5 ways to rethink your live experience

Considerations for an ever-changing environment

With every project we work on, there is always an urge to personalize and humanize the messaging to resonate not just at a business level, but at an emotional one. Fundamentally, we believe this is the reason brand experience marketing is so powerful: a belief in and focus on the positive and the personal.

As more and more global events and experiences are canceled or postponed, and travel and congregation bans come into effect, we wanted to share how we believe marketers can be rethinking their plans for when they might not be able to stage an event or experience in the way it was originally planned.

1. Enhance the Stream

Even during times where large person-to-person live events are not an option, brands are still going to need to connect with their key audiences - whether it’s businesses, consumers, or both. The easiest method for this communication is by livestream or video content: send the content they would have watched live to their computer screen, TV or mobile device.

However, to truly stand out, we believe more thought must go into this tactic to make it more engaging. Can you take viewers behind the scenes at your organization to see how things get done? Or can you demonstrate the importance of the messaging - and, indeed, your audiences - with a small yet modular streaming studio for ongoing messaging? Is this better as a live stream, or as pre-recorded content? An example can be found in Bentley’s response to the sudden cancellation of the Geneva Motor Show, where they were planning to launch the Bentley Mulliner Bacalar. They reacted incredibly fast to create a launch film, where they took their audience to their headquarters, alongside two smaller launch events for media and customers. All in collaboration with Set Creative.

2. Think about the Individual

In this context, we mean think about how your audience is consuming the content. Are they watching from their desk at work, or from home? On a phone, a laptop or a TV? How could we make these experiences more engaging?

Could we send them personalized kits to make the viewing experience way more fun? Could we encourage them to view in small groups by investing in meeting room enhancements? From simple touches like popcorn, cheese plates and balloons through to bespoke viewing kits or even moments of surprise and delight, we’d look to approach each audience as individuals, with specific creative approaches targeted to them.

3. Make It more Playful  

We know how much live audiences enjoy being engaged with, rather than spoken at: this attitude should be equally considered in the context of a live stream. Can we send audiences messaging or storytelling elements (props) in advance that become an interactive part of the presentations? Could we build props that respond to specific moments in the live stream (surprise and delight)? Using phone/tablet/laptop cams, can we invite the audience to participate in discussions and Q&A? Do we include live chat functionality or voting elements? Can we utilize second screens to make the experience even more interactive?

Wall Street Journal, CEO Council 2019

4. Faster, Smarter, Shorter

When you remove the networking, the cocktails, and the catering, you can make the core messaging of your events a lot more efficient, taking up less of your audience’s precious time. Aim to clarify the core messaging elements for each event and design and build simpler, interactive content that can get your messages across quickly and accurately - and all very measurably. And give those with the time can dive deeper via linked video content.


  1. Interactive PDFs with embedded video and links to further information
  2. One-page executive summaries
  3. “5 In 5” - Five key points, takes no longer than 5 minutes to read. There’s truth in the belief that ‘listicles’ work: that’s why we’re utilizing one right now!

5. Small in scale, not in ambition

Finally, consider how you could engage with your audience in smaller settings: groups of 10-20 instead of hundreds all together in a ballroom or conference space. Think about the Bentley example shared earlier.

More intimate groups allow for more targeted or specific messaging: could you take key stakeholders to private dinner (or for time-poor C-Suite executives, a breakfast) featuring an industry speaker as a guest, and your messaging worked into the experience? What about a roadshow: could a modular, travelable set up allow you to take your message to your clients in their place of work?

Without the requirements of a traditional live event set up, there are often interesting alternatives to the live interactions we rely on.  Would you like to continue a conversation about the 5 Ways to Rethink Your Live Event? Or are you facing challenges regarding your live event and would like to chat about how we’d approach those challenges?

Please send us an email and we’ll be in touch.

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