Events as Part of Strategy: iLOQ and NJ Production recognized as best in Finland

Finland’s biggest event competition Evento Awards awarded iLOQ and event partner NJ Production in the brand new category “Events as Part of Strategy”. The category highlights companies who strategically use events to achieve success as important part of a wider set of sales and marketing measures.

Events as a strategic tool in driving business results

Heikki Hiltunen, CEO of iLOQ said that “At iLOQ, events play a crucial role in our strategic approach and daily operations, serving as a cornerstone for building our thought leadership position in the global market.”

The submitted work, “iLOQ20 – Life made limitless”, brought more than 600 participants from 24 countries to Oulu – the birthplace of iLOQ. The goal was to celebrate the revolutionary access management company’s 20-year journey while boosting their brand and business.

iLOQ decided to combine their annual events aimed at different target audiences – their customers, partners, suppliers, and personnel – into one powerful culture and brand experience week: iLOQ20 Life made limitless. It was a strategic decision to maximize impact, support their business goals and reduce the carbon-footprint by combining their annual event series and investments.

The event resulted in increased sales performance and savings, enhanced brand awareness and social media presence, exceedingly positive participant feedback, and a significant estimated reduction in carbon emissions by strategically combining the event series and following sustainable event planning processes.

Strategic agency partnership is the key to success

Noora Olsson, Partner at NJ Production says that “an agency partner who understands the business, goals and strategy is most important when organizing events that play such a crucial role. We have a long-term partnership with iLOQ when it comes to their most important events. We also won the Evento Award for iLOQ’s 15-year anniversary event. Together we are aiming to inspire and challenge other companies to make events as part of their business strategy.”

Results speak for themselves

“The impact of “iLOQ20 – Life made limitless” has been substantial for iLOQ. Strengthening relationships with stakeholders has translated into a better market position, enhanced trust, and heightened respect. These positive relationships serve as a catalyst, effectively spreading the message about iLOQ’s values, culture, and performance. This contributes to attracting new customers and partners who resonate with our approach and vision. In essence, our event strategy not only aligns with our business goals but also actively shapes the narrative and perception surrounding iLOQ on a global scale,” said Hiltunen.

Hiltunen elaborates that in addition to business objectives, events play a crucial role in nurturing iLOQ’s unique company culture. “This culture is not only ingrained in our internal team but also extends to our partners and customers, fostering a sense of unity and shared purpose,” said Hiltunen.

Results

“iLOQ20 – Life made limitless” was an absolute success, uniting the industry community, amplifying iLOQ culture and making an impact on their business with powerful results.

The event resulted in:

  • increased sales performance and savings up to 1,7M€
  • enhanced brand awareness and social media presence with 1.8M campaign impressions, +42% higher organic impressions and tripled engagements
  • exceedingly positive participant feedback with NPS of 83 and event score 4.7/5.
  • 52% reduction estimated in carbon emissions by strategically combining the event series

“iLOQ20 – Life made limitless” was an important milestone in their mission of making life accessible and ultimately, limitless.

 

Success at the Evento Awards illustrates the power of strategic events in driving business growth and shaping brand narratives. As businesses navigate an increasingly competitive landscape, using events as part of a comprehensive marketing strategy can become the key to your success.

Would you like to know more? Book a meeting using the button below and let’s get started.

Interview: Stora Enso - Insights into Sustainable Leadership Events

Stora Enso is a global leading provider of renewable materials. They wanted to embed sustainability principles throughout their organization. But how to successfully drive sustainability transformation with more than 20 thousand employees across the globe?

Stora Enso invited 200 of their top leaders to Holmenkollen, Oslo – a city leading by example aiming to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 95% in 2030.

SEe Sustainability learning platform was created to inform, engage and inspire leaders to embed sustainability in their own teams. The goal of the event was to launch the platform and bring Stora Enso leaders together to reinvent themselves and their company while keeping sustainability in focus during event planning and production. Attendees collaborated in workshops, participated in panel discussions, and left the event with a concrete plan to make a positive impact within their teams and Stora Enso.

