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HYBRID EVENTS

Innovation trend in live-marketing

VOK DAMS.Consulting GmbH Corporate Live-Communication VOK DAMS Innovation trend in live-marketing Platzhoffstraße 24 42115 Wuppertal Germany

VOK DAMS.Consulting Corporate Live-Communication

Phone: +49 202 38 907-402 Fax: +49 202 38 907-499 consulting@vokdams.de www.vokdams-consulting.de


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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CONTENTS

Management Summary

3

Editorial

6

Introduction

8

Results of the Quantitative Survey 12 Results of the Qualitative Survey

20

Hybrid Events in Practice

25

Hybrid Event Strategy Tools

27

New Communication Rules

28

Conclusion 30 Glossary

34

Contact

38


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

MANAGEMENT SUMMARY

This management summary provides an overview of the key findings of this study. The individual results are described in more detail in the following sections.

An event is the marketing measure with the highest contact intensity. Because of its reach, social

media are a communication platform that has the greatest potential for brand-, product- and

business communication. To describe this combination, VOK DAMS has coined the term hybrid event. In contrast to the purely additive aspect, the hybrid event describes the integrative interplay of social media and live-marketing. In this context, the term social media is defined broadly. It encompasses not only classic social media platforms, but also all web-based tools. The integration of social media makes it possible to:

> communicate in real time

> interact with other people

> create a common sense

> enable access to the event in a playful manner

> make inferences about the potential target group of the event

> increase the identification with the programme Hybrid events are participant-centred, not event-centred anymore. Hybrid events solve an important challenge of events: the successful combination of reach and

-contact intensity.

Results of the quantitative survey:

75 % (and 64 % B2B) of all businesses surveyed are already present on social media.

Social media networks are the top communication tool.

51 % (and 45 %) think that social media will gain in importance.

It is assumed that the mobile internet has a particularly high potential.

The hybrid event (the combination of social media and event) is considered the most relevant communication measure.

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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MANAGEMENT SUMMARY

Results of the qualitative survey: According to the respondents, the most important success factors for the use of social media are: 1. Synergy effects of integrated communication 2. Enabling viral communication 3. Appropriate seeding for widespread distribution of information 4. Strong and relevant contents 5. Opportunities to design user-generated content

According to the respondents, the future prospects of hybrid events are: The combination of social media and events will increase Technological innovations make new event formats possible Stronger connection of online and offline events More efficient event concepts Stronger integration of hybrid events into the communication mix

HYBRID EVENTS IN PRACTICE Before the event: Integration into existing internet platforms Development of individual platforms Apps for smartphones

During the event:

After the event:

Event interactive wall

Flashmob / Urban hacking

Event game wall

Documentation

Event info wall

Discussion forums

QR codes

Online games

Augmented reality


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

MANAGEMENT SUMMARY

Hybrid event strategy tools:

Social media insights

Social media event monitor

Social media.content management

New communication rules:

Simultaneity

Response

Attention

Authenticity

Testing

Making it part of the communication

Event and live-marketing specialists expect that in the future, social media will be an integral part of any successful event.

The hybrid event is the most innovative trend in live-marketing.

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

EDITORIAL

THE WORLD OF COMMUNICATION IS CHANGING RAPIDLY

The magic word is social media. No other discipline has had such a lasting effect on the field of marketing. Today, technological possibilities allow extreme simultaneity of event and communication, as well as simultaneity of sending a message and receiving a direct response from the recipient. A response that is not only returned to the sender, but also disseminated via social media networks worldwide in a snowball effect. And because of mobile communication with, for example, smartphones, this happens in nearly every inhabited place in the world. It can only be conjectures what impact this has today and will have in the future on marketing specialists. Well-trodden paths have to be abandoned; new developments have to be continuously tested for their meaningful use.

This applies to the classic marketing communication as well as to events and live-marketing. Thus, at the beginning of this study, we propose the following risqué hypothesis: “In the future, no event will be successful unless it involves social media.”

This study will explain why hybrid events are a new dimension of event communication. First of all, the hybrid event stands for the combination of social media and event. VOK DAMS has coined the term to describe the integrative – in contrast to the purely additive – interplay of social media and live-marketing.

In this context, the term social media is defined broadly. It encompasses not only classic social media platforms (such as Facebook, XING, Twitter, YouTube, etc.), but also all web-based tools that can be used during an event, and that can enable a genuine interaction of the visitor (Apps, QR codes, augmented reality, etc.).

