This past Sunday, December 3, 2023, was a day to remember as Be the Change shut down Mall of America’s Nickelodeon Universe theme park from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. The goal? Simple – spread joy and make a positive impact in our community.
Imagine this: an entire Winter Wonderland extravaganza exclusively for underserved kids and their families. Eight hundred students from Bethune Arts Elementary, Nellie Stone Johnson Community School, and Hall STEM Academy were invited along with 800 of their friends and 800 of their parents to spend a day of fun at the iconic theme park. Yep, you read that right – the more, the merrier!
The day was filled with loads of thrills! And no, we’re not just talking about unlimited ride wristbands (although those were pretty awesome too). The event also hosted local DJs, face painting, photo booths, and a free holiday store stocked with gifts for the kiddos! Santa even paid a surprise visit from the North Pole.
The excitement didn’t stop there. Attendees dined on catered meals from local chefs as well as, the most exciting part, a giant donut wall!
Volunteer Power Unleashed
Kudos to the incredible partners who made this event come to life: Mall of America, the Minneapolis Police Department, the Minneapolis Fire Department, The Minnesota Vikings, The Minnesota Timberwolves, Sue McLean and Associates, Event Lab, many Minneapolis elected officials, and Heroic Productions! Without their support, none of this would have been possible.
A special shoutout to our very own Heroic Account Manager, Miles Kipper, for spearheading the site logistics and day of execution to make sure everything ran like a well-oiled machine. Heroic is beyond proud to be a part of events that create lasting memories and smiles.
Hey there, fellow champions of personal and professional development! We’re excited to bring you the highlights from Kitty Hart’s recent appearance on the Thoughts That Rock podcast with hosts Jim Knight and Brant Menswar. Kitty, Heroic Productions’ VP of Client Brand Experience, shared three transformative thoughts on how to become the star of your own show every day.
THOUGHT #1 – View All the World as a Stage & Every Person a Player
To quote Shakespeare Kitty says, “All the world’s a stage and all the men and women merely players.” This profound thought holds the key to success both personally and in the business world. So, how do we apply this wisdom in our daily lives?
Lists as GPS: Think of your to-do lists as your guiding stars. But remember, it’s not just about having a list; it’s about tackling it with purpose and enthusiasm.
Dress for Success: Everything you do helps you create your own personal brand. This starts with the clothes you wear and how you present yourself. Kitty suggests thinking about the people you will be interacting with for the day and “level up one.” This shows people that you care and have come to the table prepared.
Are You the Star or an Extra?: Brant challenged us to think about our daily approach. Are you treating each day like you’re a star in your own show, or are you merely an extra in someone else’s story? Remember, your power lies in your ability to take the lead.
THOUGHT #2 – Be Who You Are: It’s All About Authenticity (To Thine Own Self Be True)
People see through inauthenticity. Kitty passionately rejects the notion of “fake it till you make it.” Instead, she encourages you to manifest and work towards the life of your dreams.
Authentic Armor: Authenticity is like a protective coat of armor. It’s crucial to find your voice and stick with it.
Adapt Without Compromising: Jim reminds us that it’s okay to adapt to different audiences, but your core beliefs, values, and goals should always stay the same. The show must go on, even if you need to leave some baggage at the door.
Discover Your Non-Negotiables: As Brant puts it, “You can’t be authentic until you figure out what your non-negotiable values are.” These principles are your compass in the vast world of life and work.
THOUGHT #3 – Bring Out the Best in Others
Kitty concluded her podcast appearance with yet another Shakespearean gem, “We know what we are but not what we may be.” It’s all about bringing out the best in others and fostering an environment of growth and support.
Acknowledgment and Encouragement: Celebrate the strengths of others by acknowledging their talents. A simple compliment can have a tremendous impact. There is enough room for everyone to win.
The Power of Leaders: Brant emphasized the importance of strong leaders, citing Michael Jordan as an example. While we need “Mr. Rogers” vibes, we also benefit from those who challenge us to be better. Healthy competition can be a powerful motivator.
Choices in Leadership: Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to bringing out the best in others. Leaders may need to tailor their approaches when deciding how to inspire and lead, but the common goal is to help everyone reach their full potential.
So, there you have it! Three powerful thoughts to help you become the star of your own show every day. With Kitty’s wisdom and a touch of Shakespearean inspiration, you’re well on your way to achieving your personal and professional goals.
Let’s embrace each day as our own show, and make it a blockbuster worth watching!
Explore more about Heroic Productions, visit our website.
To get in touch with Kitty Hart directly, simply shoot her an email.