Feedback for the event exceeded all expectations with an event score of 9,5/10 and net promoter score being 88, making it the most successful Stora Enso leadership event to date.

We successfully demonstrated sustainability principles as we reduced and compensated CO2 emissions and made Stora Enso SEe Sustainability event completely carbon neutral.

We sat down with James Barr, the project lead for SEe Sustainability event, for an insightful interview to talk about the journey of event planning and the role of event partners.

What was your role at SEe Sustainability?

James: My role was to be the liaison point between our CEO and the group leadership team and trying to help bring all the content and the inspirational aspects of it together. I was our project manager working with NJ to really bring this to life. When you’ve got an event with 200 senior leaders, taking up several days of their time, it needs to be perfect. It had to be an event that they saw as really inspiring and worth everyone’s time.

What would you say to other companies looking to create sustainable events?

James: We recognize that sustainability is the core of our overall business strategy and it has to be front and center of all discussions and decision making.

First of all, where we really had great success, was inspiring people with outside stories. We had nine external speakers, all approaching sustainability from slightly different angles, and each of these inspired different people at our event. That was the biggest learning – not just having internal discussions on how we see sustainability, but really getting that outside-in perspective.

The second thing is you can’t have a sustainability-focused event if any aspect of the event appears not to be sustainable. So it goes without saying, but you can’t have plastic bottles lying around, you can’t have unsustainable logistics. You just can’t do things that go against the sustainable conversation that you’re having throughout the event. Go above and beyond what you think might be necessary in the whole participant journey to really make sure that it all feels very sustainable in itself. I think that’s very relevant.

What would you say are the most important aspects of selecting an event partner?

James: I think the most important thing for me was absolutely feeling confident that the event partner was on top of all the planning aspects. I think that’s absolutely the number one priority, that you feel everything is under control. Obviously a live event can be quite a stressful situation. You don’t want surprises. You need to feel that everything is under control. I think that’s always been my #1 focus in terms of who to go with.

There also has to be a good, trusted relationship. You need to be able to believe in each other and work with each other in an enjoyable as well as trusted way. It should be enjoyable so that we all have fun planning the event and then I think that also comes across to the participants. When you’re actually there, they can see that there is no stress and everyone is just enjoying with confidence it’s going to go well. And then participants also feel confident, relaxed and enjoy themselves.

How would you describe working with NJ Production?

James: I think there are three areas that I would highlight. One is a little bit linked to what I was just saying – I was always confident in NJ throughout the process. So right from the first meetings through to follow-ups after the event.

I think throughout NJ’s team, they’re always very professional, very organized. And I think one thing that stood out for me was that each individual took real ownership of their part, the responsibilities were very clear, and each person was committed to delivering a good result from their role, whatever it might have been. Always very confident in the planning and implementation.

The second thing was the creative aspect, and I think this wasn’t actually necessarily on the top of my agenda. But I love the fact that NJ came up with so many different inspiring ideas, be it around workshops and fun board games around sustainability, party themes in the evening or even the auditorium set up creating a really nice environment in what was not the most naturally advantageous room.

The third thing, which I mentioned a little bit earlier, was that the whole event was fun. Yeah, it was. The whole team always seem to be smiling, always seem to take positive stance and it was clear that everyone was enjoying what they did and then that made it easy for me as project manager to enjoy what I was doing. And it just felt a very easy, happy, positive process throughout.

In summary, I would just say that I really compliment NJ for pulling together such a great team and also creating a company culture that is extremely consistent and allows for this kind of performance from an events agency. I’ve never seen that before and it’s really quite impressive. So really congratulations!

 

SEe Sustainability succeeded in driving the sustainability transformation, uniting Stora Enso leaders and teams to play their part for our future.

We are available to consult your team on sustainable event planning. Book a meeting using the button below.

We are now in Helsinki and more great news

We are so excited to share great news – we now have a team in Helsinki so we can work more closely with you. Should we have a catch-up virtually or live?

Read below about our latest project celebrating iLOQ’s 20th anniversary, our venue finding service and sustainability journey.

Now in Helsinki!

We are so happy to announce that we have expanded to Helsinki and our office is officially open!