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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EDITORIAL

Four central questions have guided us through this study: 1. “What are the reasons for the growing importance of social media?” 2. “What does the future of social media and events look like?” 3. “How are hybrid events implemented?” 4. “What effect do social media have on the communication with our target groups?”

Our study on hybrid events is not restricted to the theoretical presentation of facts and results, but shows how the knowledge gained can be put into practice.

Hence, the following pages shall provide information, food for thought and inspiration for your day-to-day work.

We hope you’ll enjoy reading our study.

Wolfgang Altenstrasser

David Korte

– Managing Director –

– Head of Research –


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

INTRODUCTION

Social media have become a contact point between businesses, brands, products and consumers.

The advantages are obvious. The social web intensifies the communication between people. A large number of people communicate with each other in real time, without any limits and via multimedia. Even on a small budget, communication can be very successful.

While many innovative concepts have already been tried and tested in the classic disciplines of the marketing mix, the full potential of events and live-marketing has not been realized yet.

Tradeshows, conventions, product launches and company anniversaries will continue to take place in the real world, but they will be supplemented by the internet and the infrastructure of the social media application. It will thus be possible to invite participants, to interest them, to get them involved and to continue the dialogue after the actual event. The physical, real event as the strong, emotional primary event is thus extended by an event on the internet, the secondary event.

The hybrid event – that is, the integrative interplay of social media and event – supports the trend towards the democratization of business communication. Communication is increasingly shaped by usergenerated content, shifting the focus from the company to the users. The hybrid event opens up a new dimension for achieving classic goals of an event – in-depth information, more motivation and, above all, a genuine involvement of the participants.

Social media activities can be implemented in all phases of an event.

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

INTRODUCTION

Hybrid Event

Businesses want customers to become their fans – because fans forgive, as many briefings provided to communication agencies prove. They speak about increasing the number of fans significantly, entering into a direct dialogue, asking for feedback or positioning products in the lifestyle sector.

The influence on the number of fans is of particular importance, since/because the identification with image, product and brand values guarantee economic success. Word-of-mouth is the new currency of the 21st century. 78 % of people trust personal recommendations. To take advantage of this fact, experts in marketing strategy favour Facebook above all other social networks.

This is hardly surprising since it is the largest and fastest growing social platform in Germany, as the latest figures of BITKOM show.

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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INTRODUCTION

BITKOM

Social media now link the relevance of information with a recommendation. Users choose information that is relevant to them, recommend it, discuss it online, comment on it.

RELEVANCE AND RECOMMENDATION

Social Media R E L E VA N C E = Added value

RECOMMENDATION = Dialogue live

Social media and also live link relevance and recommendation.


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

INTRODUCTION

Hybrid events solve an important challenge of events: the successful combination of reach and contact intensity. The event establishes the intensive contact to the participant. The number of contacts is increased via mobile marketing and classic communication; the contacts are exponentiated and intensified at the same time via social media networks.

SYNERGY POTENTIAL

The synergy potential is tremendous.

The user-generated event becomes reality. For business communication, it is important to understand the function and effect of social media in order to assess what makes sense for one’s own business. This study also deals with questions about the changes in the communication behaviour of the target groups, the most popular web-based channels and the potential of hybrid events – the combination of event and social media. One crucial factor is, of course, the right content that is of benefit to my business. Only recently did Germany’s most famous blogger and marketing expert, Sascha Lobo, demand, in his usual provocative manner, that the blogger community actively disseminate relevant content. He defines the hybrid event as “a kind of twin – if the right people come together in the right environment, they can inspire each other like nowhere else”.

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

The survey carried out by the VOK DAMS.Institute for Live-Marketing comprises a qualitative and a quantitative part. 1,053 marketing professionals participated in an online survey. In addition, interviews were conducted with 73 experts to ask them about the application of social media in their business communication. It was found that the majority of B2B- and B2C businesses are already present in the social media. The quantitative survey provides insights into the preferred social media platforms and their importance in the future.

Is your company active in using social media?

