Your audience are seated, excited, eagerly anticipating the start of this conference that they have spent many hours travelling to.
The lights dim, the show goes live, the standard corporate video plays along with a welcome from the emcee... It's an OK start, but a bit mediocre.
Nothing different or special resulting in a deflated feeling and the audience a bit disappointed. Not exactly a great start for your CEO to deliver their motivational state-of-the-nation presentation!
Too often the opportunity to set the tone of a live event through “the opener” is completely missed.
In the spirit of trying to create engaging events that are both educational and entertaining we believe a creative opening gives a fresh impetus to an event and sets the vibe for what is to come. We know that an audience can sum up a conference in the opening minutes and yet this is all too often ignored.
Over the years we have created and produced many special show openings, but one of our firm favourites, even though a few years old, is the opening to a conference staged in London for our client Emarsys. They were looking for something a bit different, so with their team we started to plan a new approach to both the opening and the keynote activity. And that’s when the idea grabbed us.
We filmed that planning session as the start of our opening video which featured the event team and their CMO. Luckily, he took to his acting role pretty well. The “bathroom” scene immediately introduced a sense of fun and humor which continued as we filmed the taxi ride from their office to the event venue. We then cut live to the CMO pedaling his scooter into the plenary and up onto the stage.
This opening set the scene for what was to come. The conference continued to feel exciting and energetic, using a talk show format to interview a number of guest speakers along with sofa chats, games, sketches and skits.
Here at etm we’ve put boring conferences into room 101. The events we’re producing are creatively different. We are changing formats, challenging agendas, writing shorter punchier scripts and producing shows that we know will connect with the audience. And that starts with “the opener” We still chuckle every time we watch this video back. Take a look and see what you think?
If this sounds a bit like your conference aspiration, then we’d love to chat.