This means we can now work even more closely with our strategic partners in Finland, bringing knowledge, expertise, and global trends to your events.

Our top team is ready to kick off your next event planning!

Read more here (in Finnish).

iLOQ celebrates 20th anniversary in Oulu

650 guests from almost 30 countries came together in the birthplace of iLOQ – Oulu, Finland.

We transformed Ouluhalli into a world-class stage that hosted prominent keynotes, astronaut trainers, smart city architects, and iLOQ brand ambassador, international motorsports superstar Kimi Räikkönen.

The event received a record-high feedback scoring 9.5 out of 10 and the NPS was 83.

See some wonderful moments from the aftermovie here.

Do you need help with finding the right venue?

We will find you a venue in Finland, Scandinavia or around the world. Our global network will help you to secure best rates, get the most flexible terms and value for money.

Whether you need a venue for an event of 50 or 5000, we have strong relationships with hotels, convention centers and special venues globally.

We are certain we will find a venue to meet your requirements.

Discover the keys to a successful event venue and destination search here.

Creating sustainable events in 2024

As sustainability plays a key part in business strategies, we have taken concrete steps to commit to sustainable event planning and production.

By partnering with sustainability experts and different carbon offsetting projects, we now have the full capability of creating carbon neutral events.

We are available to consult your team on sustainable event planning. Book a meeting here.

Whether you would like to grab a coffee, kick-off your next event, need help finding a venue or know more about sustainable event planning, we are here for you. Book a meeting and let’s have a chat 😊

8 tips for successful event venue & destination search

Do you need help with finding the right venue?

Finding the right venue for your event is an important step in ensuring its success. Each aspect demands careful consideration, from aligning with your company’s objectives to ensuring accessibility and sustainability. We have combined 8 tips from 20 years of experience to find the perfect location for your event. By following these steps, you’ll be equipped to make a choice that not only meets your needs but also elevates your event to new heights.

1. Business & event goals

Consider your company’s objectives and event goals to find a venue that aligns with your purpose, such as strategic locations for targeting growth markets, touring your innovative factory or R&D site, or visiting office locations.

2. Accessibility

Ensure the venue is easily accessible for your target audience, considering transportation options and proximity to airports, train stations, or major highways.

3. Sustainability

Look for venues that prioritize eco-friendly practices and have green certifications.

4. Budget, taxes & service charge

Determine your budget before starting your venue search to ensure you find options within your financial constraints. Understand the tax and service charge implications associated with the venue to avoid surprises.

5. Size matters & one size does not fit all

Consider the size and layout requirements for various areas within the venue, including the main hall, breakout rooms, function areas, and restaurants. Ensure they meet your specific needs in terms of capacity, height, accessibility, and proximity.

6. Branding possibilities

Evaluate the branding opportunities offered by the venue, such as signage, customizable spaces, and digital displays, to enhance your event’s branding and messaging.

7. Recommendations & ratings

Read reviews, seek recommendations, and check ratings from previous clients or event planners who have used the venue to gain insights into their experiences and overall satisfaction.

8. Site visit

Before finalizing a venue, schedule a site visit to see the facilities in person, assess the ambiance, meet the venue staff, and address any specific requirements or concerns you may have.

Following these tips you will surely find a venue that not only meets your requirements but exceeds your expectations, creating an event that will be remembered for years to come. Success is in the details!

 

If you would like to know more and perhaps have a virtual coffee to talk about your next event, get in touch by booking a meeting directly in the calendar.

We are looking for an Executive Producer to work at our office in Helsinki.

You will manage international corporate event projects from proposal to production.  We expect you to have previous experience in event management.

KEY RESPONSIBILITIES 

✅ Lead powerful event experiences globally
✅ Create global event concepts, commercial offers and budgets
✅ Build production plans to manage project milestones to meet event goals
✅ Efficiently communicate with teams all around the world
✅ Travel on-spot to make it happen

WHAT YOU WILL NEED TO BE SUCCESSFUL

⭐ Passion for live events
⭐ Strong project management and problem-solving skills
⭐ Fun, positive, “Let’s do it” attitude
⭐ 3-5 years of relevant work experience for the position
⭐ Excellent communication skills, fluent in spoken and written English
⭐ Proficiency in MS Excel and PowerPoint

WHY NJ PRODUCTION?

