The hope that we might be able to get away with just postponing our events has passed.
It’s time to get serious about rethinking convening from the ground up within the context of a digital framework. We can all agree that trying to recreate physical events through a series of webinars and live streams isn’t going to quite cut it. We will never recreate some of the intrinsic advantages of in-person meetings. At the same time, there are some real advantages to virtual convening that we can realize with a bit of innovation. We don’t have to settle for a watered-down version of what the event was supposed to be. We just have to think differently, given our new set of parameters and accept the things we can’t change while optimizing for the things we can.
My 5-year-old, Alex, is learning the ukulele. He takes lessons at school, but since school is remote for now, he’s been getting his ukulele lessons from YouTube. And while YouTube will never replace the personal touch and enthusiastic coaching of the lovable Mr. Krohn. There is something to be said for the fact that this digital music lesson can show three separate camera angles at once while superimposing chord structures, notes, and narration. It even shows the words to the song—a reading lesson bonus! And it can be easily paused and replayed as needed. These are legitimate advantages of a digital version of this event that one doesn’t get in person.
The convening world needs to take a lesson from my son’s virtual ukulele lessons: let’s find ways to leverage technology in a way that may make for a different—but not worse—experience.
We Can Help Your Event Go Digital
My agency, Taoti Creative, serves a lot of clients who consider events and conferences to be a major part (if not the lifeblood) of their operation. In the past, we’ve worked with clients to help their websites and digital presence support their events. But times have changed, and we are already evolving our thinking towards services and solutions that are the events. For example:
- We have forged implementation partnerships with live streaming services to help integrate and extend their services beyond what they do out of the box.
- We are creating prototypes for a ‘conference in a box’ offering that mails a highly-engaging, experiential device to conference attendees.
- We are consulting with existing clients as to how to upgrade their websites to integrate and not just support their online conferences.
- With going 100% virtual, it’s now more important than ever to be compliant with ADA, 508, privacy, and other accessibility requirements. We’ve established a whole new practice area called QAP: Quality, Accessibility, and Privacy. This team ensures we take a “QAP-First” approach to everything we build.
- Virtual events aside, overhauling websites to make them more usable, easier to manage, and more effective is still one of our largest practice areas. Now, more than ever, it’s critical that your website be polished, on-brand, on-message, updated, and effective!
It’s Time to Be Your Best Digital Self
Whether you need to upgrade your digital presence, figure out how to take your event virtual, or even if you just want some operational guidance on how best operate in a fully remote world (something we’ve been set up to do well for a while now), we’d be happy to have a conversation and offer whatever help we can. We don’t pretend to have every answer, as this is a new space for all of us. We’re eager to engage and truly partner with organizations that want to be out in front of the industry when it comes to virtual convening and are open to a symbiotic relationship as we pioneer this brave new world together.
Drop me a line – firstname.lastname@example.org!
– brent (Founder / CEO)