Percentage of companies (B2B) using social media

36 % No

No

64 %

Yes

Yes

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Percentage of companies (B2C) using social media

25 % %

No

75 %

Yes

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

What social media platform do you use for the communication with your target group? (Multiple answers possible – Numbers per piece)

Social media platform used for communication purposes (B2B) Wikis

467

25

Wikis Microblogs

457 Microblogs

567

Blogs

Blogs 678

Social networks

Social networks Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Social media platform used for communication purposes (B2C) Wikis

467 Wikis

Microblogs

457 Microblogs

Blogs

567

Blogs 678

Social networks Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Regarding the usage of social media components, social networks, closely followed by blogs, are the leaders in both target group areas. The success of social networks may also be explained by the fact that there already exists a large audience. It is not necessary to set up a community – as is the case with a blog or website.

Social networks

25


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

How much do social media influence your communication mix?

Evaluation of the influence on the communication mix (B2B)

17 %

No influence

26 %

Little influence

25 %

Moderate influence

Moderate influence Strong influence 15 %

Very strong influence

Very strong influence Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Evaluation of the influence on the communication mix (B2C)

26 % 25 %

No influence Little influence

Little influence

17 %

Strong influence

17 %

No influence

5% 10 % 31 %

Moderate influence 17 %

29 %

Strong influence 15 %

25 %

Very strong influence

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

While the practitioners in the B2B sector consider the influence of social media on their communication mix as mainly little to moderate, the B2C sector offers a different picture. A total of 54% of respondents already now consider them as having a strong to very strong influence.

5%

10


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

What will be the importance of social media as communication tools in the near future?

Prognosis for the development of social media as communication tools (B2B)

Will considerably lose in importance

0%

Will considerably lose in importance

Will lose in importance

0%

Will lose in importance 22 %

No change

No change 33 %

Will gain in importance

45 %

Will considerably gain in importance

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Prognosis for the development of social media as communication tools (B2C)

Will considerably lose in importance

0%

Will lose in importance

0% 12 %

No change

33 % 45 %

37 %

Will gain in importance

51 %

Will considerably gain in importance

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

The expectations regarding the development of social media in the near future are unambiguous. In the B2B (78 %) and in the B2C sector (88 %), the communication experts expect that the Web X.0 will gain in importance. As the dissemination and success of social networks increases, B2C businesses will reach an ever-increasing part of their target group in this way.

Will gain in importance Will considerably gain in importance


8%

VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

How important is the network of online- and offline media?

Importance of the network of online- and offline media (B2B)

Network is of no importance

Network is of no importance

5%

Network is of little importance

Network is of little importance

13 % 28 %

Moderate network

Moderate network

29 % Network increases

Network increases 25 %

Network increases considerably

Network increases considerably

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Importance of the network of online- and offline media (B2C)

Network is of no importance Network is of little importance Moderate network

29 %

%

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0% 4% 21 % 39 %

Network increases Network increases considerably

36 %

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

The digital elements of social media extend the classic communication tools. Therefore, it can be assumed that the network of offline- and online media will increase. But what do the experts say? Here, B2B and B2C are in agreement again – albeit to slightly different degrees: The network becomes more and more important. In total, 82 % (B2B) and 96 % (B2C) expect that the interplay of both media forms will increase moderately to considerably.


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

How do you rate the current and future potential of the mobile internet (via smartphones)?

Potential of the mobile internet (B2B)

No potential Small potential

4%

No potential 10 %

Small potential 32 %

Moderate potential

Moderate potential

33 %

Great potential

Great potential 21 %

Very great potential

Very great potential

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Potential of the mobile internet (B2C)

No potential %

Small potential

0% 0% 15 %

32 % 33 %

Moderate potential

23 %

Great potential 21 %

62 %

Very great potential Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

The internet is mobile. The number of mobile phones allowing access to the internet is constantly growing. Pioneers of these so-called smartphones are BlackBerrys, iPhones or devices of various manufacturers that feature Google’s Android operating system. Some industry experts talk about an app economy because the smartphones and their apps (applications, software) can be adapted to the individual needs of the user. But what do marketing experts think about the potential of the mobile internet? Here, the B2B sector is a bit more cautious than their colleagues from the end user sector. While 54 % of B2B experts think the potential is great to very great, 85 % of B2C experts think so.

0% 0%


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

Which communication formats have the strongest growth potential in your opinion? (Multiple answers possible – Number per piece)

Growth potential of different/various communication formats 271 631

Print

876

Mobile marketing Online marketing Radio TV Tradeshows

23 249 260

782 987

Events Social media Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Regarding the communication formats with the strongest growth potential, marketing professionals clearly favour events and social media.


