What We’ve Learned from Hosting Six Digital Experiences in Ten Weeks

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18 June 2020

No need to bury the lead: we’ve learned that digital experiences are here to stay.

They are now a permanent part of our toolkit. 

Inverta hosted six digital experiences in the span of ten weeks. We hosted virtual networking sessions of more than 100 attendees, and executive round-tables with ten to 15 attendees. We learned from authors, shared laughs with subject matter experts a world away, made new friends, and connected with industry comrades at a time when each day seemed to have a different complexion. 

After hosting and attending some really engaging events, we recommend incorporating the following elements to create stand-out digital experiences.

Incorporate one or more non-digital components:

There has been a lot of discussion around how to get home addresses for direct mailing. Using mail as a supplemental event tactic to add dimension and credibility to the experience has been successful. We’ve found that registrants will offer their home address as part of registration if it’s optional and if you’re forthcoming about what you’re sending. 

Choreograph Spontaneity:

Every once and awhile, your event will be blessed with one or several vocal, charismatic participants who involve the group, crack a joke or two, and generally keep the energy and momentum high. This personality is not a luxury, and it’s not something to leave to chance. 

Ensure that you’ll have a handful of extroverts attend your event apart from the normal audience by proactively reaching out and inviting them. Also, make sure they know their role. The right personality will have no problem speaking up, kidding the moderator, and gaining favor with the broader group.

Engineer Interactivity:

We were surprised at how acclimated B2B has become at one-way content delivery in a virtual environment. Our solution? Open it up for discussion! Relax the rehearsed content delivery, and inspire the group with open-ended questions and requests for feedback. Once the audience realizes it’s okay to participate, your event becomes a more valuable way to spend their time.

Break the fourth Wall:

A celebrity chef preparing a meal for a small audience, a private music performance, a magic show, an opportunity to ask a question to a famous personality, a whisky tasting led by your company’s CEO – how can you break the fourth wall to bring exclusivity into the homes of your audience? These surprise-and-delight moments, born from leveraging the attributes of a remote environment, are an important part of what separate digital experiences from the humdrum of a “another virtual event.”

Invest in the Production:

Not all events are created equal, and the strategy for creating digital experiences needs to be able to scale down (think zoom virtual networking events) and up (think the 5000+ attendee customer event). Some events will (and should!) require budget to ensure the production represents the value and uniqueness of the experience. 

Read more about our approach to digital experiences
Ashley Shailer
By: Ashley Shailer
Ashley has spent more than ten years designing and implementing world-class demand creation and lead management strategies that leverage the latest in marketing technology. She’s held client-side and analyst roles in marketing systems and marketing operations, and consulting roles that leverage her unique expertise in lead nurturing, account-based plays, content, messaging, and social media strategy for more than 40 clients.

In her spare time, she can be found enjoying a good super hero movie, a solid single malt, and dessert (not necessarily in that order).
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Ashley Shailer
By: Ashley Shailer

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