Welcome to a lively discussion featuring our very own VP of Brand Experience, Kitty Hart, who recently appeared on MVP Business with Steph Silver. Their conversation revolved around the captivating world of creating a brand experience that truly resonates with your audience.
Selling Brand Experience
Steph shares a powerful insight right off the bat: “Sales is marketing and marketing is sales; it’s just a different way of communicating.” Kitty wholeheartedly agrees, stressing that the synergy between these two facets is crucial in today’s rapidly evolving landscape. Historically, the age-old rivalry between sales and marketing has been a challenge.
The landscape of consumer behavior has undergone seismic shifts. Kitty asserts that this transformation isn’t solely driven by technology but is deeply intertwined with it. “When sales and marketing work together” Kitty affirms, “there is a more seamless buying experience.” It’s essential to craft a journey that customers want to embark on before making a purchase. Informed customers now rule the roost, turning cold calls into relics of the past. This is where marketing steps up, evolving drastically to cater to this shift. Sales teams must relay customer queries to marketing, fostering the creation of relevant and indispensable content.
The concept of selling to humans, not just consumers, is pivotal. Experiential marketing hinges on a blend of science and experience. Kitty describes the captivating scent of movie theater popcorn that greets you as you enter a theater. These memorable experiences evoke emotions that spur us to share with others. It’s all about cultivating feelings.
Kitty shares a personal revelation about her relationship with selling: “I realized I wasn’t selling. I was simply finding people who had a need for what we did, really well.” This encapsulates the art of genuine salesmanship.
History of Experiential Brand Experiences
The ascent of experiential marketing has been a thrilling spectacle, with brands embracing and unleashing its potential. Interestingly, experiential marketing traces back to the 1800s, proving it’s not a new concept. Kitty delves into history, citing the iconic World’s Fair and how Wrigley’s chewing gum distribution was a prime example of a brand incorporating taste into their experience.
Redefining Corporate Events
Reimagining “corporate events” is next on the agenda. Just because “corporate event” has the word “corporate” in front of it, doesn’t mean it has to be boring. Rather, they should rejuvenate employees’ love for their company and leave them feeling valued and inspired. This encapsulates the essence of creating a brand experience for corporate events.
As the world reopened post-pandemic, the allure of in-person events resurfaced, though virtual alternatives remain popular. Virtual components offer cost-saving advantages, widening the event’s reach. Yet, crafting distinct experiences for in-person and virtual attendees is paramount.
Innovation should take center stage. Kitty emphasizes the importance of having team members receptive to groundbreaking ideas. Ideas on paper are mere potential until brought to life. Steph chimes in, stressing the value of diverse perspectives in brainstorming sessions.
Steph provocatively prompts: “What’s your brand experience map?” This pertains to every facet of your brand, be it events, physical stores, or shipping processes. Feedback gleaned from social media holds the key to refining your brand experience. Kitty admits, “Surprising and delighting people is increasingly challenging.” Ultimately, it’s about the emotions you evoke.
Kitty Hart’s insights on creating brand experiences are invaluable, and her chat with Steph Silver brings a refreshing perspective to the forefront. In today’s corporate landscape, the marriage of sales and marketing, the allure of experiential marketing, and the meticulous crafting of brand experiences emerge as pivotal themes. The journey continues, shaped by a world hungry for authentic connections.
Creating a Meaningful Brand Experience With Heroic
Heroic Productions takes event management seriously. Our approach ensures the event’s message is not only seen and heard but deeply felt, all while aligning seamlessly with the company’s strategy.
To learn more about brand experiences and chat with Kitty Hart, visit her page and listen to more of her podcast episodes here.
To find out more about event strategy, download our Event Strategies Guide here.
Heroic Productions’ own VP of Client Brand Experience, Kitty Hart, was recently a guest on Dacia Coffey’s podcast, Corporate Caffeine. Like a dose of caffeine, the conversation was all energy as they dug into the topic of experiential marketing.
The Real ROI of Experiential Marketing
Heroic knows experiential marketing is one of the most prominent forms of event marketing used today. As Kitty states, “There’s real science behind this. There’s a reason that when brands create experiences that bring in as many of the senses as possible those brands create better connections.”
Kitty went on to describe the main purpose of experiential marketing, and events in general, stating, “Whether we are talking business to business or business to consumer, it’s all people to people, and people want to feel something.” The two discussed the importance of patrons leaving an event feeling something, so much so that they leave talking about what they experienced. And they want to continue talking about it and sharing their experience with the brand. That’s the real return on investment!
