The Lookout #27: Livestream Issues of Event Organizers Driift
Picture this: you’ve planned your event, booked the headliners, and set the stage. The registrations have been flying in, and the media has covered your event with anticipation. Each of your checkpoints are hitting flawlessly, your tech checks have all passed with no issue. The time has come, and you are ready to hit “go” on your virtual event. With a little trepidation, it’s showtime. It feels good to be organizing a live event.
As the lights go off, standing just off the stage, everything looks incredible. The sound, the video, everything looks to be in order. The online audience engagement seems a bit slow, but maybe they are just wrapped up in the show? You begin to see your hashtags trending on Twitter, they must be loving it as much as you have enjoyed organizing it. You take a glance at the feed to see what they’re sharing.
The comments online are fuming. The attendees couldn’t get into the event. The access keys were not working. And the show is going on without them. In a physical setting, they would basically be waiting outside the gates not able to open them.
I can’t imagine a more agonizing scenario than this for an online event organizer, but this was exactly the case that organizers Driift experienced last Saturday as their event, Glastonbury’s Live at Worthy Farm kicked off. Many of their attendee access codes did not work, blocking them out of the highly anticipated event.
Technical challenges can and do, go wrong sometimes with online events. In some cases, you can do everything possible to avoid them, but they can still happen. But it’s how you respond to them that will determine how your attendees look back on things. Driift has given a case in point of how to respond, owning up to the problem immediately, being transparent about it, and issuing refunds. They’ve made the entire stream open and free. They will take a huge financial hit from the technical problems. But they’ve shown some real ownership over a really catastrophic event failure, and all event organizers can learn from it (as well as feel a lot of sorrow for them).
Do your tech checks! But in the case that something goes wrong– don’t try to bury it, handle it with as much grace as you can and try to make it right, like Driift did.
Let’s catch up on some of my top reads from this week in events and the experience economy.
- Bizzabo Acquires Whalebone to Humanize Virtual Events [Intrado] A new acquisition by Bizzabo to enhance the experiences between speakers and audiences in a digital format.
- Eventdex Launches Poster Walk Feature for Virtual Events [Benzinga] New poster feature aims to maximize attendee engagement and transform the experience of poster presentations at a virtual event.
- Groupize to Add App, Virtual Networking Services [Business Travel News] New features allow the opportunity to create rooms and enhanced conferencing services.
- Accelevents Launches New Brand and Growth Framework [Martech Series] New strategy helps organizers leverage their technology and data in a more effective way, enabling more sustainable growth for their brands.
- Project Starline: Feel like you’re there, together [Google] Incredibly cool feature by Google that makes you feel like you’re meeting in person, virtually.
- Zoom Integration, Live Interpretation, Pre-Assigned Breakouts, Audio/Video Previews [Pheedloop] Pheedloop offers some new features on it’s platform to enhance the attendee experience.
- Eventtech platform Experea is now known as Hyven.
How to do it:
- Where To Start With Virtual Events? [MarTech Series] In this piece, by Hubilo’s Cathy Song Novelli, she takes a deep dive into the planning process around a successful virtual event, identifying some of the key things that are often overlooked by organizers.
- How to Keep Attendees Engaged as Virtual Event Fatigue Sets in [Successful Meetings] Feeling the virtual event fatigue? Design your event for shorter attention spans and be strategic with your content. A few more good tips here.
- 10 rules for navigating the new world of virtual conferences [Fast Company] It’s time to push the boundaries of what’s possible with our online events. But don’t overdo it.
- Assessing Challenges for The Return to In-Person Meetings [Business Travel News] With so much conducted in a virtual format over the last year, how to move offline, successfully is something that organizers are beginning to encounter. This enlightening discussion examines some of the techniques and tools that industry consultants and meeting managers are examining for the return in a hybrid setting.
- How to Avoid Hybrid Meeting Mistakes [Successful Meetings] Four top tips for going hybrid at your next event. One of the top at our list? Choosing a professional moderator. This might seem like an expense that could be better spent elsewhere– but trust us when we say it makes a big difference when it comes to bringing your audiences together.
- Top 3 Mistakes to Avoid When Running a Hybrid Event Post-COVID [Tradeshow News] Hybrid events are set to become the “new normal”. Here are some top tips to consider before jumping into the next big thing.
- Die digitale Messe als Brücke zur physischen «Markeding» [Werbewoche] We’ve been saying this for a long time– but a virtual tradeshow experience
Don’t Miss It:
- 3 Ways the Events Industry Can Lure Back Wary Consumers [Inc.] Many of your attendees might not be ready for the return to crowded halls and exhibition centers. What can an event organizer do when it’s time to get physical again?
- Analysis: How the Mobile World Congress hopes to reboot conferences post COVID [Reuters] The cancellation of MWC was one of the first signs of the impact to come of the pandemic on the event industry. Now they’re going hybrid next month with some big plans to keep attendees safe.
- Glastonbury fans locked out of livestream of UK’s biggest music festival [CNN] Comprehensive take on some of the technical issues plaguing last week’s event by Driift.
- Driift mortified following Glastonbury livestream problems [Access All Areas] How event organizers Driift responded to the livestream problem.
- Whatnot raises $50M to let people sell Pokémon cards, Funko Pops and more via livestream [TechCrunch] Whatnot is a collectables marketplace that is adding livestream event elements to help enhance the user experience (and make more sales). It gives a bit of insight into where we can expect the future of livestreaming to go.
- BlizzCon 2021 isn’t happening, but a hybrid event will in 2022 [Gamesradar] One of the world’s biggest corporate gaming conventions has cancelled their in-person show this year, with the move to go hybrid in 2022.
- „Live“ – im Leben danach [Event Partner] “Online events are no substitute”. What should we expect for the future of live events?
- Post-Corona-Ära: Physische Events und Messen lassen sich nicht ersetzen [Kommentar] [Techtag] Opinion piece on the integral role of physical tradeshows.
That’s it for this week! If you want to be kept up to date on the innovation of the event industry, sign up to The Lookout Newsletter!