By Charly Neel, Digital Marketing Coordinator
A great deal of work goes into hosting, curating – and successfully pulling off – a signature event. Media Frenzy Global’s third iteration of PR Reimagined: Mastering Storytelling Through Disruption was my first opportunity to get an up-close look at the event-planning process from start to finish, and it was not until I was fully immersed in said process that I grasped just how much detail and forethought went into making an experience like this come to fruition. Fortunately, my first event production experience went relatively smooth, but there were definitely lessons learned along the way – lessons that would be helpful to any fellow marketer when charged with event coordination.
Below are three takeaways I learned in the process:
1. Keep it interactive. Interaction is a critical part of the success of any event. Whether your event includes a panel, booth activation, or an on-site brand experience the goal should always be to ensure attendees feel like they are included in the experience, not just a bystander looking in on the fun. Events such as SXSW, Create and Cultivate or the Fast Company Innovation Festival are all great examples of this.
Audience participation and interaction were a key factor for our event. The panel discussion centered around disruptive storytelling with an emphasis on Media Frenzy’s launch of the world’s first Holographic Press Release™, in partnership with Cathy Hackl and You Are Here Labs. The Holographic Press Release™ is a new, immersive and interactive way for brands to share news beyond the written word via apps like Snapchat and Facebook. With this, it was critical to showcase the product by allowing attendees to “tap into” this holographic experience. We allowed attendees to use their mobile devices to access the hologram and the demonstration was well received by panelists and audience members alike.
To further enhance the experience, our marketing team created a vision board around our new messaging #GoThere. This tagline is a call-to-action for brands and businesses that inspire innovative and disruptive thinking and a challenge to constantly seek the next big breakthrough in PR and marketing. We also featured a Social Media Confessional, where attendees professed their opinions about how the PR, marketing and communications industries could improve with regards to innovation, engagement and interaction. Incorporating such interactive elements gave us the opportunity to create additional content for use on our social media channels, where attendees could use the hashtag and continue the conversation, adding quite the personal touch!
2. Plan down to the minute. There are countless moving parts with curating a signature event, and each one needs to be airtight to ensure cohesiveness. Aside from the general event idea and theme, you will coordinate larger parts such as confirming panelists, selecting the right venue and gauging the audio and visual components needed. Most importantly, smaller details such as engagement points, parking and panelist accommodations cannot be overlooked, as those are the touches that can really boost your event from “great” to “unforgettable .” Make sure every minute of the event is accounted for in a detailed Run of Show by reviewing, as a team, the entire timeline from set-up to break down – several times if necessary, and keep in constant communication with your team!
3. Roll with the punches. Planning every aspect of an event is critical, but some factors are out of your control. Prepare as best you can for worst-case scenarios and arm yourself with the team and tools needed to adapt to last-minute changes or issues. This allows you to quickly adjust for those obstacles quickly and carry out the remainder of your event with ease.
PR Reimagined: Mastering Storytelling Through Disruption was a great opportunity to discuss the newest innovations in PR and marketing, and how to harness them for your brand. Additionally, it was also a chance to put my event coordination skills to the test. The team at Media Frenzy Global is already in the planning stages of the next PR Reimagined event. Keeping the above components top-of-mind, we are preparing to create an unforgettable experience.