Events

A Message from President and CEO Ben Erwin

Ben Erwin, President and CEO of PSAV/Encore, provides his perspective on the current state of the events industry due to COVID-19, the impact to our company, the strategic adjustments we have taken, and his vision for the future as our new CEO. … Read More

PSAV® Announces Leadership Transition

PSAV, a leader in global event production, today announced that Ben Erwin has been named Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately, and will maintain his current title as President. In his new role, Erwin will be responsible for driving the strategic direction of the Company and overseeing the execution of its business plan. This leadership transition occurs as PSAV continues to take a leading role in helping its customers adjust to the current environment of the meeting and events industry. Erwin succeeds Mike Mcllwain, who has served as CEO since 2011. “I am honored to assume the role of CEO during this pivotal time,” Erwin said. “We are focused on positioning PSAV for a return to growth and long-term success as we continue to provide creative solutions to our customers and venue partners.” Erwin continued, “On behalf of the entire team, I want to thank Mike for all he has done for PSAV during his tenure and, personally, for his mentorship and guidance to help me prepare for this role. His impact will continue to be felt by our organization long after his formal departure from the business.” “Ben has been an important partner in supporting PSAV’s growth over the last five years, and he has the right combination of leadership skills and financial and operational acumen to guide the Company well into the future,” Mcllwain added. “Along with our full Board, I am confident in his ability to step seamlessly into the CEO role and build on our more than 80-year history of helping to bring unforgettable events to life.” About Ben Erwin Erwin was named PSAV President in October 2018. In that role, he was responsible for global operations, sales and marketing, IT and product management. Erwin was hired in 2015 as the Company’s Chief Financial Officer where he was responsible for global accounting, treasury, financial planning and analysis, tax and product management. Before joining PSAV, he served as Chief Financial Officer for TestAmerica Laboratories, where he led all accounting, finance, treasury, information technology and legal functions. Prior to 2011, he served as SVP Corporate Development for Cornell Companies, where he managed corporate strategy, financial planning and analysis, public market capital transactions, and investor relations. Erwin earned bachelor’s degrees in Economics and Political Science from Wake Forest University. He is currently serving on the board of directors for both PCMA and the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA). SCHILLER PARK, Ill. – August 24, 2020 ... Read More

PSAV® Announces Leadership Transition

PSAV, a leader in global event production, today announced that Ben Erwin has been named Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately, and will maintain his current title as President. In his new role, Erwin will be responsible for driving the strategic direction of the Company and overseeing the execution of its business plan. This leadership transition occurs as PSAV continues to take a leading role in helping its customers adjust to the current environment of the meeting and events industry. Erwin succeeds Mike Mcllwain, who has served as CEO since 2011. “I am honored to assume the role of CEO during this pivotal time,” Erwin said. “We are focused on positioning PSAV for a return to growth and long-term success as we continue to provide creative solutions to our customers and venue partners.” Erwin continued, “On behalf of the entire team, I want to thank Mike for all he has done for PSAV during his tenure and, personally, for his mentorship and guidance to help me prepare for this role. His impact will continue to be felt by our organization long after his formal departure from the business.” “Ben has been an important partner in supporting PSAV’s growth over the last five years, and he has the right combination of leadership skills and financial and operational acumen to guide the Company well into the future,” Mcllwain added. “Along with our full Board, I am confident in his ability to step seamlessly into the CEO role and build on our more than 80-year history of helping to bring unforgettable events to life.” About Ben Erwin Erwin was named PSAV President in October 2018. In that role, he was responsible for global operations, sales and marketing, IT and product management. Erwin was hired in 2015 as the Company’s Chief Financial Officer where he was responsible for global accounting, treasury, financial planning and analysis, tax and product management. Before joining PSAV, he served as Chief Financial Officer for TestAmerica Laboratories, where he led all accounting, finance, treasury, information technology and legal functions. Prior to 2011, he served as SVP Corporate Development for Cornell Companies, where he managed corporate strategy, financial planning and analysis, public market capital transactions, and investor relations. Erwin earned bachelor’s degrees in Economics and Political Science from Wake Forest University. He is currently serving on the board of directors for both PCMA and the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA). SCHILLER PARK, Ill. – August 24, 2020 ... Read More