💚 Award-winning Event Marketing Agency
💚 Passionate, collaborative, and highly motivated team
💚 Building the future of live events for sustainable businesses
💚 Cosy, sustainable workspace in Helsinki
💚 Travelling with events globally
💚 Motivating salary and benefits


NEXT STEPS

⏭ Tell us about your previous success stories in the world of event management
⏭ Send your resume to work@nj-production.com (Confidentiality guaranteed)
⏭ Contact our CEO, Jonas Olsson, if you have any questions at jonas@nj-production.com

All available positions

How to prepare for Hybrid Events?

How to prepare for hybrid events?

As the world is slowly opening up, we see that events are also transitioning from fully virtual into hybrid formats. Now is the time to think ahead and redesign the event experience for your audience.

The past year has greatly influenced peoples’ habits and preferences. Technology that supports remote meetings and events has taken a leap forward in evolution and innovation. Although all event formats – virtual, hybrid or in-person – will have their place and a purpose, we think that the biggest challenge and reward ahead lies in redesigning your event experience for the hybrid format.

What is a hybrid event?

A hybrid event is any event where an in-person and virtual audience joins together to engage and interact in the same event experience.

7 steps to plan a hybrid event

1. Clearly define your event purpose and the value it brings to your target audience(s)

The first cornerstone of any event – virtual, hybrid or in-person – is a clear definition of its purpose. Whom is it organised for? What are the goals of the event and key messages for the target audience? The answers to those questions will be the foundation of planning and managing your project.

Also, consider how the pandemic has changed peoples’ behaviours and what you can do to accommodate the needs and wishes of your target audience. This will help you find the right format.

2. A hybrid event can be organised with many combinations of different formats

In its simplest form, you have an in-person event with the main studio, and the virtual audience can join, interact, and influence content the same way as in-person participants.

Hybrid hubs are a great option when organising international events. In this case, content is shared from the main studio to the regional hubs, where it is possible to have in-person events. It is also possible to bridge hubs and cross share content. Be bold to create true dialogue and empower the feeling of being part of a community.

In addition to the shared experience, hubs can organise their own regional program around it.

3. Choose a platform that best supports your event goals

There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Event goals, target audiences, and key messages will guide you to the right platform selection. You can read our tips on how to choose your virtual or hybrid event platform here.

4. Create program structures tailored for in-person and virtual audiences

Essentially, you are organising content for different audiences in one event. Think about the program length, which parts are united, and which are separate for your audiences.

Usually, the in-person event’s duration is longer than the virtual. In-person participants need time to move around, and they have breaks together to network. The virtual audience usually needs a shorter program because people lose focus, easily tire, or get distracted behind their screen more quickly.

Since the program flow is very different in in-person hubs and virtual events, plan a supporting program with moderation to guide the audience through the virtual experience while others have an in-person networking break. The virtual audience should feel that they are always guided and supported and that their experience is planned.

Think that you are organising two events – plan the event journey for in-person and virtual audiences with unified parts.

5. Build the main studio to be live audience friendly

It’s important to remember that you are creating an event experience for the in-person participants at the main studio. They need screens to see the streamed content and what the cameras are showing. The screens can display supporting materials, event visuals, keynote presentations, the host, and maybe even the participants themselves at some point.

The main studio needs to be more than a streaming hub. There should be a lobby and registration area, food and beverage, and all other amenities to make the in-person event participants’ experience at the hybrid studio as high quality as it would be at a solely in-person event.

6. Apply lessons learned from virtual events – plan new content flow

Organising fully virtual events have given us many lessons that can be applied to in-person events. Attention spans are shorter, and audiences are more demanding when it comes to content. For example, 45-minute live presentations do not work that well in a virtual format. Your hybrid event can benefit from sharper and snappier content to keep your participants engaged and energized.

Planning ahead, think about what content should be live and what can be pre-recorded and how will the main studio audience experience the recorded parts?

7. Be inclusive with engagement & networking

It’s important that your virtual audience feels engaged and part of the event.