The biggest challenge in events today, as Kitty explains is, “It’s become kind of hard to surprise and delight people.” This is a challenge that Heroic knows all too well as many clients repeat the same events annually. The team at Heroic needs to generate ideas for new and exciting experiences for attendees. Kitty describes one area in which you can breathe new life into your event — speakers, and entertainment. Investing in a great speaker or lively entertainment can really leave a lasting impact on an audience. She describes an event in which every transition throughout the day was led by a DJ and another where the client, which happened to be a major beauty brand, turned their corporate event into a live fashion show!
As fun as live entertainment and events that swap traditional stages for runways may be, Kitty went on to talk about the importance of aligning with brand guidelines and standards. It is important when working with vendors and event partners to make sure they know who you are as a brand, so the event makes sense. Otherwise, your event may leave your audience with more questions than anything else.
Win Buyers With Experiential Marketing
Dacia and Kitty switched gears a bit as they went on to talk about how “buying” has changed. People have so much information at their fingertips, buyers are more informed now than ever. “You really do need to bolster marketing,” Kitty says, as old sales tactics such as cold-calling are no longer as effective. Dacia piggybacked on the sentiment stating, “Marketing does so much of the preparatory work to get buyers choosing you or deciding that you are better than the other competitors or options that they have.” It seems that while there is always a need for sales, marketing is now playing a larger and more integrated role in teeing up customers and getting them ready for the sales process.
Kitty goes on to elaborate on how Heroic uses experiential marketing as a marketing AND sales tactic through our Please Welcome events! She explains how inviting clients and prospects to a Heroic-produced event gives them the opportunity to see Heroic’s STUDIO15 and, “see us doing what we do best.” It’s an immersive experience in which, “they get to know us as people, as professionals, and someone who they can look at and say, “Okay, yeah, I could see them being my production partner.” It gives event attendees the chance to “try before they buy.”
Proper Planning Makes all the Difference
In event marketing, Kitty likes to remind people not to leave anything “undesigned.” She says, as a production partner, making sure every attendee in the crowd can see and hear is “table stakes,” yet we’ve all been to events where we’ve experienced distracting deficiencies in these areas. Heroic clients expect the best and that’s what they get from our team. But beyond the basics of AV, many moments within the production experience can make or break the final impressions of the audience. Kitty advises thorough planning through every component and every transition, thereby unlocking a truly flawless experience that your brand can be proud of.
On June 22, 2023, Heroic Productions hosted its first ever Event Planner Happy Hour! This intimate event, intended specifically for event professionals, in STUDIO15 with help from our decor partner Festivities, was planned to showcase the latest and greatest in event technology. As attendees sipped on libations and snacked on crudité, the Heroic team went to work showcasing what was sure to blow their minds!
Introducing the Proto Hologram Machine!
While virtual events, LED, and wearable technology were, of course, all topics of discussion amongst ongoing and up-and-coming trends, Heroic had something new and exciting to unveil: Proto EPIC Hologram! One of the only Proto hologram machines in the area, Heroic is proud to offer a home base for this very cool technology. When it’s not out “on the road” in use for our clients, it lives at STUDIO15 and is available for demos and ideation.
This 54”x87.5”x28.5” box is used for professional hologram “beaming” with high fidelity speakers, 4K video, and a touchscreen. Beam a 3D version of your logo, a product, or yourself from Proto to impress your event attendees. Whether your content is premade or live, using this technology makes it simple for you to capture whoever you choose to turn into a hologram for your next event!
Now, back to the June happy hour. Guests were jazzed to try the Proto hologram machine for themselves and jumped at the chance to see themselves as holograms! The room buzzed and ideas flowed freely as the discussion surrounded the endless possibilities of what this technology could provide in the events industry. From meet and greets with celebrities, to trade show activations, to keynotes delivered by renowned speakers – Proto invites a sensational and cost-effective way to interact with event guests with a WOW factor.
Bring the Magic of the Proto to Your Next Event
To discuss ways in which you can incorporate this cutting-edge hologram machine into your next event, contact Kitty Hart.
A corporate event, when well executed, is a vital tool for corporations to connect with stakeholders. Interactive experiences have the power to create lasting and meaningful connections, and in-person events present endless opportunities to engage and motivate attendees.
We offer various tips and tactics for successful corporate event planning on our blog, but to really show rather than tell, we’re spotlighting Heroic’s own ‘Please Welcome’ event series. It’s a behind-the-scenes look at our planning process for a memorable event. We want to show you how much fun we have planning and executing this series.
Define your goals
An event’s purpose should determine format, content, audience, and just about every other element of event planning. Whether you’re launching a new product, celebrating a milestone, or providing a learning opportunity for your team, every aspect of your event should connect to that purpose.
