Non-Profit Organisation

The MIND Foundation hosted an exciting hybrid conference with over 1000 online and on-site attendees via Airmeet.

Ishani Appaya
• November 3, 2021
Hybrid Conference on Airmeet
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Overview
Event Name:
INSIGHT 2021 Conference
Industry Segment:
Non-profit organization (Science & education - psychedelic research & therapy)
Community Name:
MIND Foundation
Use Case:
Hybrid conference

Executive Summary

Patrick Wentorp, Communications and Conference Manager at The MIND Foundation shares his experience of hosting a Hybrid Conference on Airmeet.

The Mind Foundation is a non-profit science and education organization based in Berlin. Their main goal is to promote and make psychedelic experiences safe and legal in Germany and Europe. Their work builds upon the psychological and neurobiological potential of psychedelics in improving mental health and well-being.

Patrick explained, “Our goal is to implement psychedelic therapies in the European healthcare system and have exploration centers to provide environments where people can have legal psychedelic experiences. We host a lot of events, workshops, conferences, etc., to educate professionals and the public about the benefits of these experiences.”

Before the pandemic, they had a lot of in-person talks and workshops. Once the pandemic hit, they shifted everything online. They had an in-person conference in 2019, but the INSIGHT Conference, their second conference, was a hybrid conference.

Patrick mentioned, “There were about 600 people present in person at the conference. We had another 600 attending online. There were 60 speakers- 40 in-person and 20 operating remotely. The conference ran for two full days and two half days.”

On finding Airmeet, Patrick mentioned, “Earlier, we used Zoom as it was practical for us. We were all familiar with it, and we only had single events that did not require much of a user interface or a lot of planning. But for this conference, we took a look at various other platforms such as Whova and Hopin. We also looked at live stream providers like Vimeo, YouTube, etc. Once we had an understanding of all the benefits and downsides of each of the platforms, we found that Airmeet was the best solution for us.”


Challenges (and Solutions)

Challenge 1: Providing a great hybrid conference event experience to both the online attendees and on-site attendees

Patrick shared, “We diligently planned the conference around the hybrid format. We wanted to provide our online attendees with all the benefits that they would receive had they attended in-person.”

Airmeet helped them achieve this, and their hybrid conference was a huge success, garnering many positive reviews.

Patrick said, “I think the biggest advantage from the hybrid format was that we reached more people- over double the number of people we reached in 2019. All the speakers liked the conference, and the attendees liked the presentation.

We did a survey where 170 people responded. The overall feedback was very positive, for both the online and on-site experience.”

Solution

Airmeet helped the Foundation provide a great event experience with the following features:

Live Streaming: Patrick said, “Our main reason for choosing Airmeet was that the live stream and the platform were combined, so we wouldn’t have to collaborate with another company for the streaming.
We also provided online access to all on-site attendees in order to make people aware that this is a hybrid conference. And it worked! Many people attended both in-person and online, which was quite good.”

The Design: Patrick added, “We liked the design of the whole platform. We wanted to appear as serious and professional as possible for this event. Airmeet has a crisp and easy design that was excellent to host the conference.”

Customer Support: Regarding the platform’s support, Patrick mentioned, “We liked Airmeet’s customer support very much. It is really proactive. The technical support was very helpful.”

Hybrid Conference on Airmeet

Challenge 2 : Establishing good networking throughout the hybrid conference

Patrick shared, “Our main goal for the conference was networking. We wanted to connect with a lot of other companies, we had a lot of sponsors and a number of people who were interested in collaborating with us.

The conference was also the kick-start for more intense conversations about investment opportunities for both MIND Foundation and its sister company OVID Health Systems. Also, academic networking was quite important for us. We wanted to get in touch with the universities or affiliations, so networking was our main business goal.”

Solution

Airmeet helped them create exceptional participation and networking opportunities through the following features:

Q&A: Patrick explained how they conducted the Q&A during the conference. “We had on-site audience assistants for each session. They were sitting in the first row at the conference with their smartphones, logged into Airmeet, and were always in touch with the online audience.

They asked online attendees to post their questions and handed them over to the on-site moderator. We had this unique link between online and on-site and people liked it very much. This also created a bigger pool of questions to choose from, with a lot of good questions from the online audience as well. I think that was the main part that stood out for us.”

User-friendly platform: Patrick said, “We received positive feedback about the user-friendliness of the platform from our customers.”

Social Lounge: Airmeet facilitated them with a virtual space called the Social Lounge for networking in their conference. The attendees could sit at any table or move across it and interact with the people there.

Hybrid Conference on Airmeet

Challenge 3 : Having a feature-rich hybrid conference experience

Solution

Besides providing the attendees with a quality conference experience along with effective event networking, the platform further enhanced the hybrid experience with the following value-packed features:

  • Quality streaming: Airmeet provided them with HD (720p) video quality and a lag-free streaming experience. It also facilitated seamless live streaming on social media channels like Facebook and YouTube, which boosted the event experience along with the reach and engagement.

  • Analytics report: Patrick mentioned, “There was definitely data in the analytics that were quite useful, like how many people attended the booths and interacted there, how many attendees were there in total, so we could see how many of the on-site attendees also used Airmeet.”

  • Pricing: Airmeet proved to be a value-packed cost-effective platform for their event. Patrick said, “We thought that considering the price and the value we received, we got a very fair offer.”

Way Forward

Patrick discussed their future plans with Airmeet saying, “It was great training for the team to host a hybrid conference for the first time, and I think we will now go on to host only hybrid conferences. We are also starting to host webinars again and might explore Airmeet for that.”

They are looking forward to using Airmeet integrations, such as Eventbrite, for ticketing in their future events.

Airmeet helped the MIND Foundation effectively organize their first hybrid event and provide a great event experience. Book your Airmeet demo today and find out how you can leverage the platform’s features for your hybrid events as well.

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