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Creating a Great Post-Event Experience

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The education and fun shouldn’t end when attendees walk-out the venue doors, keep the connection and engagement going up through your next event. This will keep your members reading emails, staying active on social, and attending outings throughout. 

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How to Use AI to Create New Value in Events

Text on the screen with 4 triangle images including AI

One of the top questions our clients ask us is: "What are some cool, new AI technologies I can use to elevate my event experience?"  Tech is a tactic in pursuit of some other goal.  Event goals are many; but purposeful and memorable are two that drive ROI and WOM (word of mouth.) 

This means layering tools and tactics that cement the IN-PERSON value and create memories that accurately remind the attendees of the event. AI and other tech tools can guide, nudge , or transform these elements to make them more memorable and purposeful.   

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Behind the Scenes: Elevating a Gala

Facilitated Conversations: The New Networking

A yellow background pictured with wooden blocks and text

Events have been back in full swing for well over a year, but for many events the attendee composition has changed.  In addition to the few devoted individuals that come year after year, there’s an entirely new constituency that has joined your industry or organization in the last few years.  Add in a segment of attendees who are a bit shy with getting back into the mix of networking and you’ve found yourself with the perfect opportunity for utilizing facilitated networking opportunities at your conference.  Here’s a quick list of ways to get started at your next meeting:

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3 Catalysts of a Positive Sponsorship Experience

Image of a handshake with text on the screen

As the event landscape evolves, so are meeting planners’ approaches to their outreach and relationships with sponsors. Sponsorship remains one of the most crucial and challenging components of getting an event up and running. On the one hand, sponsors provide much-needed capital and in-kind contributions, which helps meeting professionals put together the best possible experience for attendees. But what can you, as a meeting professional, provide in return? How can you ensure that your event sponsors are getting the maximum value out of the partnership?

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Insights for Re-Thinking Your Sponsorship Strategy

Image in a conference room of a meeting with a slide deck on a powerpoint slide and people sitting and standing

Our LAI Live team kicked off the summer of 2023 by hosting our first Live Luncheon, bringing together local meeting planners to discuss hot topics in the event industry.

During this “Midday Power Hour,” various types of meeting professionals joined our event producers to share both a meal and their professional expertise. Around the table, the group discussed innovative ways to create mutually beneficial relationships with sponsors and thoughtfully incorporate them into events.

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SourceAmerica Xforce National Conference: A Case Study on Accessibility

Creating an accessible experience for an entire audience is an aspect of meeting planning and production that is too often overlooked. Our LAI Live team recently produced a show with a mission to serve people with disabilities. With this event, we were able to push accessible event solutions to top-of-focus.

In this recap, we’ve outlined some of the solutions we implemented, as well as the challenges we learned from in an effort to create an inclusive event production for our audience and talent.

Closed Captioning

We worked with captioning professionals to implement picture-in-picture (PIP) English closed captioning onto the screens for the audience in the room. We had to keep in mind the footprint of the captions while designing the graphics and adjusted the camera angles to allow more space above or below the speakers’ faces so the captions didn’t block the images. It was also important to be mindful of sightlines for the captions. We placed the caption PIP at the top of the screens so that they were visible at the back of the room, and to prevent the captions from being obscured by the audience. Placing the rigging screens higher would have been another viable solution.

We also used captions transcribed by a human. AI-generated captions, while a more cost-effective solution, are less accurate. As producers, it is our responsibility to provide the captioners with all materials needed to caption accurately. This included all pre-produced videos, speaker and presenter names, other keywords specific to the programming, and a run of show.

Production Set up with two screens showing the run of showWoman on stage giving presentation with closed captions across LED screens

Audio Description

Though not a common practice for live events, audio description serves the visually impaired community by providing a live narration of what is happening on stage and on the screens during the program. For this accessible event, we had a remote audio description professional watching a live stream of the show and describing the program through a Zoom webinar which attendees could dial into on their own smartphones or through one of the smartphones provided.

American Sign Language

American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters were present for the entirety of the program. To accommodate these professionals, we set up an audio monitor near the interpreter onstage so they could hear clearly from where they were positioned. Also, stage lights are very bright, so we adjusted their angles and brightness so the interpreter could see their colleagues to communicate when they would alternate and to sign any missed remarks to each other. To be sure the audience had the best experience, seats were reserved in the front rows near the ASL interpreters for the best view.

Another method of ensuring visibility would be to utilize a camera dedicated to filming the ASL interpreter and then PIPing it onto screens in the room or in the virtual program for maximum visibility.