Heroic’s ‘Please Welcome’ event series is designed to showcase speakers and entertainers who are changing the landscape of corporate events. We want to inspire attendees with an impactful, live studio production experience. We achieve that with a stellar studio, engaging speakers, and our team of seasoned experts.
Choose the right venue
The venue is a critical aspect of a corporate event. The atmosphere sets the tone and provides an opportunity to elevate attendees’ experience. When choosing a venue, consider the location, capacity, accessibility, amenities, and event tone. If you’re planning an in-person event, make sure the space is large enough to accommodate your guests comfortably. If your guests would benefit from an immersive event experience, consider using a studio with an LED wall or green screen capabilities.
Heroic’s STUDIO15 is the perfect venue for our event series, as it provides a prime seat for attendees to enjoy our show, either in the studio or via seamless live streaming. Because we do everything in-house, we know that the lighting, sound, and design of our event will be cohesive. A well-prepared team makes for seamless transitions, synchronized cues, and a harmonious atmosphere for our audience. Venues with an in-house team of capable event production professionals make all of the difference to attendees’ experience.
Strategize the content
Corporate event content is a crucial aspect of driving audience engagement because it’s often what motivates your audience to attend an event in the first place. Plan your content around your event’s goals and audience’s needs.
If you’re planning a celebration, consider entertainers that delight and inspire. If you’re planning an educational event, consider inviting industry experts or thought leaders to share their knowledge and insights. Don’t hire just any entertainer you think people will like. Remember your corporate event goals. How do you want attendees to feel during and after your event? Strategize content from there.
Heroic Productions’ Please Welcome event series features dynamic speakers and entertainers who are changing the landscape of corporate events worldwide. We also provide attendees with opportunities to meet the featured talent, enjoy hors d’oeuvres, and network with other attendees.
Our last event featured Daryl Davis, a musician, author, and activist who is known for his work in fighting racism and promoting positive change. Daryl was a keynote speaker and entertainer all in one–inspiring attendees with his beautiful music and compelling testimony of his great work.
Invest in corporate event logistics
Corporate event logistics should have purpose and precision. Ensure all design elements are in place, and don’t make technology an afterthought. Look for ways to synchronize the various aspects of event logistics, too. The lights, the sound, the music, the staging, the branding–should all feel harmonious to the attendee. When done right, your attendees may not even notice how cohesive your production is, but they’ll feel the difference of your attention to detail.
At Heroic, our stage and LED wall create a stunning and visually striking backdrop for events. Our exceptional lighting and sound design further elevate attendees’ experience. For Daryl Davis’ keynote, we chose hues of stunning pinks and purples for the lighting, with his illustrious musical background in mind. From the music that played before he walked on stage to a subtle green light on Daryl’s piano–we considered every detail to set the tone for the night.
The results were beautiful, but logistics don’t stop at audiovisual capabilities. Good planning also means communicating all necessary details to attendees before the event, including the event agenda, location, dress code, and parking instructions. At Heroic, we also limit the studio’s audience to ensure a personalized, engaging, and comfortable networking experience for our attendees.
Pick a team that thinks of everything
Heroic is a one-stop shop for corporate event planning and production. We understand the value of an immersive experience and are ready to handle all aspects of your event–from strategy to execution.
The ‘Please Welcome’ series is a testament to our commitment to excellence. Our next event will spotlight Dr. Luana Marques, an acclaimed psychologist and author who will provide attendees with insights into mental health and well-being. We hope you join us and experience firsthand the extensive benefits of Studio15.
We aim to make your event a success, and we work tirelessly to ensure that happens. Contact us to learn more.
If your team already knows what to expect from your annual company meeting, or they’ve seen some version of the same PowerPoint presentation ten times now, you may be due for some fresh corporate event planning ideas. Your attendees will thank you for it!
Corporate event planning ideas should be guided by your brand personality and strategic goals, with thoughtful consideration of location, entertainment, and timing of activities. The key to your attendees’ delight is in the details! To make your next gathering one to remember in all the right ways, here are a few corporate event planning ideas and tips to keep in mind. To illustrate how impactful these corporate event planning ideas can be, we’ll be using an example of an intimate event set at a beautiful Napa Valley vineyard that had pitch-perfect planning and execution.
Carefully evaluating a venue’s location is integral to the success of any corporate event. If you’re gathering in person, gather with purpose. With that in mind, it’s important to let the “why” of your event” inform the “where” and “when.” When companies were hosting events at the height of the pandemic, they had to select locations that allowed planners to create standout experiences while also adhering to health safety protocols. Also, sometimes it’s just more fun to be outside. For example, we were wowed by a financial service company and their perfectly executed corporate event at a Napa vineyard. The ideal location and California sun gave attendees a refreshed perspective and a memorable experience.
