Originally published by Arzoo Zaheer of MPI Ottawa on March 21, 2022
Basic details of the event:
Title: President Joe Biden’s virtual Inauguration: The Clean Energy for America Inaugural Ball
Date: January 20th, 2021
Location: Virtual on the Remo platform / eSAX Virtual Events
Number of Attendees: 3500
Specific Event Questions:
What was the main objective of your event?
This event was a fabulous experience and a perfect opportunity to showcase how a large-scale virtual event can be fun and exciting to showcase the inauguration of the President of the United States.
It was a black-tie-A-lister-all-the-way event, with performances by some noteworthy figures including Billie Eilish, Tom Hanks, Bruce Springsteen, Train and many others.
What was unique about this event for your organization?
While we were not part of the planning committee, nor hired directly by the US government; we hired and managed 20 people to provide specialized tech support and to help make this unique event a complete success.
How was this platform suitable for this event?
Instead of one screen to view all guests at the same time, there are smaller breakout tables. Just like an in-person networking event, you only talk to guests who are seated at your table. Attendees can see other attendees at other tables; and they may join a table by double clicking on it. These features (among others) offer a more natural experience.
How did this platform offer an innovative experience?
The Virtual Event platform offers interaction, engagement and overall, an exciting humane experience.
The Remo Platform is ideal for networking and is as close as one can get to an in-person event.
What was the biggest obstacle your team had to overcome?
You may send information to people on how to use a particular platform before an event, but they are likely not going to watch or read anything.
One of the biggest obstacles with any virtual event platform was having 1000’s of people login at approximately the same time. Technical staff were available on-site to help with user experience.
What are some things that you would improve for your next , similar large scale event?
Some people in our industry might say that they think virtual events don’t take that much planning. Being over-prepared is always wise. Next time, we would prefer to have more dry runs so all staff are comfortable with the event.
Everybody needs to know what is happening and when: show flow, event details like agenda, who will be coming ‘on stage’, which power point/video is going to play and when etc. With so many behind the scenes moving parts, being organized is essential!
Any last words or lessons learned?
Continuing to adapt as an event planner and entrepreneur is important. Make it as easy as possible for the client to have their attendees walk-away saying it was the best experience they ever had. When you make the client look good, you will find more business coming your way!
Article edited by:
Jarrod Goldsmith, eSAX virtual events founders
& Darlene Kelly-Stewart, Stonehouse Sales & Marketing Services