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

Integration potential of individual communication measures with Web X.0

Integration potential of individual communication measures with social media

Print + social media

4% 14 %

Mobile marketing + social media

25 %

Online marketing + social media Radio + social media

2% 20 %

TV + social media

35 %

Events + social media Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Regarding the integration potential of classic and new media, most of the marketing experts surveyed also agree that the greatest potential lies in the combination of events and social media.

Soon no event will be able to do without the combination with a social media component. The possibilities to prepare the event, to activate participants, to accompany events, to disseminate elevant information and to post-process the event are diverse, and there are no limits to creativity.


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

The individual answers from the expert interviews (N = 73 experts) were grouped together. The answers given most frequently, divided into target groups, constitute the top five response clusters below.

Why are your customers active on social media?

B2B Top five response cluster

B2C Top five response cluster

1

Invitations to events

1

Networking

2

Background information

2

Entertainment

3

Exchange and discussions

3

Discussions and exchange about products and brand

4

Offer- and product information

4

Information about offers

5

Finding information

5

Recommendations from other users

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

The answers to the question about the motives of the interviewees’ customers to be active on social media reveal some similarities as well as differences. According to the interviewees, B2B customers look for information while B2C customers rather look for entertainment and interaction. Both groups are very interested in personal networking, with the B2B group even preferring communication in real life.


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

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R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

What are your motives for participating in social media? B2B

B2C

Top five response cluster

Top five response cluster

1

Integrated communication

1

Integrated communication

2

Proximity to the customer

2

Updating of brands and products

3

Effective acquisition

3

Word-of-mouth

4

Updating of brands and products

4

Proximity to the customer

5

Feedback on customer satisfaction

5

ROI

Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Both groups of interviewed businesses said that the reasons for them engaging in social media lie primarily in integrated communication. In addition, both groups see social media as an opportunity for closer proximity to their customers as well as an extended market research approach.

Success factors for the successful application of social media

Top five response cluster 1

Synergy effects through integrated communication

2

Enabling viral communication

3

Appropriate seeding for widespread distribution of information

4

Strong and relevant content

5

Opportunities to create user-generated content Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

Besides synergy effects, experts consider viral communication, seeding and content as particularly relevant success factors when using social media. Another finding is the need to learn about new communication mechanisms. Only those businesses that know the communication patterns of social media will be successful.


VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

How do you strategically combine your events and your engagement with social media?

Top five response cluster 1

Social media help increase involvement (involvement)

2

Social media as enabler of events (support)

3

Social media as endorser of events (support)

4

Social media support multiplication purposes

5

Social media support documentation purposes Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

The majority of the interviewees consider the combination of social media and events as useful. Strategic integration potential lies especially in the increased involvement and the content function (enabler or endorser) that social media can offer to live-marketing.

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

How do you combine operationally your events and your engagement with social media?

Top five response cluster 1

Guests can get involved prior to the event

2

The user can create content

3

Social media help document events

4

Support invitation purposes

5

Word-of-mouth increases success of the event Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

From their experience with integrating social media in their operational practice, experts conclude that the benefit lies in particular in a stronger involvement of the target group prior to the event and in the dissemination of information after the event. Thus, the idea of user-generated content can also be realized for events. In the future, there will be more user-generated events for which attendees will have determined parts, even some content, in the run-up to the actual event.

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

R E S U LT S O F T H E Q U A N T I TAT I V E S U RV E Y

What do you thing about the prospects of social media and events?

Top five response cluster 1

Social media and events will continue to grow together

2

Technological innovations will make new event formats possible

3

Stronger connection of on- and offline events

4

More efficient organization of events

5

Stronger integration of hybrid events into the communication mix Source: VOK DAMS Institute for Live-Marketing, Hybrid Events 2011; N = 1,053

The results of the qualitative survey also provide clear evidence that the importance of hybrid events to the communication mix of businesses is increasing, and that hybrid events harbour a great integration potential. However, many marketing- and communication professionals are still reluctant to take the step into the “new world” for fear of losing control. Social media allow everybody to edit or comment on the texts, pictures and videos of a business. Also, the time pressure increases. A tweet on Twitter or an entry on the Facebook fanpage cannot wait to be processed by the appropriate department before being released.