10 Tips to Present Professionally From Home

We’re all getting used to working from home, and that includes being a part of virtual events and giving virtual presentations. Connecting and inspiring people has never been more important, and at Encore, we want your presenters’ message to be heard loud and clear. While a professional recording studio environment is ideal, there’s a lot that you can do to improve what you already have at home. So next time you’re ‘live from the living room’ or arranging a virtual meeting, here are some helpful tips to ensure you’re maximizing the impact of your message. If you're planning an event with speakers who'll be presenting remotely, we recommend saving our 'Fail-Safe Tips' recap at the bottom and running them through it. 1. PLATFORM PLANNING BASICS When planning an online event or presentation from home there are a few useful strategies to consider for helping everything run smoothly. Using templated slides for introductory information like contact information and employing a script or ‘run of show’ document are two such options. Deciding in advance how to handle Q&A will help you avoid attendees talking over one another. A text or chat only option works well for large groups, while moderator selected unmuting is an alternative for smaller groups. When the day of your event rolls around nominate someone to help get the audience properly connected by answering chat messages. You could even have some pre-canned answers to common questions ready so they can be cut and pasted into the chat box. It can also help to have someone keeping time and remind presenters to stick to their window. 2. OPTIMISE YOUR HOME INTERNET Give your Wi-Fi router space to breath by putting it in ‘free space’ and not in a TV cabinet or hidden behind the couch. Make sure to check and tighten all cords and connections, then turn off other internet devices around the house including tablets and phones, video game systems, smart TVs and streaming devices. Maximise your internet connection reliability by going wired from your router to your laptop or if you have to use Wi-Fi close out all the other apps on your laptop and try to use 5GHz. Wi-Fi typically works best when you’re placed 1.5 – 3 meters from the router. Measure your internet bandwidth to check latency, upload and download speed and if your internet connection is poor, you can chat with a sales consultant to see what alternative internet solutions are available. 3. LIMIT DISTRACTIONS When choosing the ideal location to present from at home, select a quiet space away from distractions and away from others. Distraction is the number one killer of concentration and engagement, so put a “Quiet Please” sign on the door to the presentation room to avoid unwanted visitors. Small children and pets may want to sit this one out! During your presentation be mindful of distracting noises like rustling piles of paper, drumming fingers, squeaky chairs, mobile phone alerts, dogs barking and typing. 4. PRESENT YOUR BEST VIRTUAL SELF Once you’ve successfully removed potential background distractions, all eyes will now be on you! With that in mind, dress appropriately and professionally, so that your outfit does not become more memorable than your presentation. Avoid clothing with sequins, glitter or tiny stripes as they have the potential to flare light on camera, and obviously it’s not the time to wear loose, gaping shirts or entirely forget your pants. When presenting always look at and speak to the camera, not the screen. Have good posture and try not to slouch when sitting. You could even try standing up during your presentation to mimic presenting on a stage but do minimise unnecessary movement as it can be distracting to the viewer. 5. BACKUP, BACKUP, BACKUP! There is nothing more frustrating than when the trusty technology we’re relying on has other plans for us! So, it’s important to have a few backup options up your sleeve during your presentation to keep things running smoothly. For example, you can use computer audio for your main connection but dial into the audio from your mobile phone (but keep it on mute) as a backup. Avoid calling via Wi-Fi to prevent dropouts and have a printed version of your slides with someone else ready to share in case your computer fails. Determine a plan for what will happen if you really can’t continue, such as having a backup presenter on the line, a change of topic at the ready or ending the session with the promise of a recording later on. Most viewers won’t even notice minor technical glitches so try not to draw attention to them. 6. FIND THE BEST LIGHTING If you’re presenting from home there are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to ensuring adequate lighting. In order to light your whole face from the front avoid sitting with your back to a window or you could be cast in shadow. Natural light does have its advantages, but you want to avoid potential distractions windows can bring, like passers-by or pigeons pacing the windowsill. A good rule of thumb is consistency and uniformity – so no dark spots in the room and no powerful bulbs which leave people seeing spots. If you wear glasses, move the light or camera until the glare is out of your eyes. Turning down the brightness of your monitor will also reduce glare. Try testing your lighting with your virtual backdrop and either adjust the position of your lights or position yourself to maintain a good background. 