For an event attendee, their experience is everything. So the fact that your events are now virtual doesn’t give you a pass to make attendee experience an afterthought. In reality, virtual events are saturating the market, meaning that your events need to stand out even more.
Take the Association of Independent Commercial Producers (AICP) for example. While the pandemic was unfolding, they were organizing their largest events, The AICP Awards. These multiple-day events culminated with a 2,000-person gathering at The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York. Needless to say, they had to pivot sharply, while keeping guest experience as their highest priority.
“We discussed at length how to engage people in a setting that feels like it’s live and mimics the energy of an in-person event as much as possible,” said Aurora Warfield, AICP’s National Events Producer. “We also wanted to make sure our attendees still felt like they were getting a white-glove experience, even though we couldn’t host our usual events, including the black-tie premiere at MoMA.”
AICP’s secret for a seamless online experience: removing as many barriers for entry and engagement as possible. “We wanted it to feel as though — similar to the in-person event — they arrive at a place, they enter through a doorway, and they have that full brand experience while making their way to the main stage,” said Aurora.
It wasn’t an easy feat, but AICP proved that event marketers are some of the most resilient and adaptable people out there by turning a virtual event into an engaging brand experience.