Businesses have to think about the answers to a few questions before using social media:   Who is allowed to represent the business?   What topics are taboos?   Are there any language rules – also in a crisis situation?   In what networks does the company want to participate?   To what extent are comment functions allowed and comments moderated before release?

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

HYBRID EVENTS IN PRACTICE

The current event practice shows that no other communication medium is as dynamic as social media. The hybrid event supports the trend towards the democratization of business communication – shifting the focus from the company to the users. The hybrid event also opens up a new dimension for achieving classic goals of an event – in-depth information, more motivation and, above all, a genuine involvement of the participants.

Social media activity can be applied in all phases of an event:

1. BEFORE THE EVENT Integration into existing platforms

Using Facebook, Twitter or XING for invitation purposes

Multiplying communication contents

Development of individual platforms

Programming of individual microsites or a Facebook site

Asking people to get involved

Asking people to contribute content and information about their needs and wishes

Developing games to increase contact intensity

Apps for smartphones

City guides of the event location

Event guide containing all relevant information

Games to consolidate event contents

2. DURING THE EVENT Event walls Interactive event walls

Via a social media platform like Twitter, comments can be added and visualized in real time

Involvement of guests via opinion poll tools with immediate evaluation similar to Twittpoll

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

HYBRID EVENTS IN PRACTICE

Event game wall Multiplayer games to consolidate messages in a playful manner Event info wall

Photo wall as digital guestbook, interactive recording of news via smartphones

QR codes

Application of so - called Quick Response Codes t link to further information via he internet – particularly suitable for exhibitions and product presentations

Augmented reality

Smartphone applications that allow a combination of the real world and virtual information which are located directly in the real world

3. AFTER THE EVENT Flashmob/Urban hacking

Organizing and implementing events via social networks which become part of a campaign and support the dissemination of messages or an image

Documentation

Pictures or video material of the event are disseminated and commented on via social networks like YouTube, Facebook, etc.

Discussion forums

Using existing or specifically created platforms for follow-up communication and as feedback

channel Online games

Sustained follow-up activities to strengthen the brand image

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

HYBRID EVENT STRATEGY TOOLS

Planning and implementing hybrid events within an integrated event communication requires specialists that are competent in both social media and live communication. Therefore, VOK DAMS offers the following strategic tools, which have already proven useful in practice:

1. Social media insights Social media insights offer information-, strategy- and creativity workshops to increase the success of social media communication. Thus, the topic of social media marketing can be approached progressively. Companies develop a social media strategy and campaign measures that fit their brand perfectly.

2. Social media event monitor The social media event monitor is a tool used for the evaluation of C2C communication on the social web. Data is gathered on defined topics, brands, products and events. The specific focus on live communication is new. Thus, it is possible to illustrate and analyze information about the communication before, during and after an event. Based on the monitoring results, the communication can then be adjusted.

3. Social media.content management The social media.content manager supervises and leads the company’s dialogues and discussions on the social web about brands, products and services or the company itself. The manager acts either as active participant in the discussion or as passive observer until the discussion requires him/her to become active. Depending on the goals, the social media.content manager communicates directly and professionally with the target group. The content manager acts either as private individual (C2C communication) or openly as a representative of the company (B2C communication).

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

NEW COMMUNICATION RULES

This new form of communication also requires new rules for the hybrid event.

Simultaneity – new information has to be made available immediately via the respective social media channels

Response – contributions also require a quick response

Attention – the responses have to be oriented towards the wishes and needs of the users, not towards the intended message

Authenticity – the communication has to be honest and open, it has to match my image profile

THIS MEANS FOR CLIENTS WHO WANT TO BE ACTIVE IN SOCIAL MEDIA:

1. Attention Blogs, forums, websites, networks – there are many platforms on which the target group is present and comments on content. At first, it is important to find out where the target group is strongly represented and what their major concerns are. In this phase, paying attention and listening is the priority. It is also a form of market research. Users and customers talk about services and products. Here you will learn what they like and what you may be able to improve. In the long term, it is recommended to monitor the social media elements. Summarizing the individual opinions often reveals a trend in customers’ opinions on products.

2. Testing Begin small. Make your first step with a Twitter account or a Facebook fanpage. It should be clear that people are interested in people. In principle, they don’t want to become the fan or friend of a product. The communication should make it evident that people tweet, blog and post for a business. A common buzzword is authenticity: PR and marketing vocabulary is understood as such by the users. Those who are constantly trying to sell something during a conversation at a party will not be invited again. Constant advertising messages result in users withdrawing their attention from the provider also in social media.