7. TEST FOR CLEAR AUDIO The quality of your audio really can make or break your entire presentation. The last thing you want is to have listeners straining to hear what you’re saying over crackling or dropouts. Look for good quality headsets and microphones which help reduce noise and disruptive echoes. Always use the best mic setup you have available - a wireless phone headset is often the best performing option, followed by wired earphones or lastly your webcam mic. For multi-party conferences, mute your microphone when you’re not speaking to avoid adding any additional background noise. 8. CHECK THE CAMERA SET UP Whilst we aren’t aiming for a Spielberg quality production when presenting from home there are a few things you can keep in mind to optimise image quality. Always clean the camera lens and position webcams at eye level. If you use your hands a lot when you present, even consider framing the shot to include your hands. Choose a suitable professional background, but while virtual backgrounds are available on some conferencing platforms, be sure to test them first. Appearing as a floating head or having half your face melt into the backdrop might not be the effect you’re after so wear clothes that contrast well with the background colour. If you are using a mobile device for video calls avoid unflattering or distracting angles. We recommend using self-view mode to test the angle of your camera prior to the video conference. Obscure camera angles might work for a movie director, but in a meeting environment they can be very distracting! 9. MIND YOUR MANNERS Just like when a meeting face-to-face, it pays to have good meeting etiquette when hosting and presenting online. Be mindful of attendees in different time zones and schedule your meeting appropriately. If you’re recording the meeting, it’s polite to let everyone know ahead of time you are recording and remind them again when it commences. Most importantly everyone needs to hear and be heard, so ask attendees to introduce themselves at the beginning, and if on audio only, ask them to state their name before they speak so everyone knows who is talking. Keep your meeting professional and on track by asking attendees to hold their comments and questions until the end. This will help avoid distractions from people talking over one another. 10. PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT This may seem obvious but like with any technology, testing and rehearsing will give you the best chance for success when presenting remotely or hosting a meeting via video conference from home. If you have multiple presenters, also remember to practice handovers. Fail-safe tips for presenting professionally from home - a summary Know your way around the platform you're using. If you plan on using interactive features such as screen sharing, Q & A make sure you know how to use them confidently. Dedicate your Wi-Fi to your presentation by turning off other devices and be mindful of peak-times when scheduling your meeting such as school holidays when everyone is likely to be online. Remove any possible distractions such as pets, family members, other devices, even switching off email notifications pop ups. Impressions online count so think about your outfit, eye contact and gestures. Have Plan B ready to go if anything fails such as audio, video, if your Wi-Fi drops out or you can't access your presentation online make sure you have it printed. Find the most flattering lighting and avoid any glares from your environment or screen at nighttime. Test the audio and video components for crystal clear sound and vision and optimise the camera angle. Apply the same meeting etiquette virtually as you do in-person - think about introductions, let them know if you're recording, pause for questions etc. Practice makes perfect! Whilst this sounds obvious you can never be too prepared. SPEAK TO THE VIRTUAL EVENT EXPERTS Encore’s reliable virtual and hybrid event solutions can help overcome the challenges of bringing remote presenters and participants together for your event. At home, at work or at a venue, Encore has a solution to suit your needs. Discover our range of Virtual and Hybrid Event Services or get in touch with us to discuss your event requirements today! ... Read More

