July 23, 2024 6:36 AM
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REMOTE EVENTS IN 2023: STILL THRIVING, STILL TRANSFORMING

by João Brás, Europalco

 

Despite the increasing demand for in-person events and meetings, many companies continue to embrace hybrid/virtual alternatives. The pandemic has demonstrated that we can manage nearly all tasks remotely, although not all of them offer the same level of experience.

An in-person event consistently delivers a more significant impact than a remote one. However, a remote event has the advantage of reaching a broader audience and doesn’t restrict us in terms of timing or location. We can livestream an in-person event, breaking down barriers for those who can only participate remotely, as exemplified by the Tranquilidade Event. Tranquilidade is one of the largest Portuguese insurance companies; its Commercial Meeting, executed by Europalco, had 3,000 participants and occurred in Porto, Entroncamento, Lisboa (Sintra), and Ponta Delgada (Azores).

Similar attention must be paid to guests and participants when organising a remote event, as with on-site events. Nevertheless, there are notable differences in logistics, venue requirements, catering, and susceptibility to weather conditions depending on the location. Additionally, in-person events often necessitate specific permits not required in the digital realm. In the digital context, we can operate from any location because we possess the necessary hardware, software, and technical expertise to execute our clients’ desires.

For instance, Europalco offers various ways to deliver remote events to our clients. These options include offering a link to participants to watch on a customised event platform or establish one or more physical venues where transmissions from these venues serve as both local broadcasts and reception points for all other locations. Furthermore, we can broadcast on Teams, Zoom, Facebook, Vimeo, or YouTube.


Remote events require
minimal hardware

Remote events require minimal hardware, primarily relying on the right software and the capacity of that hardware to replicate the necessary components. A single computer equipped with software like vMix, Wirecast, Zoom, Skype, or other streaming services suffices for conducting livestreams and creating all the essential graphics for a customised presentation that aligns with our client’s preferences.

Furthermore, it’s crucial to possess additional hardware to establish an intercom system connecting various points or locations where our speakers, hosts, and other key figures are located. To facilitate this, we can utilise an internet slide advancer, granting our speakers real-time control over the presentation on our machine, ensuring the highest quality graphics for the transmission. We also have the flexibility to employ any communication software for seamless interaction with each participant, and we can even provide our customisable platform.

Overcoming technical challenges in remote events

Remote events pose numerous challenges. Maintaining a dedicated team working behind the scenes is paramount to promptly address any online issues and provide immediate support; this ensures that participants on the other end feel supported and connected throughout the event.

Clear communication among all parties involved is fundamental to prevent signal interruptions. Additionally, achieving good image quality is crucial for effectively visualising detailed presentations.Fine-tuning signal delays when necessary and seamlessly transitioning the event to an alternate location to continue the internet or streaming platform transmission are also key considerations. A backup plan is essential to ensure a seamless transition in case of technical issues without causing any disruption noticeable to the remote participants.

 

Engaging with the audience: how speakers and presenters interact

In a remote setting, a solid point-to-point connection allows us to position presenters or speakers anywhere in the world to host or participate in an event. The system functions seamlessly by providing the technical infrastructure for sending and receiving audio and video through a simple call or an SRT connection. Once this connection is established, the focus shifts to designing the stage or creating appropriate windows to ensure the event runs smoothly, making all participants comfortable following the script.

The audience can engage in various ways, including reacting with emojis, posing questions via chat, joining through platforms like Zoom or other services, and actively participating. In the digital realm, there are always opportunities to accommodate everyone; the key is meticulous planning and design that align with technical feasibility, considering the available options.

One notable distinction for presenters is the absence of a physical audience, which demands adaptability in case of technical glitches. However, the entire presentation must align with the chosen event model. The ecosystem naturally functions when it’s a remote event with no real-time interaction from online participants. However, if there’s participation through chat or similar channels, the script should be crafted to accommodate responses with some delay.

Remote networking offers efficiency; with a simple link, we can access data and information that, in a physical setting, might require lengthy conversations to obtain. Nonetheless, it lacks the physical aspect of networking, where emotions and reactions to specific topics are not visible like in a face-to-face interaction.

The outlook for remote and hybrid events

In today’s landscape, events have the potential to transcend our previous boundaries, thanks to our capabilities, expertise, and willingness to explore beyond pre-pandemic norms. It’s essential to capitalise on these opportunities. Remote, hybrid, and streaming options will continue to be part of our future as they enable us to overcome spatial and temporal constraints that we once deemed impossible.

About EUROPALCO

EUROPALCO has 26 years of experience working alongside national and international clients, making Portugal the base for the most important corporate events worldwide. Its mission is to provide creative, technological, innovative, and 100% personalized solutions that ensure successful and memorable results. Visit europalco.pt/en/

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