Digital Events

Virtual Conference – case study

When Olive Communications asked us to consider ways to enable the UK’s NHS Research & Development leaders group to have their annual summit virtually, we knew this was a vital opportunity to create a meaningful online event experience.

Bringing together over 100 R&D health professionals doesn’t get much more relevant than in the context of 2020. With vaccine clinical trials in the news almost everyday, we knew we needed to provide a great solution and an inspirational programme to make the most of this important group of people’s time together.

Exploring UKRD‘s needs and usual experiences at previous face-to-face summits, we identified the essential elements of high attendee engagement and collaboration opportunties over an extended period of time, requiring a platform that enabled both.

We also needed to facilitate multiple interactive workshops, as well as keynote talks, so that attendees could work together on important topics that could shape the future of health in the UK and beyond.

Finally, we needed to ensure the event’s sponsors had lots of opportunities to highlight their brand and engage with attendees.

Through our development work we could see how the Hopin platform was an ideal solution for the Summit and set to work building the online venue for each element of the programme. We then completed many test calls with speakers to get them familar with the platform, using live video production and streaming software vMix for the opening section on the Main Stage, with multiple speakers from around the country.

The Sessions area was used to host a Helpdesk throughout the summit and parallel workshop sessions on day 2, as well as virtual coffee tables throughout the breaks for networking.

Sponsors virtual booths were created and hosted in the Expo area and feedback and live Q&As were held in Sessions, to enable attendees to come up on screen if they wished.

Pre-recording a fascinating talk from the Chief Medical Officer, Prof Chris Whitty and hosting a live talk from Prof Steve Peters​, acclaimed author of ‘The Chimp Paradox’, were two more highlights for our team, as well as hosting an important discussion about race and racism in the research community.

Wrapping around all this activity, we worked closely with Olive Communications to get the pre-event attendee comms just right, supporting everyone who was registered to enter the conference smoothly, and the organising of a delegate gift box containing tea and coffee, biscuits etc that was posted out in advance to all attendees to have that shared experience.

We believe the results and feedback speak for themselves:

“I just wanted to drop you a line to say thanks you for the incredibly successful and slick Summit. It was, enhanced by the tech strangely, the best and most focussed conference I have attended, and so important at this stage of my career. Congratulations, it was superb in every respect”

“I think it was great. Just what was needed – many of us are feeling a little isolated and stressed but it was great to be able to come together as a community and support each other – thank you for taking the time and effort to support us.”

Do you have a similar need for an online event that enables collaboration and high engagement? Let’s talk and make your idea a success…

Technical Director and Lead Consultant @ Autumn Live Ltd

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