Encore launches new contactless check-in service

With in-person events beginning to return, meeting organisers are proceeding cautiously and looking to their event services partner to deliver events safely and responsibly Encore recently partnered with the Canberra Region Tourism Leaders Forum Group and delivered their Tourism Advisory Forum for 90 attendees at the National Convention Centre Canberra (NCCC). The group were focussed on delivering their event while minimizing the risk of COVID-19 for industry delegates. The Encore team utilised a contactless, QR code scanning, check-in product to minimise infection risk from close contact with standard check-in systems. The contactless system delivered a fast and seamless experience for attendees while checking in, to avoid long lines and close contact with others. It required attendees to scan a QR code located on a poster or LCD screen at entrance points, which then linked to a landing page for entry confirmation. Attendees took on average just 10 seconds to register at multiple locations! The on-site team at the NCCC also delivered the event in accordance with Encore’s MeetSAFE guidelines which were developed with key areas of focus in mind: event design, room layout, traffic flow, technology enhancements, and cleaning guidelines. Carla Huetter, Director of Sales & Marketing at the NCCC commented, “We feel very strongly in collaborating with our industry partners to achieve the very best results for all delegates trialling new technologies. It’s an opportunity for true innovation as the meetings industry reshapes in the current circumstances”. “The check-in system gave us the piece of mind that attendees would be safely distancing, which was our priority. The technology was quick and easy to use and worked brilliantly. The team did a great job of delivering the event in a safe way giving our delegates the peace of mind that the venue was clean and all measures were in place for social distancing.” Stuart Buchanan, General Manager ACT at Encore commented, “Contactless Check-In worked perfectly. Not only was it effortless in execution, it also delivered in speed and ease of setup, while security on who was attending was easily monitored by our onsite team who acted as VIP concierges, monitoring via tablets. We could see who was onsite and who was yet to arrive.” ... Read More

Encore enables the UNHCR World Refugee Day to pivot to virtual

Encore delivered the annual United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees World Refugee Day gala, but this year’s event was different. It was delivered as a fully virtual event with 700 guests in attendance from their homes and was the first time the event has ever been delivered virtually. The event celebrates refugees and their stories and raises much needed funds for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Agency’s global operation against corona virus. The goal was to raise $150,000 for refugees in crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Yemen, Bangladesh, and other regions in need around the world. It also celebrated the charity’s 20 years achievements and work for those in need. The evening saw a number of speakers including VIP Australian actors Cate Blanchett and Marta Dusseldorp accompanied by Japanese Australian journalist Kumi Taguchi as MC. The brief was to deliver a production quality webcast with the ability to bring in virtual speakers from around the world and enable audience members to interact with others at the event. After detailed discussions, Encore produced the event webcast from their production studio and utilised a green screen showing an abstract background of UNHCR branded to create a professional look for the MC’s virtual stage. From there Kumi Taguchi was able to introduce the event and speakers virtually from their location. Other speakers were live streamed from their homes or other locations. The Encore team created a webpage for attendees to sign in on and to watch the event via the webcast's live stream. The solution also included the ability for viewers to network with other attendees via a chat function and donate, plus customisable web skin designed using the UNHCR’s brand guide lines. The evening was a total success. All the individual elements and presentations worked together seamlessly and the fund raising goal of $150,000 was exceeded. Leigh Zimmermann, Events and Community Fundraising Manager with UNHCR Australia was delighted with the result, “The webcasting platform was fantastic! The team were amazing and made every request I had easy to achieve. They were so responsive. Cannot fault their support and delivery on this event. This online event was a brand new way of doing things for us and it was very nerve wracking hosting something online when we never had before. They helped in every way, allowed us to multiple tests, answered all questions and concerns. I would recommend and definitely use the platform again” Michael Magafa, National Sales Director at Encore commented, "As this was the first time the client had delivered the event virtually, it was vital that we supported them every step of the way and made them feel comfortable. The event was inspirational and genuinely created an atmosphere of community and celebration despite being virtual." Find out more about Encore's Virtual and Hybrid event solutions ... Read More