Think about three different types of engagements: in-person, virtual, and united engagement. By using an event app, everyone can take part in the same Chat, Q&A and Polls or even engage in one-on-one video meetings regardless of their location.

A successful hybrid event manages to blur the line between physical and virtual engagement.

 

It is a great time to think about how your event experience can be redesigned to become hybrid ready and start planning.

If you would like to know more and perhaps have a virtual coffee to talk about hybrid solutions, get in touch by booking a meeting directly in the calendar.

Case study: iLOQ - Unlock the future

If you don’t have the muscles, you need balls 😎

As we are looking towards the future, sometimes it’s good to look back at amazing past events.

Let’s study the case of iLOQ’s “Unlock the future” event which won us the Best B2B Event award in Finland.  iLOQ is a fast-growing Finnish company that has transformed mechanical locking into highly functional and immensely secure digital access management.

iLOQ approached us with several exciting business challenges. They were (and still are) growing fast and they wanted to launch a new product, introduce their new brand identity, strengthen partnerships, and deepen relationships to create new business. They also wanted to celebrate their 15th anniversary. As we started to build the concept, we agreed that to make an impact, we need balls.

Solution

We created an industry platform where partners, customers, key personnel, and media could share a unique experience together. This way, by putting together separate event budgets into one, we could maximize the impact.

As iLOQ’s mission is to disrupt the locking systems industry, they also wanted to lead the way in creating an extraordinary brand experience by building their own world to present their vision, customer success cases, and future outlook.

We created the “Unlock the Future” event concept to illustrate how iLOQ is unlocking the future with its revolutionary locking systems. The concept and storyline united all the details of the project into a powerful “WOW!” experience that the participants are still talking about.

iLOQ’s CEO opened their future vision through digital storytelling, which concluded with the launch of their new product S50 that received audible gasps and a standing ovation. The audience was welcomed to step into the future through the digital gate which was built on the main stage from massive LED screens that had just been unlocked with iLOQ’s newest product. It was an impactful and emotional moment, which perfectly emphasized how storytelling can elevate your event, leave a powerful impression, and create long-lasting memories.

The official event concluded with a celebration and visualisation of iLOQ’s amazing 15th-anniversary journey during the final dinner. It was a sentimental moment illustrating how far they had already come and what exciting future lies ahead.

Results

The event was an absolute success and exceeded all expectations. The unified industry event bravely served different target audiences. 73% of customers predicted purchases from iLOQ to increase in the next year, customers’ Net Promoter Score reached an all-time high at 71 and the launched product (iLOQ S50) signed 5 large partner projects.

The powerful brand experience strengthened all partnerships within the iLOQ family. It was really the moment where the new iLOQ brand came alive.

See what iLOQ CEO, Joni Lampinen had to say about the event:

We were very pleased with the overall look and feel of the event. It was very dramatic, professional, and sharp. Participants were literally blown away. It helped to raise the profile of iLOQ as an employer and took our brand value to the next level. I look forward to continuing the partnership going forward. – Joni Lampinen, CMO

About NJ Production

NJ Production is your partner who puts the event experience in focus. We are passionate, we care, and we rise up to the challenge. If you would like to know more and perhaps have a virtual coffee to talk about hybrid solutions, get in touch by booking a meeting directly in the calendar.

See the event showreel

How to be more human in the Virtual World

While we are spending so much of our time in an engineered virtual world, it’s important to remember our human side.

Emotions expert Camilla Tuominen and event futurist Noora Olsson talked about the importance of emotions in the virtual world during a fully contactless interview at NJ Virtual Studio.

Camilla and Noora discussed the challenges of virtual leadership, the importance of emotions and social interactions, being courageous, creating innovation and much more.

Would you like to know how to successfully lead yourself and others in the Virtual World? Here are our key takeaways:

1. It’s important to understand and lead emotions while communicating through screens

This will help you understand how to keep your customers and team members engaged. It’s also beneficial to be on top of our own emotions to utilize that energy to perform even better.

“What are your team and customers feeling?”