Timing is also a big factor here. If your vision is to create attendee experiences outside of a hotel’s 4 walls, there’s such a thing as too much heat (and humidity) and then there is the hurricane season. Consider both the geography and the time of year if you want ideal outdoor conditions.
A venue’s layout also affects the flow of the event, so be sure to consider how open or intimate a space you’d need to achieve your desired impact. Have you ever attended a breakout session in a rock climbing gym? You wouldn’t forget it if you did. How about an early yoga lesson on the beach? Don’t be afraid to get creative with the space!
Get creative with entertainment
Strategy should guide all corporate event decision-making, and entertainment is no different. Whether you’re hiring a musician to play between work sessions or a comedian to roast the CEO at your awards show, unique entertainment choices are a great way to engage and inspire your attendees. Think about what kind of performance might help your employees break out of their everyday mindset. Could they use a laugh right now? Or do they want to be inspired? The difference between the success of a stand-up comic or a motivational speaker could lie in the needs of your attendees.
Whatever talent you might hire, the best way to make corporate entertainment unique is to incorporate it in a creative and surprising way. If you’re hiring a band, consider asking them to write an original song specifically for the event. If you’re hiring a magician, think about which team members have great personalities for being on-stage assistants—it could add an extra touch of fun and connection to the performance.
Make it interactive
Interactive performances and events make an impact. Any opportunity to directly involve your attendees is only going to elevate the event. This could be as simple as inviting attendees on stage or offering attendees to “drink and draw” along with an instructor.
Going back to the winery event example, a highlight was the team of jugglers that performed at the award ceremony. Some jugglers were dressed as waiters, and, midway through the presentations, began tossing wine bottles about as if by accident. This fun and unexpected surprise kept attendees engaged throughout the ceremony. Creative entertainment choices like this excite your attendees and have them looking forward to the company’s next event for months to come.
Personalize the experience
Another great way to keep your attendees engaged is to design the experience with them specifically in mind. What do your attendees need? Let that need guide the event idea. If your employees haven’t met yet, and they need a team-building exercise, an escape room might be a fun corporate event planning idea for the team. Or even if you know that you need your attendees sitting in chairs all day, there are ways to personalize that experience.
Let’s go back to the winery example one more time (we really loved this event!). As the attendees moved through a beautiful winery all day, enjoying the wine country scenery and juggling waiters, they were also each given a personalized wine bottle. The wine was delicious, the inscriptions on their labels were thoughtful, and no one left the event feeling like a number. It’s attention to detail like this that makes all of the difference for event planners’ success.
Don’t forget the fun
When designing an event, consider your attendees’ feelings and how you want them to feel. Let the meeting agenda and your unique event activities evolve from there, and whatever you do—don’t forget the fun. It’s safe to assume everyone wants to let their hair down every once in a while, and a unique corporate event planning idea has the power to transform your attendees’ mindset.
We’ve all seen the same presentations over and over. We’ve all sat in familiar rows of chairs, facing a seemingly endless lineup of corporate speakers. For your next event, consider flipping typical event planning ideas on their heads. When you think outside of the box, you’ll inspire your attendees to do the same.
If you’re looking for a corporate event production team that thinks of everything, contact Heroic today.
On Thursday, August 18, Heroic Productions launched a brand new, innovative event series called “Please Welcome”. Designed specifically for corporate leaders, marketing, and event professionals, STUDIO15 @ Heroic buzzed with the sights and sounds of live production, in front of a studio audience. But don’t worry! If you weren’t there, you can catch the broadcast in a few weeks.
“Please Welcome” is a quarterly experience, created by the event strategists at Heroic. Kris Campbell, VP of Speakers & Entertainment, explained that one of many challenges event professionals face today is selecting and booking the best talent that represents, enhances, and punctuates overall event objectives. There are many, many options. And often, while conducting an online search, the one that rings your bell is on the page you didn’t get to because you ran out of search-steam. That’s exactly why working with a talent strategist like Heroic is the answer.
As an example of how the right talent enhances a brand experience, Heroic welcomed and presented Denise Soler Cox onto the inaugural “Please Welcome” stage. At the onset of the event, Kitty Hart, Heroic’s VP of Brand Experience, told us we were in for something special. And she was right.
Denise Soler Cox is a first-generation Latina, award-winning filmmaker, podcaster, and keynote speaker. She floated onto the stage with grace and wrapped her arms around the audience with a beautiful explanation of what it means to create a sense of belonging; something she realized is a deficiency for many.