ENCORE TAKES GLOBAL SPEAKER SHOWCASE ONLINE

It is more important than ever for the events industry to stay connected to not only clients, but also speakers and talent, so as COVID-19 restrictions on live events are reduced, producers are charged with new ways to entertain and engage. We recently collaborated with ODE Management to deliver the Global Speaker Showcase Reboot! for the first time online. The solution utilised Encore's latest hybrid event technology to reach a global audience with presentations produced live from their Sydney and Melbourne streaming studios as well as other global locations. The production team enabled online viewers to watch presentations just as they would in the live environment and seamlessly switched between each of the virtual speakers located around the world. Key to this was supporting the MC with precise instructions and second-perfect production. The green screen was used to show beautiful, unique virtual backdrops and also content for the speakers presentations creating a dynamic virtual stage for the event. The solutions enabled ODE Management to provide a platform for their international speakers to send a message of hope and forward planning to a global audience. The multiple studio solution allowed the MC to introduce speakers from either location seamlessly as if they were all on the same stage. ODE Management created a network of speaker bureaus and national associations, providing the event a truly global audience. Over 2,000 online viewers from more than 50 countries tuned in during the three day program. Viewers watched 12 globally renowned presenters, including James O’Loghlin, Keith Ferrazzi and Yossi Ghinsberg who presented from a yurt in Tel Aviv. Each speaker provided an energetic 15 minute talk delivering a highly engaging 2 hour session over each of the three days. The event’s theme Reboot! conveyed the message that listening to thought leaders, disrupters and futurists is now more important than ever. Their motivating presentations encouraged viewers to strive for greatness and face the challenges posed by COVID-19. The event was a major success in terms of attendee numbers, seamless connection with live presenters around the world and requests from hundreds of viewers for more information. Leanne Christie, founder of ODE was delighted with the result commenting, “Encore was the perfect partner to produce Reboot! They had the expertise, the resources and creativity not only to deliver a live, global broadcast, but also with humour and a level of calm professionalism that kept each speaker confident they could simply focus on what they do best, deliver inspiring content. I am truly proud of this collaboration and know it will be a successful partnership for years to come.” Encore’s National Sales Director, Michael Magafa was equally pleased with the team’s efforts to ensure the event was delivered seamlessly around the world. “The team did a fantastic job of delivering an engaging an entertaining hybrid event online. There were many live elements and they ensured that each segment connected perfectly. The team created an event design with a focus of providing inspiration to the audience, even though they were not able to be in the room.” Click here to watch the presentations. ... Read More