2. Surprise and curiosity are powerful, but often underused emotions

Surprise wakes up our brains. Curiosity opens us up to new information and ideas. In the Virtual World, this can be done by switching up formats, upgrading virtual event platforms, scripting interactive content, and using engaging performers. But don’t reveal everything right away – keep people curious to find out more!

“When we are curious, we are all ears open and eager to know more.”

3. Leave room for human interactions

Take 5 minutes from your meeting to crack a joke, laugh, and have small talk. Science says that laughter gives us an energy boost, clears our mind, and lowers our stress. It creates connections and trust between people. Best of all, it gives our brain free happy hormones!

“Laughter is free dope!”

4. Shut up and listen – two-way communication is key

By allowing people to talk, they can sometimes reach their own solutions. Let them interact and make them feel heard. In a virtual setting that could mean giving participants the opportunity to influence the content and flow.

“Pay attention and really be there for the other person!”

5. There are many ways to be brave

In the corporate world, it could mean speaking out, asking a question, or disagreeing.

“Courage is not just for superheroes!”

6. Have the courage to do things differently

There is a risk of embarrassment or being ridiculed when doing things for the first time. But it’s important to remember that right now we are all in the same boat and nobody is perfect.

“Try new things – test and pilot!”

7. Allowing people to feel “negative” emotions creates a safe environment

Disappointment, failures, and disagreements are all part of human nature. Allowing people to feel these things creates trust and allows innovation and new ideas to flourish.

“You cannot have innovation and ideas if you don’t have failures or disappointment.”

8. Innovation is born from good relationships, trust and being vulnerable

Innovation is not something that can be ordered from employees. It’s the result of a trusting environment. There are no wrong ideas or questions.

“Embrace the situation and just be human!”

These are unprecedented times for everybody. Leading our emotions is key to successful virtual leadership. We encourage everyone to be more courageous, try new things, leave space for emotions, and express them openly. Be more human to break through digital barriers.

 

Be courageous, curious, and imperfect!

 

Camilla Tuominen is an author, illustrator, keynote speaker and a true ambassador for emotions in the corporate world. Connect on LinkedIn and Instagram, visit her website at https://www.camillatuominen.com/

Noora Olsson is an event futurist, creative director, and partner at NJ Production. Connect on LinkedIn.

Watch a clip from the discussion

Be safe and stay connected with fully contactless Virtual Studios

As COVID-19 safety measures are in full effect in many parts of the world, people are encouraged to limit their contacts as much as possible. Thanks to technological advancements, attendees and organisers can be united in the same virtual event experience without coming together physically. And the best part – it can look like your brand and be engaging with the help of our Virtual Studio.

What is a Virtual Studio?

We can create your dream studio in a virtual format. Your fully branded Virtual Studio will have an animated virtual stage and screen, where contributors can connect from where-ever they are, including the comfort and safety of their (home)office. Best of all – while being fully contactless.

In addition to being the safest option for corporate events, Virtual Studios are also budget friendly. There is no need to rent a physical studio or event venue, fly in contributors or think about additional COVID-19 health measures.

Fully virtual and contactless with high quality

Virtual Studio will have the highest quality streaming and it is possible to upgrade the contributors’ connections. Home Studio kits can be delivered to upgrade your contributors’ sound, lighting, and camera. You can easily immerse speakers in your Virtual Studio environment with backdrops or green screens. Virtual Studios have many possibilities to bring people together while also making it exciting and engaging with creative technological solutions.

Virtual Events are here to stay

Virtual event formats have firmly secured their place in the event industry. It is worth considering what type of events can benefit from this format today and in the future.

For example, opting for a virtual event means fewer people travelling and fewer resources spent, which makes it a more sustainable option. That means it can help organisations to reach their environmental sustainability goals.

We believe that every event format has a place and a purpose. Think which events in your calendar could fit into a virtual format and possibly even work better that way.

 

Our takeaway from these turbulent times is that your event can deliver meaningful content, create valuable connections, be creative and inspiring, all while being cost-efficient, sustainable, and completely contactless.

 

You’ll believe it when you see it? Let’s have a virtual coffee and start planning today.

Book a meeting directly in the calendar using the button below.