Resonating with corporate leaders all over the country, Denise is in high demand as she poses the question, “How can we ask people to be their ‘full selves’ at work if we don’t provide a space for people to experience Belonging?” As leaders understand that DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) is now DEIB (B for belonging), there is still much to be done to help people understand the critical nuance needed to authentically build the feeling of belonging for EVERYONE.
If you’ve ever driven with kids in the car, you’re familiar with the question: “Are we there yet?” That’s what it has felt like the last two years for anyone who plans corporate events or develops the corporate event strategy.
With joy in our hearts, we can finally proclaim: Yes! We’re there!
Now it’s time for a new set of questions. Like, how have corporate events changed? What are the latest corporate event trends? And, what’s the best way to get started planning?
We’re here to address these questions and more, including:
How to reignite your corporate event strategy
What’s trending in corporate events
How to create memorable brand experiences
How to start planning your next corporate event
How to measure your event success
How to reignite your corporate event strategy
Prior to the pandemic, in-person events were the gold standard for brands. It’s almost as if the event wasn’t live, in-person, it didn’t happen at all. As a result, virtual events, which existed long before the pandemic, often took a backseat to in-person events.
That sentiment is shifting big time.
Virtual events have hit their stride. In fact, we believe in-person events that include a virtual offering play an integral role in any corporate event, especially when you need to:
Reach a bigger audience
Accommodate folks who are unable to attend in-person
Manage your travel budget
What’s trending in corporate events? (How to give it that wow-factor)
Every day, we talk to brand and marketing leaders about their event goals and objectives and two things keep bubbling to the top of those conversations.
People want connection
Whether it comes in the form of networking with new people or reconnecting in person with longtime colleagues, the trend is all about establishing and strengthening relationships.
This is especially true for companies that went from 100 percent in-office to 100 percent remote in a very short period of time. When planning your corporate event, be strategic with your agenda structure and create space and creative tactics to encourage connection, teamwork and celebration.
People want to have fun
After two years of staring at laptop screens, people are ready for something different – they’re ready to meet in-person. We’re seeing more interest in laughter, inspiration, balance, real-talk and fun.
Bringing in outside speakers and talent that are aligned with your event goals create that momentous experience for your audience. While the phrase “surprise and delight” may seem overused, this is definitely the time for it.
How to create memorable brand experiences (on stage, on-screen, or both)
Lasting impressions rarely happen by accident. They take vision, creativity and lots of planning. Showing up strong at your next event starts with nailing your goals and objectives. This is the springboard for your ever-so-important event strategy.
What’s the format?
Shakespeare couldn’t have predicted just how true his “all the world’s a stage” line would be in today’s world. The stage can be physical, like at an in-person corporate event. Or the stage can be “on-screen,” like during a virtual event.
What options does the format offer for branding?
In-person events offer more familiar opportunities for communicating your brand in the overall event design – think scenic elements, graphic design, signage, collateral and swag. All of these remain important and should be part of your overall event strategy as they impact the experience you are creating for your audience.
Virtual corporate events have plenty of branding opportunities, too.
When we produce events for the small screen, we use what’s called a virtual platform to deliver the event. This virtual event technology is an intricate component of your event strategy. It not only sets your event apart from everyday Zoom or Teams calls, it supports the content and experience you are creating and managing.
Virtual events offer many opportunities to let your brand shine. From your pre-communications strategy to registration, to the login screen and pre-show lobby, to your mainstage, breakout rooms and so on – integrating your brand into the design of all touch points is critical.
Your audience should know immediately that they are at your event, just as you do when you see an Apple launch or the NFL draft, as every detail supports the brand and the goals and objectives of the event.
A friendly word of caution
Maybe it was living through two years of Zoom calls from home, but we’ve noticed audiences have a low tolerance for technical mishaps, poor quality, awkward transitions and lackluster production. Be sure to invest the time and dollars to make your next event feel special (whether it’s in-person, virtual, or hybrid). Your audience has been waiting for it.
How to start planning your next event
We all appreciate the gift of time, and that’s certainly true in the events industry. Where possible, our clients bring us into the planning process early. We’ve earned a seat at the table by bringing an objective clarity to their event goals and by providing a seasoned, strategic approach to planning and execution.
It is beneficial to nail down essential considerations early, especially:
This is driven by many factors including the type of meeting (incentive will drive the location/type of hotel), demographics of your audience (east/west coast, etc), airport accessibility, union/non-union labor city, expo component, your budget, etc.