Event Renders Illustrate The 'New Norm' for Events

Encore is taking the guess work out of how your event will look as we return to live events with event rendering software. Right now everything is uncertain. It feels like uncertainty has become the new norm, especially for the events industry which has been struck with the full force of COVID-19’s might. As restrictions ease and confidence grows, we’re seeing more businesses returning back to normal, albeit slowly. But one of the biggest question marks is what does that look like for events? With social distancing measures in place, capacity limitations, strict new hygiene measures and all sorts of tracing and detection devices being rolled out there’s a lot of unknowns for how events are supposed to look or run. Well, what if we said there’s a way to see what your event will look like, down to the colour of your napkins? Enter, 3D rendering. At Encore, we’ve found our clients have benefited from seeing a life-like render of how their event will look, giving them confidence and reassurance that still with COVID measures in place, the event will achieve its goals and ROI. >> These sound great, I want to find out more! 3D Render of Small Hybrid Boardroom Meeting with Social Distancing Applied. What is 3D rendering for events? 3D rendering is the process of using graphics software to convert 3D models into 2D images on a computer. 3D renders may include photorealistic effects or non-photorealistic styles. Thanks to advances in technology and hours of practice, 3D renders can be highly detailed including textures, styling elements such as florals, lighting hues and even include a variety of people in action. What events can be pre-visualised using rendering software? Renders are predominantly used to pre-visualise larger and more complex events with special concepts. These of course can be any type of event. From conferences to boardroom meetings, award nights and even large scale tradeshows - Encore’s in-house design team have developed an expertise for creating realistic event renders. In fact, we’ve even taken it further to create 3D rendered videos which we fondly call ‘fly-throughs’. As the name suggests, these videos give viewers the perspective as if they’re 'flying' through the space which we can set the height level. It’s incredible to see the level of detail captured in the renders and allows the event planners to navigate around the room and explore the event design from every angle. Fly-through 3D render of a corporate event with MeetSAFE guidelines applied to cabaret seating. “When we have a large event with lots of elements or a concept that needs visualisation, our 3D renders help explain our vision. During the design process they allow me to really investigate how different elements will fit into the event landscape. I can move elements around, look at it from every angle, try different colour combinations and work through all the possibilities that my imagination can dream up,” Encore’s Lead Designer, Georgia. View renders via a 360 Degree Virtual Tour Similar to how property inspections are allowing virtual tours, we can even stitch together still images of the renders so you can enjoy a 360 tour of the event or venue. We’ve found these 360 Virtual Tours offer a lot of benefits over the video ‘fly-throughs’ as they offer a level of interaction and we can load several options of renders to choose from with seating styles, lighting options, as well as different parts or stages of the event. As they’re accessible via a link, they’re also easily shareable without the need to download huge files to view. On the upper left-hand side of the screen, we can load several options for you to experience in 360 degree. Here's an example of a 360 Degree Virtual Tour of a Conference we mocked up. Click here to experience the 360 Virtual Tour Online Visualising social distancing for events with rendering software and our MeetSAFE guidelines Encore lead the way in the return to live events by producing MeetSAFE, a comprehensive set of guidelines which addressed the restrictions regarding social distancing and healthy work practices to ensure event attendees are safe. These guidelines were provided to our venue partners to give them the confidence that events at their venue will be delivered to the highest safety standards. Depending on the event’s concept or requirements, our teams can produce a rendered image or even a 3D video of how the stage, seating, distancing and directional flow will look while complying to the guidelines. 3D Render of conference with theatre style seating showing application of MeetSAFE's traffic flow and social distancing guidelines. For a large conference for example, we have the ability to create a render showing sufficient social distancing in place when seating is arranged theatre style. Our teams can even render a conference split into multiple breakout rooms with live streamed presentations to ensure all of the intended audience can view via multiple locations. For a gala dinner with several elements or a really unique stage look, our teams can help the event planner visualise the event via an illustration of the floor plan layout with adequate distancing, guests per table and how the directional flow of the room will work. When the concept is complex, we found event planners gained peace of mind from these guidelines and practices, but benefited even more with the knowledge of how their event would look with the safe practices in place. This can be a great selling tool for when event planners need to showcase their event vision to clients or managers who need a little more help visualising the idea. Our venue partners also benefited in that they could be confident in how the practices would work at their venue and that the Encore team could deliver seamless, safe events at any event space in their hotel. Help deciding on the perfect venue Only 16-percent of event planners say they’re “extremely certain” of their venue when they begin the planning process, according to the latest Global Planner Sourcing Report from Cvent. This stat means the vast majority of planners face a time-consuming process of evaluating proposals and visiting venues for fly-throughs. In this new COVID world, this can be time-consuming task. Encore has been busy working towards creating an entire library of content of our venue partner spaces including floor pans, renders and fly-throughs, and even 360 photos. This allows event planners to explore and review numerous venues from the comfort of their office. Whilst pre-visualisation content will never replace actually seeing and experiencing the space in person, they are the next best thing. 3D render fly-through showing social distancing applied to small hybrid boardroom style meeting. Experts in 3D event rendering images and videos As we return to in-person and hybrid events, event planners may find it difficult to visualise how their event will look. The new normal means reduced numbers of attendees, physical distancing, directional instructions for moving around a room and many other measures. Rather than tell you our idea, let us show you. Encore has been perfecting our event rendering techniques over the past few years and have come to master the creation of rendered images as well as ‘fly-throughs’. Visit our event rendering page to register your interest and find out more. ... Read More

