“We give people lots to do in the [virtual] experience, and that’s how you need to think about it,” Mark Bornstein, VP of marketing, ON24, told us in a webinar on webinars a few weeks ago. “What can I enable my audience to do, besides just watch my presentation?”
GovExec thought this way as well and started focusing on how and where they can produce high-level video content. “We constantly in our production were drawing on examples of TV network and news networks saying, ‘Oh, what if we could do stuff like that,’” said Haley Berling, senior manager, digital programs and events, GovExec.
“If there’s one thing to take away, it is the theme of evolution and constantly having to change. We realized very quickly that translating live events to digital events is not a one-to-one translation. It is actually a completely different language you start to speak.”
Fortunately for SIIA, Jenny Baranowski, managing director for SIIA’s CODiE Awards, speaks that language well. In planning the 2022 CODiE Awards Virtual Winner Announcements Celebration for Business Technology and Ed Tech—set for this Wednesday and Thursday at 4 pm ET—she will be giving finalists, colleagues and other interested parties across the globe a unique virtual experience. (You can register here for free.)
Since 1986, SIIA’s CODiE Awards have honored thousands of software, education, information and media products, leaders and teams for achieving excellence. They will be achieving their own excellence by staging this state-of-the-art, virtual, metaverse-inhabiting, engagement-filled celebration that can be enjoyed around the globe.
This will not be your older sibling’s virtual event. As Bornstein and Berling, said, times have changed. Pre-Show Networking with fellow technology leaders will take place in the NewSkyXR rooftop metaverse. No worries over whether to hug, shake hands, or elbow or fist bump. SIIA lifetime achievement award winner Feyzi Fatehi will discuss his recently published book Democratizing SaaS. The SIIA policy team will also be there to discuss the issues that matter most to your business. And a Gather Voices video booth can capture guests’ red carpet moments.
At 5 pm, the winners will be announced as networking continues with a live chat throughout the event. There’s even a virtual After Party at 6 pm to congratulate winners and create winner thank-you videos using the Gather Voices platform. There will also be an Innovation Showcase, featuring 10 entrepreneurs bringing innovative learning technologies to the education market.
All in all, it will be a good window into the latest possibilities for a virtual event. (A welcome video will help you navigate.) As you enter the metaverse, you’ll be taken through a wizard to create your personalized avatar. You can either start with a picture of yourself or select a starting avatar which you can then customize. Check out the clothing tab before you finish to put your best look forward. There will also be exclusive meet and greets, and special terraces to “gather” that can hold up to 20 people at a time. Signs will guide you to the right places.
It’s very cool when SIIA can practice what experts preach.
“We created a new virtual experience,” Berling of GovExec said. “We incorporated things like virtual and customer sponsor resource pages with interactive chat features in downloadable assets for our clients. We created a virtual press room and editorial resource library for our editorial staff. And then we built a simple theater digitally where users can easily consume the content within very intuitive, easy login experience and [more] chat…
“As a living resource hub of content of all types, and then a place where our VIP community could come and interact with us and each other, it was more of a digital experience. Over the course of the next six months we partnered with some fabulous partners and actually built and developed that event site into our own internal virtual event platform that we could easily deploy for multiple events.”
Welcome to the brave new world of virtual events. Again, come check us out Wednesday and/or Thursday by registering here.