What’s next for the events industry?

After a year of unprecedented challenges, we are seeing early signals that the worst of the pandemic is behind us (knock on wood).

Sports arenas are beginning to fill back up, travel is rebounding, and some workers are trickling back into offices.

But as many have observed, life after Covid won’t simply be a return to the pre-pandemic normal. The same goes for events.

We learned a lot over the last year—especially about the power of digital tools like virtual events to open up conversations and communities to people around the world.

Going forward, our bet is that in-person events will incorporate those learnings—and take on elements of digital experiences to create altogether new, immersive ways to bring people together.

Defining the future of events, however, will be a collective project. We will all learn, innovate, and grow together.

And this will all begin on July 7, at Illuminate—a hybrid show that will bring together thousands of event professionals from around the globe.

What is Illuminate?

Illuminate is a first-of-its-kind live show for event professionals to network and explore what’s next for the events industry.

The event will take place simultaneously onsite at the JW Marriott Los Angeles L.A. LIVE and online on the Hopin event platform.

With Illuminate, our aim is to:

  • Showcase what a best-of-breed hybrid experience can look like
  • Give event professionals unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to see how we produced our hybrid show
  • Spotlight the leaders in our industry who are innovating at the intersection of in-person and digital experiences
Register to attend on the Illuminate event website.

Experience a live hybrid event in LA and on Hopin

As the world emerges from the pandemic, Illuminate will explore the events landscape—in 2021 and beyond.

That includes unpacking the opportunity that hybrid represents, how to take advantage of it, and winning strategies and practices for the future.

But, crucially, Illuminate is also about experiencing a hybrid show first-hand.

Alongside the Marriott team, we will aim to demonstrate what a best-in-class hybrid event entails—especially how to craft content and foster audience engagement for a mixed in-person and online event.

  • Live sessions with events, marketing, and community leaders from Salesforce, Pinterest, Gap Inc., Gainsight, and Hopin
  • First-of-its-kind integrated hybrid event with in-person and virtual activations
  • Behind-the-scenes showcase of how we produced our hybrid show—with actionable event production ideas and insights
  • Live, in-person and video networking with 10,000+ event professionals from across the world
  • Attendees will receive a copy of the Hopin Hybrid Events Playbook


Behind-the-scenes showcase of producing a hybrid event

Hybrid is new territory for all of us.

That’s why Illuminate will feature a behind-the-scenes look at how we planned and produced our show—during the program itself.

Combining onsite and online elements involves many moving parts—from registration, badge printing, onsite A/V, and Covid safety measures, to setting up an event website, producing high-quality online content, and driving real-time audience engagement, and lots more.

The behind-the-scenes showcase will help demystify the how of hybrid—by demonstrating one approach to producing a hybrid event.

To be sure, we will be the first to acknowledge that hybrid is a brave new world for all of us; indeed, we don’t have all the answers.

That’s why we will lean on the other event strategy experts who are at the forefront of imagining and realizing the next generation of shared experiences.

Featuring leaders from Salesforce, Pinterest, Gap, and Gainsight

Over the course of a three-hour program, Illuminate will convene some of the top thinkers and practitioners in events today for a series of sessions:

  • Fireside chat on the intersection of in-person and virtual experiences, with Leah McGowen-Hare (VP, Trailblazer Community and Trailhead Evangelism, Salesforce) and Rosie Roca (Chief Customer Officer, Hopin)
  • Panel discussion on the new new normal of anywhere experiences, with Julie Lindsey (Sr. Director, Global Events, Gap Inc.), Scott Salkin (Head of Marketing, Gainsight), and Kacy Ashley (Sr. Communications Manager, People & Internal Comms, Pinterest)
  • Keynote on the power of ritual, with Casper ter Kuile (Co-Founder, Sacred Design Lab; Harvard Divinity School Innovation Fellow; and author of The Power of Ritual)
  • Plus, a special guest (to be announced very soon)
For the full schedule, visit the event website.


Integrated show with physical and virtual activations

At their core, hybrid events are about access and inclusivity.

To make good on that promise, an event organizer ought to craft a unified experience for in-person and online attendees—rather than shortchanging one or the other.

Bringing together 50 in-person attendees and 10,000+ remote attendees, Illuminate will endeavor to do just that.

Speakers will participate either in-person at the JW Marriott LA Live venue or remotely via the Hopin event platform.

Onsite attendees will be able to:

  • Participate in a Covid-safe in-person event with check-in and onsite registration
  • Take part in the main-stage broadcast on a custom-built Hopin set
  • Watch in-person and virtual speakers and presentations
  • Network with in-person attendees and virtual attendees via the Hopin event platform
  • Answer poll questions and engage in the online virtual chat
  • Take pictures in the onsite photo booth and see them in the virtual gallery, creating one shared experience 

Virtual attendees will be able to:

  • Watch in-person and virtual speakers and presentations—all online
  • Network with onsite and online attendees via the Hopin event platform
  • Answer poll questions and engage in the online virtual and in-person chat 
  • Participate in virtual photo booth, where onsite and virtual photos will be shared in one virtual gallery
  • Select and listen to the event in 10 different languages
  • Exclusive engagement with speakers for our digital audience


Join Hopin for Illuminate on July 7

As a post-pandemic future comes into focus, events are poised for a comeback.

In the coming months and years, event professionals from around the world will give shape and definition to what the future of events will be.

With Illuminate, our goal is to take a first step into that future together. And we want you to be there with us.

Register to attend on the Illuminate event website.