The Show Must Go On - Jeans for Genes Gala Goes Virtual

Despite many events being cancelled due to COVID19 restrictions, this year’s coveted Jean for Genes Gala powered on with Encore Event Technologies taking the fundraiser purely online on Saturday 20th June. The challenge for the Encore team was delivering an event that lived up to its fun and glamorous reputation whilst also facilitating interaction for the purpose of raising funds with hundreds of guests of Children’s Medical Research Institute. Encore hosted the event from our broadcasting studio in Sydney. The technical teams built a custom stage set with an LED wall, feature lighting and leveraged their green screen to create different set looks to enhance presentations as well as the performances by soloist Ace Avenue and the four-piece band Jellybean Jam. The green screen displayed multimedia themed to the event showing DNA graphics and the event’s signature denim. The virtual fundraising event was delivered via Encore Connect, a live video conferencing solution, which enabled viewers to watch the various live presentations, speakers and performances. The platform also enabled live streaming of videos from families affected by childhood genetic diseases who are at the heart of the charity’s research and the Jeans for Genes campaign. Pre-recorded videos highlighting the Institute’s work were also incorporated as well as a fun cocktail-making recipe in the theme of the night. The variety show style event also included live Q&A sessions with the organisation’s families as well as research leaders from the Institute. Children’s Medical Research Institute’s Acting Head of Fundraising Jane Ruston said the charity’s scientists were known for their ability to adapt and innovate so it was vital that the rest of the team did the same. “As well as being a fundraising event, the Jeans for Genes Gala is a way for our CMRI community of supporters across Australia to connect with our scientists and hear about their incredible research, as well as an opportunity to meet the families whose children live with genetic disease every day and to understand why their support is so vital. “We were so grateful that Encore were able to connect all CMRI community so that they could feel safe, comfortable and confident that our work would continue in such challenging times. “All our supporters commented on what a fantastic night it was and that’s because of the hard work that was done behind-the-scenes by the Encore team.’’ Encore’s National Sales Director, Michael Magafa was delighted with the team’s efforts to ensure the important fundraiser could still continue and commented, “The team did a fantastic job of creating an engaging and entertaining event online. There were many live and recorded elements and they ensured that each element was delivered seamlessly. The LED screen created a live performance feel you’d experience at a live concert.” The event raised more than $70,000 for children’s medical research. Find out more about our virtual and hybrid event solutions Encore has released a complete virtual suite of new products and solutions to help you deliver successful virtual and hybrid events. From video conferencing for boardroom meetings, to polished webinars and totally customised webcasts - we can tailor our solution to meet your audience size, budget and complexities. Explore our range of solutions today. ... Read More