Speaker Mick Ebeling on stage next to American Sign Language InterpreterSpeaker on left side of stage giving a talk with a American Sign Language Interpreter on the right side of the stage

Ramps and Other ADA Considerations

To create an inclusive space for all speakers and talent in the program, every stage had an accessible entrance. The venue had only a limited inventory of ramps available onsite, and the meeting planner worked with the venue to coordinate our needs and cross-rent items as needed. While drawing our room diagram, we considered the space needed for the ramp’s footprint. The ramp we used had a 1” to 1’ incline, requiring 24’ for the ramp. Additionally, we used an ADA lectern that adjusted to the speaker’s height to accommodate those using a wheelchair. Similarly, robotic teleprompters that adjust to speakers’ heights were used. An alternative to this special equipment is to design the programming without a podium and run the teleprompter off a downstage comfort monitor.

These are just some of the solutions we implemented to boost accessibility for our client’s audience. In future shows, we hope to build on these solutions with more creativity. For example, designing scenic and graphics intentionally to include captions. We could craft our graphics and IMAG PIPs to sit on the left side of large edge blend screens with the captions on the right to appear as a seamless part of the design or add a small thin LED strip within the scenic design to house your captions over your staging. Thinking outside of the box like this makes event accessibility solutions feel like an intentional part of your show and not as an addition to being squeezed into a program.

Stage with three large LED screens that say "Xforce Awards 2023" Stage with three large LED screens that say "Xforce Awards"

Our main takeaway from partnering with our client to produce this event was to lead with respect and consideration. It is important to us to make our audiences feel included and impacted by our productions so designing everything from programing to stage blocking to room diagrams with accessibility in mind throughout the pre-production process creates a more inclusive and intentional end result.

What Goes into Producing an International Event?

Image of a stage with a pink screen and seating for an event.

You may already be familiar with the incredible event experiences we’ve produced with our clients across the United States, but did you know our LAI Live team also partners with groups on their overseas events? We recently supported one of our clients in Edinburgh, Scotland, to bring the same collaboration, expertise, and quality they expect for their U.S. events and produce an outstanding international event. Learn more about the details in this post.

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The Benefits of Event Management Services to Your Organization

A small chalkboard on a table with coffee and a pen, the chalkboard has the words event management in a box surrounded by encompassing tasks

Whether you’re hosting a sales kickoff event, a conference or seminar, or an event to celebrate company achievements, event management can assist with careful planning and execution. A well-planned event can have a significant impact on the success of a business, as it can create a positive impression on attendees, reinforce brand awareness, and generate new business leads. With a combination of creativity, organizational skills, and attention to detail, production management teams have the expertise and experience needed to elevate your next event.

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Creating Session Moments through Sub-Branding

Well-designed visual content is a must-have element for any professional production. But it doesn’t have to stop with just the main event theme. Main stage sessions that contain a variety of segments, awards, or features can visually signal to the audience a new segment is beginning by celebrating with their own visual identities while staying on-brand during the rest of the show.

Over the course of a show or convention spanning several days, it can be a great way to keep graphics fresh and pleasing to the eye while getting the most mileage out of the visual brand developed for the event.

LAI Live Producers work with our clients to develop the moments within the show that deserve a few extra content highlights. Through creative “sub-branding,” our Creative Director and designers leverage the primary event brand for unique looks and often incorporate a new element or uniquely styled titling to give each segment a clearly delineated visual moment in the programming.

Example of A Primary Visual Brand Theme

For one client, we utilized this approach during the President’s initiative launch for the upcoming year. In the same convention, the association launched a separate nationwide program for their members while highlighting resources and key components of the program. By filling the screens with branding and other key identifiers, we were able to create instantly recognizable branded assets that the association then used throughout the next year to build on the branded experience attendees got at the convention.

National League of Cities LED ScreensNational League of Cities LED ScreensNational League of Cities LED Screens

With another client, we used “sub-branding” to highlight key segments of the general sessions.

IFA LED Screens

IFA LED Screens

Primary Branding For The Convention, From Which Elements Were Drawn

With awards spread throughout three days of programming, we identified them not just by category and name, but by filling the screen with celebratory graphics that drew on the brighter hues of the branding color palette. As we transitioned into the awards, the screens, along with lighting, turned a yellow-gold hue to announce the moment.

IFA Yellow Graphic

IFA Green and Yellow Graphic with the words "Franchise 10x" across the screen

A specialty segment consisting of three 7-minute hot seat interviews was brought to life with energetic green graphics – signaling to the audience this wasn’t going to be a normal fireside chat. Another segment with the convention general session highlighted their professional certification program.

IFA Blue Graphic with the words certified franchise executives across the graphic

This program featured its own pre-determined branding and color palette from the organization, so we drew on it for our unique look for that segment. Our designers blended the creative artwork of the event with the program branding to create a unique feel in each segment while staying true to the brand palette and textures of the entire show.

Supporting your organization in achieving its key messaging goals in the live production environment is constantly top of mind in our creative process. When it comes to creative graphic content, we leverage your brand to create special moments in the show that will stick with your attendees throughout the year!

Looking to Incorporate Sub-Branding Into Your Next Event?