11 tips on how to choose a virtual event platform for 2021

Today there is a jungle of platforms available to help share your content online. We see how many organisations are struggling with choosing the right platform to host their events. They are looking for a tool to make virtual events more engaging and appealing than Teams meetings and webinars. Organisations need a solution that gives them more opportunities and insights such as communication and engagement tools, business metrics, and sales & marketing systems’ integrations.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Event goals, target audiences, and key messages are so specific that there is no “one platform” that solves it all. But we can give you some guiding pointers to help you with making that decision.

Here’s a quick checklist of capabilities to look for when choosing your virtual event platform:

1. Attention – how to win it and keep it

First impressions matter. To get attendees, you must win and retain your target groups’ attention. This is especially important in a series of events. Find out how the event platform handles the invitation and registration process.

Attendees should immediately recognize who is sending the event invitations, reminders and other communication. Consider the design and whether you would like to add visuals or embed a video.

Can you track your communications, so that you know how well your messages were received and improve when necessary? Make sure that the platform uses an e-mail and SMS system with the highest deliverability so that your messages don’t end up in junk or spam folders.

2. Accessibility – everyone loves simplicity

Make your virtual event as easily accessible as possible. Do participants have to create an account and a profile? Consider whether this is necessary for your event.

Are you catering to a global audience? Will your platform be accessible from countries with user access restrictions such as China? It’s also good practice to carry out connectivity tests prior to the event to ensure access. All to guarantee that your audience will reach your event.

3. Customizations and branding – build your world

Think about what aspects and how much does the platform allow you to customize. Does everything feel like it’s a part of your world and brand? You can create the most immersive experiences from branded event invitations, ramp-up activities, URLs, branded and customized engagement tools, to post-event actions. Find out your possibilities.

4. Engagement – an engaged attendee is a happy attendee

What opportunities and tools does the virtual event platform offer to engage with attendees? Make sure that you have the possibility of two-way communication. This is what drives the event experience and helps you get to know your attendees better.

5. Metrics – identify business opportunities and save time

We cannot stress enough that metrics reveal business opportunities. It’s important that you set goals and targets so that you can later measure the success of your event.

Ask what kind of metrics you can get from the virtual event platform. What is the lead generation process? Does the platform give attendees engagement scores or something else to assist with identifying potential business opportunities? You might have hundreds or thousands of attendees. This lets you know where the most potential business is – what a time saver!

6. Integrations – make it fit your needs

One of the key things to consider is easily getting that valuable metrics data directly into your sales & marketing systems. Using a platform that is also open to different pre- and post-event tool integrations makes life a lot more convenient.

7. Production and set-up – look for quality and expertise

Ask what kind of connection opportunities the virtual event platform provides. Do you want to stream exclusively from (home)offices? Do you need a supporting studio set-up for recording? Would you like to go for the highest quality production and set it up like a live TV-show?

Find out whether the virtual event platform provider also offers technical and video production professional services. While everything is handled backstage, you can focus on stage.

8. Streaming – the quality that matches your event format

Different platforms are built for different quality streaming. Depending on what type of production and set-up you choose, make sure that your platform supports the streaming quality. Ask what are your options.

If you are organising an international event, make sure that the platform supports global streaming.

9. Support – there when you need it

Ask what type of support the platform provides for presenters, attendees, and organisers. Is there a live help desk available?

Also, find out where is your support. Time zones are especially important when you have a global reach. You or your attendees might need to get in contact with someone immediately when any problems arise.

10. Commitment and pricing – eliminate surprises

When planning your procurement, think about how fast your company makes decisions. Discover how long is the platform’s onboarding time.

Usual commitment options for virtual event platforms are either per event or an annual plan. Consider what type of commitment are you comfortable with and what it means for your organisation.

11. Security and backup solutions – basic hygiene

Make sure that your virtual event platform is secure, fully tested, and ready to perform. It should also be load tested to make sure that it can smoothly handle traffic from all your attendees and presenters.

Confirm that the virtual event platform has all the essentials for you to be able to comply with privacy and data security regulations. You should know the location of your data, so find out where are the servers.