Your roadmap for delivering a successful virtual event seamlessly

A virtual event is any organised meet-up that takes place online rather than in a physical location. These events can range from small meeting to a large-scale conference with thousands of attendees. There can be a plethora of ways to take your event online and there can be a number of pitfalls which you can fall into. We’ve developed this overview of tips, tricks and technologies for delivering your online event successfully. Start with a plan As with any event, your plan is vital for success. Start by asking yourself some key questions: Will the event be live, on-demand, or both? Will access be gated or free? When is the best time for the event? Will I require event registration? How will you promote the event and when will you start? Do you require attendee engagement, two-way communication or polling? Where will the event be filmed, in a production studio? Will there be remote presenters? Are they local? What time zone are they in? Do you plan to work with a sponsor or other partner? Do you want people still have access to a recording of the event once it’s over? What analytics and data do you want to track? Choose the date and time carefully Picking the right date and time for your event is important, particularly if you’re hosting it live. Before sending out your invitations make sure the date doesn’t clash with public holidays, if attendees are likely to be international find a time that will enable them to come that’s not in the middle of the night or on a weekend. For global events where it’s not possible to find a time to suit everyone, make sure the content is available after the event for those who couldn’t make it. Many virtual and hybrid solutions from basic video conferencing to webinars and professional webcasts have recording capabilities. Remember, if you’re hosting a smaller virtual event or one where attendees may participate n the discussion it’s best practice to notify everyone that you’re recording the session. If you want more tips on hosting a virtual event read our article Top 10 Tips For Effective Video Conferencing. Have a professional design for your virtual website and communications If you want your event to be perceived as professional, it needs to look professional and provide a good user experience. This includes everything from the registration page, payment page (and process), content pages, presenter bio pages and graphics. Most streaming platforms offer customisation and branding such as logos and brand colours as well as sponsorship exposure opportunities. Encore’s webcast solution delivers a complete branded experience online that can look as an extension of your brand or totally customised to suit your event. Promote the event Obviously you need to let people know the event is happening, but the way you promote it is key to getting people to register or purchase tickets. Why should they attend? Who’s speaking? What will they learn? Make sure the benefits and ROI are clear during your promotions. Share the event details by email, advertisements and social media. Choose your media carefully to make sure you reach your audience. If you’re working with an event partner or sponsor, ask them to promote the event too and ask presenters to promote the event via their channels. The more noise you make collectively, the more people you’ll reach. Carefully plan a timetable for your communications and ramp it up as you near the event date, most registrations and sales happen closer to the deadline. Word of mouth provides a great opportunity to grow your audience. Offer last year’s attendees a promotional offer if they bring a colleague. Other promotional offers include early-bird rates and special prices for group bookings. Drive revenue with sponsorship As your audience potential grows exponentially now that time and distance are redundant, your event with its millions of eyeballs, can become a very attractive sponsorship opportunity to the right brand. Sponsorship can be an efficient revenue stream to further increase the ROI of your event. Sponsorship has other benefits too, such as building positive associations with companies that share your values or purely providing your audience with the entertainment factor as sponsors get creative with their valuable placements. We all watch the Superbowl for the ads right? A key benefit to online sponsorship over traditional sponsorship like physical banners and event announcements is the opportunity to demonstrate the benefit to your sponsor via digital data reporting. Other sponsorship deals also allow you to share the customer data with them such as registration details for their own marketing purposes. From branded elements on the event’s website to in-stream callouts and segments and digital swag bags, we’ve shared 10 virtual event sponsorship tactics to help drive revenue. Guard against technical issues There’s nothing worse than after all your hard work viewers can’t get access, see a buffering window, glitchy audio, sites crash or registrations max out. Choose a reputable event technology company with lots of experience delivering the kind of event you need. Make sure they’re there in the lead up to the event and on the day to make sure everyone runs smoothly and any technical difficulties resolved quickly. Adequate band width is important for your remote presenters, in your studio and for attendees. There may be nothing you can do if online viewer internet is poor, but if they have paid to attend a live event and can’t it’s good to have a record as back up which they can watch when they have better internet access. If possible, run a rehearsal. Make sure switching between presenters, slides videos etc. is seamless. Encore’s range of virtual solutions provides virtual stage management to ensure each speaker’s presentation is optimised and helps direct the overall flow of the virtual event. Interactivity and engagement Activities that allow your attendees to get involved are powerful. They increase learning, recall of your content and increase attention and are likely to keep them coming back if the experience was positive. There are many ways you can achieve this. Q&As are a great way to involve your viewers and they have the added benefit f enabling your to cover content that attendees really want to know about. Live polling is another great way to get attendees engaged and also be part of the event, they can vote and even post questions, plus the results of polls and surveys can be shown live on screen to generate further discussion. Our Chime Live streaming app is feature-rich and designed to keep engagement levels during a virtual or hybrid event. Measure all available analytics Measuring your event serves a number of benefits. You can demonstrate return on investment to stakeholders and sponsors to show how many viewers attended, how many more viewers attended on last year, how long they watched for, which sessions they watch, how much exposure they got, etc. It’s obviously great for sponsors to show exposure to their brand, clicks to their site and so on. There are so many valuable insights available from online event data, including number of people opening and clicking on your email, how many people who went to the site for more info actually registered, how users came to your site – email versus social media, partner promotions etc.. Follow-up survey You won’t know what your online audiences experience was of your event unless you ask! A post-event survey I a great way to get feedback on your event, find out if they had technical issues on the day or during registration. You can use longer comments as promotional tools for next year’s event as testimonials on your website and communications. You can increase the number of replies by offering a prize this might be an industry book through to a more premium gift such as a night in a five star hotel. The responses from your survey are another great way to demonstrate return on investment to your stakeholders with data such as 95% of responders said they were delighted with the event, would recommend the event to a colleague, would attend next year. Partner with the experts in virtual events There are many different pathways to a successful online event. However, they all start with taking that first step. Encore has helped hundreds of brands deliver successful virtual and hybrid events, as well as helping brands pivot virtually. We’ve developed a broad range of online solutions to cater to varying event requirements from video conferencing for remote boardroom meetings, to interactive webinars, online content repository for large multi-day tradeshows as well as ‘all the bells and whistles’ webcast. Most importantly, when you partner with Encore you can enjoy the peace of mind your event is in expert hands who’ll provide planning guidance, show day production and virtual stage management to ensure everything runs seamlessly. Successful events all start with a conversation so let’s have one today – get in touch by sending an online enquiry. ... Read More