This is critical to your event flow so approach this with a concise list of “must haves,” including: quantity and size of breakout rooms, General Session square footage/shape/ceiling heights with no low-hanging chandeliers, your preferred seating layout, staging/scenic footprint, flow of meeting space, outside meeting space, reception areas, and now more important than ever – the hotel guidelines and budget add-ons.
Involve your production partner as you consider a venue for your event and include them on your initial and follow-up site visits. Their view is a combination of technical and production savvy and a discriminating view on what is possible to execute at a specific venue. Your production partner sees different things during site visits that should be factored into the technical budget. They will inquire about rig points, power, load-in restrictions and can also provide specific requests before a contract is signed.
If event marketing is part of your strategy, you know the importance of making the event unforgettable. That’s where working with an outside partner can make all the difference in delivering a unique experience that drives your messaging and goals. They can:
Help you articulate your goals and objectives
Focus on understanding your target audience and what drives them
Discuss problems your audience may have directly or indirectly related to the event subject matter
Drive creative ideas and content that support your brand, messaging and engage your audience
Ask hard questions like – what do you want your audience to feel, to do after attending your event
Take broad ideas and funnel them down to what is impactful
Work with you on timeline management
Timeline for planning a corporate event?
There’s no magic number or foolproof equation. It all depends on what you’re trying to achieve and the support and resources. For example:
Do you need to bring people together quickly for an announcement? Or are you sharing a new strategic direction for the company?
Is it a brand-new product launch? Or the next iteration of an existing product?
Is it a one-time special recognition event? Or an important fundraiser?
Is your approval process straightforward or multi-layered with many stakeholders?
Is accessibility to leadership’s calendar accessible or impossible?
Do you have a budget to support partnering with an agency to produce and execute your meeting or are you driving solo?
Measuring the success of your corporate event
No matter how meaningful an event is, it also needs to deliver measurable value to the business. Who doesn’t want to show ROI to their leadership? Which route you take to measure your results depends on the goals and the corporate event strategy you established. For example:
Traditional measures – You can follow up with your audience using an email poll or survey.
Technology – Virtual event platforms provide a wide variety of stats and data about your event – like how often people engage on the platform, which breakouts they attended, or which content they reacted to.
Content-related goals – Let’s say you have an annual sales meeting. You could track customer engagement or retention after the event. If you introduce a new sales process, you can measure whether you have an uptick in sales after three or six months. If you host a state of the business update, you can follow it up with interviews.
It’s your move
We hope these corporate event tips and insights are helpful – especially as you’re thinking ahead to your next event. Let’s chat if you get stuck in the process. Our team would love to help you reignite your corporate event strategy.
Recently, we reached a point in our journey where we felt our own brand needed a refresh to more accurately represent who we are, what we do.
While we are known by many for expert audio, video, and lighting services, we’ve become much more than that. Organically and over time, we’ve grown into a one-stop, event creation and production company that unifies audiences by amplifying their stories.
It looks a little different around here at Heroic
From the beginning, we’ve been deeply aware of how the power of performance and presentation can transform an experience. Our new brand identity reflects the idea of transformation while serving as a reminder that every event we design and produce ensures our clients emerge as Heroes of their own story.
That’s why the central element in our new branding is a hero. The style is based on a tangram – one of those puzzles that creates a shape – and is grounded in the concept of transformation.
The logo represents how our experience uniquely positions us to reconfigure and rearrange our expertise into the best order to help you tell a story.
To build on the idea of transformation, we also created a branded pattern made from the shape of our hero’s cape.
Then, we chose a modern font and fresh color palette to round out our new look. The color green is bold and exciting, just like the experiences we create.
Every brand has a story
Every brand has a story – a reason for being and a vision for moving forward. Sharing these stories and future visions is where Heroic comes in.
When we create an event for our clients, we find the details and themes to amplify, strategically weaving the most important concepts throughout every moment. It’s the core of what we do: making a brand’s story shine through deep immersion, ingenious creative, and transformative experiences.
By rebranding, we did the same thing for ourselves.
Throughout the creative process, we worked hard to stay true to our roots, authentic to what makes us great, and consistent in always buttoning up every detail, because even the smallest touchpoints matter.
While our new look is different, our mission remains the same: to rally your stakeholders, team members, and valued partners – moment by moment, person by person – to take the future by storm, making each person a hero in their own story, inspired by the best in all of us.
Ready to amplify your story?
Are you at a place in your company’s journey where you need to create a momentous experience? Do you want the kind of big beginning that integrates seeds of ideas, strategies for change, and sparks of success?
Heroic is a complete creative event production company that can amplify your brand strategy through impactful in-person and virtual experiences. Known for being incredibly passionate about our work, we’re also experts at turning key information and initiatives into entertaining and illuminating experiences.
