Age Solutions
When the pandemic hit, it forced the cancellation of many jewelry store events including grand openings, trunk shows, and other in-person special occasions. As months went by, it became obvious that jewelers would have to adapt if they wanted to survive. If customers couldn’t come to the jewelry store, then the jewelry store would have to come to them! This is how online events become common and how hybrid events evolved!
What is a hybrid event?
A hybrid event is the combination of both worlds. You get the fun and excitement of an in-person event, combined with the ease and convenience of a virtual event. While a small jewelry store may only be able to host between 25 to 50 people, you can host an unlimited number of guests when you stream your event online. The cost-effectiveness of hosting an online-only or hybrid event is phenomenal!
With Covid continuing to be a factor in day-to-day life, online events are actually preferred by many consumers, not only for health reasons...but, also for convenience. There’s no traveling and no need to re-arrange one’s schedule, simply tune-in and you’re ready to attend! Also, you control how long you’re able to stay and it’s easy to leave anytime. This allows someone to join who otherwise wouldn’t be able to attend, even if it’s just for 10 to 15 minutes.
In a recent survey, 58% of businesses said they plan on continuing with a mix of virtual and in-person events. It’s hard to underestimate the impact that the pandemic has on every type of gathering. Hybrid events have become the ultimate marketing strategy for the savvy jeweler.
What are the benefits of a hybrid event?
There are many benefits your jewelry store gains with hybrid events such as:
- Increased attendance and extended reach beyond your local area.
You not only attract customers who live near your jewelry store, but you attract their friends and family members who live thousands of miles away! Anyone who sees your event online can attend from anywhere in the world and make a purchase. With increased reach, this makes it absolutely critical that you have a digital marketing strategy planned for the year.
- Greater audience participation and engagement.
With more people, comes more activity which ultimately generates more sales. A larger audience feeds upon itself and makes your jewelry store’s event bigger, better, and more exciting. The more attendance you have, the more “social-proof” you generate which shows that your jewelry store is a popular and trusted source.
- New sponsorship opportunities.
Hybrid events allow additional placements where a jewelry brand or a special marketing offer can be promoted. While at an in-person event you have store signage and printed collateral to use, for online events you have your website, email list, and social media channels. All perfect places to advertise to an engaged and captive audience.
- Additional data and extended insights.
With hybrid events you get access to additional intelligence about your audience such as: who attended, how long they watched the event, whether the event was shared, a replay of what was said in the live chat, and more! There’s a tremendous amount of information you have immediate access to.
- Increased return on investment.
Hybrid events are easy to quantify -- the value is obvious. Hosting services such as Zoom and Google Meet are very affordable and easy to use. Just a sale or two will easily cover the expense. You’ll also be building your jewelry store’s brand and prospect list to market to later. Hybrid events are a win-win for everyone!
Even if you’ve never hosted an online-only or hybrid event at your jewelry store, don’t be afraid to try something new. I’m sure you’ll be pleased with the results. The technology is widely available and most people already know how to use it. With hybrid events, you have absolutely nothing to lose...except the opportunity to grow your business!