And of course, ensure that there are well-functioning backup solutions. You think you don’t need them until you do!

How we got here…

Our teams have invested a lot of time analysing and testing different virtual platforms to find out how we best can support our customers. We were also navigating in this virtual jungle. We know the pain of trying to choose a virtual event platform. We felt that we could not find the right fit to replace live events. The available solutions were too technical, too boring, without enough engagement possibilities.

We wanted to differentiate from the competition, be fully branded and have engagement as in live events. Our mission is to create a virtual event that would feel like a live event.

We believe that we got as close as we can by creating Global Virtual Hub platform. It’s an all-inclusive, business-first, fully tested and ready to perform virtual event platform.

If you would like to know more and perhaps have a look at your possible solution, get in touch by booking a demo directly in the calendar or by simply sending a message.

Global Virtual Hub showreel

We at NJ believe that every event format – virtual, hybrid or live – has a place and a purpose.

Nowadays, many of us are constantly in and out of virtual meetings. It’s great to see how people and companies have skillfully adapted to the situation in the world. Humans really are experts in overcoming adversity!

However, this does not come without its challenges. Perhaps you have seen that while people show up, their engagement is not as high as you would like. Your attendees might be experiencing virtual meeting or webinar fatigue because all those everyday Zoom and Teams calls look and feel the same.

Three key areas to upgrade your virtual events

We at NJ are very curious about human behaviour. Since the virtual event boom started, we have been observing and studying both organisers and attendees. From this experience, we have identified three key areas to successfully deliver a virtual event:

1. Branding – differentiate from competitors and everyday Teams meetings
Your virtual event should be your world. Plan your brand journey and attendee experience carefully because each touchpoint is an opportunity to tell your story and leave an impression. From invites to custom engagement tools, each step must stay true to the look and feel of your company and culture.

Did you know that some event platforms can design tailored emojis and reactions specifically for your event? Ask your next event partner – there are probably more possibilities than you can even imagine. Your virtual space is your event venue, and it should be branded as such. Create a wow-effect when your attendees step in and most importantly, stand out from routines and competition.

2. Engagement – humans are social creatures
Plan your content so that people can engage, interact, and be a part of the dialogue. As they are listening, they also want to feel heard. All live interactions should be carefully planned and moderated. Your event partner should help you create motivating event communication for your target audiences to keep them engaged before, during and after the event.

While planning your attendee journey, prepare each touchpoint so that engagements support and are relevant to your business goals. No touchpoint should be without a plan and no action without a purpose. Engagements are not only important for the attendee experience, but they also bring main input for the third key point: business.

3. Business – it IS personal
Engagements bring you metrics, metrics, metrics! Virtual events have opened many new opportunities to get valuable information for sales, marketing, and HR departments. Although there is a tendency to collect as much as possible, it is important to first identify what data is really relevant and specify appropriate metrics.

Together with your event partner, describe your lead generation process and determine how it translates to your virtual event setting. Find out whether your virtual event platform can provide engagement scores for your attendees to help with lead qualification. Integrations with existing sales and marketing tools make it significantly easier to make use of that precious data. If you had hundreds or thousands of attendees, how to know where is the most potential business and who to contact first?

Rethink your virtual interactions

Focus on creating the most valuable attendee experience. When navigating the world of virtual events, your biggest ally should be a competent partner with knowledge and experience. It can be difficult to make decisions when you don’t exactly know what you need. That’s why your partner should be more than a “yes-man” who just delivers exactly what was asked. Your partner should challenge you to make you better because they care about the best possible outcome. Now is the time to rethink, pilot and take your virtual events to the next level.

 

About NJ Production

NJ Production is your partner who puts the event experience in focus. We are passionate, we care, and we rise up to the challenge. If you would like to know more and perhaps have a look at your possible virtual solution, get in touch by booking a demo directly in the calendar or by simply sending a message.

 

Meanwhile, you can check out these links:

  • We really love what we do — just look at our latest showreel.
  • Planning your next virtual or hybrid event? Head over to NJ Virtual Hub.
  • Your next virtual event might get 10 times bigger attendance than your previous in-person event. Read more about how our customer Newsec pulled it off.