Our clients bolster understanding, rally stakeholders, and energize action—all as a natural outcome of unforgettable, flawlessly executed events.
Nothing is more important to the success of an event than partnering with a company who can ensure your visual and audio components are executed flawlessly. But, with so many companies out there, how do you decide which one is right for you and your event?
The key word here is partner. The right event production company will be more than a supplier of equipment and labor. You can take advantage of their years of experience to get sound advice and new ideas that can make your event more interesting, fun, or all-around impressive. Choose the right partner, and you can actually look forward to your event instead of worrying.
What should you look for?
What is the company’s track record? Do they have solid testimonials? What’s their experience working events similar to yours in size, venue, and complexity? Don’t make assumptions about what they can and cannot do because services and capabilities vary from one company to another. How much of their capacity is in-house, and how much do they outsource?
It takes more than efficient AV set-up, execution, and tear-down to produce a seamless, memorable event. It takes artistry and imagination. Can they think outside the box and offer suggestions that will improve the vision of your event or add technological elements you’d never have thought up yourself?
Willingness to work within your budget
Everyone has a budget regardless of the size or scope of their event. The right partner will have your back here, with no hidden fees or last-minute surprises. They’ll help you get maximum bang for your buck, advising when it’s best to spend more money and where you can cut costs without compromise.
Choose a partner who is a good listener and an eager participant — excited to assist with planning your event as well as execution. That strengthens the quality of your production, eliminates misunderstandings, and makes ongoing communication easier. Equally important, it ensures the final event meets your business goals in ways that clearly communicate your brand.
Teamwork and a Great Culture
Camaraderie counts. You want a partner whose people work well and happily with each other because how they function as a team affects the work they do for you. Do you like them? You’ll be spending a lot of time together, much of it under stressful conditions. You want fabulous results, but getting there shouldn’t be torturous. So, how’s their sense of humor and “cultural vibe?”
You’ll find that not every event production company is a good fit for you or your project. Frankly, if you don’t like them or believe in their expertise and talent, you won’t trust them. And trust and flexibility are critical when you’re producing any event. Choose well, though, and you’ll find a long-term partner who will be a multi-value resource when it comes to creating flawless, unforgettable future events.
It is with great pride that I introduce you to a newly designed and updated Heroic Productions brand identity! After 18 wildly exciting and successful years, we decided it was time for this cobbler to get new shoes and better tell our own story.
Having supported and partnered with our clients over the years through brand launches and countless monumental events, we have a wonderful, new story to tell. After all, turning 18 is a pivotal “coming of age”. In lieu of a raise-the-roof party…as most 18 year olds do, we chose to mark the occasion with a rebrand that more effectively represents Heroic Productions, today.
Those who know us from “back in the day” may remember us on stage as Temporary Heroes, a popular R&B band. We called ourselves “Temporary” because once the gig was over, it was each of us musicians that were responsible for striking the set, packing equipment, and schlepping the gear home. For the few hours on stage, we were everyone’s hero as they sang and danced, and simply enjoyed the sights and sounds.
The ethic of intense practice and crafting a performance to perfection is what led to the creation of Heroic Productions. Over the past 18 years, we’ve amplified and illuminated event experiences on countless stages and virtual environments. Our work has taken us all over the world proudly supporting event production needs for many of Minnesota’s top 100 companies as well as national Fortune 500 companies, ensuring that their messages are perfectly seen, heard, and remembered. But audio, video, and lighting were just the beginning. Today, we are a one-stop event creation and production company that unifies audiences by amplifying their stories. We help make a brand’s story shine – in person or virtually through ingenious creative and immersive experiences.
We may look different today but our mission remains the same: to rally stakeholders, team members and valued partners – moment by moment, person by person – to take the future by storm, making each a hero in their own story, inspired by the best in all of us.
I expect some of you may say, “Well, it’s about time, Jon!”
My response? This team is just getting started. Our new brand identity is a future-focused signal of our ever changing world, and a reminder that every event we design and produce ensures that our client walks away the Hero as audiences leave inspired and wanting more.
Thank you for being part of Heroic’s past and inspiration for our future, together.
Now, take a look around our new website and reach out to the Heroic team when you’re ready to make your next event legendary!
Combining virtual and in-person events is more than a trend – it’s the new normal. Here’s what you need to know about hybrid event planning.
You’ve probably heard this before. Here’s a shocker: The shift to hybrid event planning is a great opportunity!
Webinars, online conferences, and virtual events serve specific purposes because of flexibility and safety – in-person and live experiences engage people differently. And in person, you can be 100% confident everyone is wearing pants!