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

NEW COMMUNICATION RULES

Here, the role of those who are communicating also changes. Who has greater credibility when talking about a product than its developer or the product manager? In social media, it doesn’t necessarily have to be the marketing- or PR professional who represents a business.

3. Making it part of the communication The blog entry, the tweet, the status update on the Facebook fanpage should become an integral part of the business communication. This could include short message that aren’t worth a press release.

Link your social media elements with each other. Tweets should also be posted on the Facebook fanpage or other social media sites. The same applies to new entries on the business blog. Special aggregators like Friendfeed.com and Tumblr.com bundle the contents of different platforms. A user can thus follow all the activities of a business at one address only.

Part of the success in social media is consistency. A blog entry every few weeks, a tweet on Twitter once a month does not lead to the success proposed here. A faithful user community can only be formed through persistence. Despite all the virality, patience is important. You can’t attract thousands of fans on Facebook or thousands of followers on Twitter over night. Social media are rather a marathon than a middle-distance race.

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VOK DAMS.Consulting – Corporate Live-Communication

CONCLUSION

Event or live-marketing is indisputably the marketing measure with the highest contact intensity. It is also indisputable that because of its media penetration, social media is the communication platform with the greatest potential for brand-, product- and business communication. VOK DAMS has coined the term “hybrid event” to denote this combination.

Definition of hybrid event First of all, hybrid event is simply the combination of social media and event. The term has been coined to describe the integrative – not the purely additive – interplay of social media and live-marketing.

In this context, the term social media is defined broadly. It encompasses not only classic social media platforms (such as Facebook, XING, Twitter, YouTube, etc.), but also all web-based tools that can be used during an event and that can enable a genuine interaction of the visitor (Apps, QR codes, augmented reality, etc.).

Advantages of hybrid events The integration of social media makes it possible to: communicate in real time interact with other people establish a common sense enable access to the event in a playful manner make inferences about the potential target group of the event increase the identification with the programme

Thus, instead of focusing on the event, hybrid events mean that the focus is on the participants. This shift in focus reflects the paradigm shift in brand communication – the brand is placed in the domain of the user, and remains only partly in the domain of the marketing department. Hybrid events can thus solve an important challenge of events: the successful combination of reach and contact intensity.

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CONCLUSION

Results of the quantitative survey: 75 % (and 64 % B2B) of all businesses surveyed are already present on social media. Social media networks are the top communication tool. 51 % (and 45 %) think that social media will gain in importance. It is assumed that the mobile internet has a particularly high potential.  The hybrid event (the combination of social media and event) is considered the most relevant communication measure.

Results of the qualitative survey: According to the respondents, the most important success factors for the use of social media are: Synergy effects of integrated communication Enabling viral communication Appropriate seeding for widespread distribution of information Strong and relevant contents Opportunities to design user-generated content

The future prospects of hybrid events are: The combination of social media and events will increase Technological innovations make new event formats possible Stronger connection/integration of online and offline events More efficient event concepts Stronger integration of hybrid events into the communication mix

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CONCLUSION

HYBRID EVENTS IN PRACTICE 1. Before the event: Integration into existing web platforms Development of individual platforms Apps for smartphones

2. During the event: Event interactive wall Event game wall Event info wall QR codes Augmented reality

3. After the event: Flashmob / Urban hacking Documentation in social networks Discussion forums in social networks Online games

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CONCLUSION

HYBRID EVENT STRATEGY TOOLS 1. Social media insights

Social media insights offer information-, strategy- and creativity workshops to increase the success

of social media communication.

2. Social media event monitor The social media event monitor is a tool used for the evaluation of C2C communication on the social web. 3. Social media.content management The social media.content manager supervises and leads the company’s dialogues and discussions on the social web about brands, products and services or the company itself.

New communication rules Simultaneity Response Attention Authenticity Testing Making it part of the communication

Event and live-marketing specialists expect that in the future, social media will be an integral part of any successful event. The hybrid event is the most innovative trend in live-marketing.

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GLOSSARY

Augmented reality: The first applications were developed for aeronautics and the military. For example, a jet pilot has information about his target displayed on the front of his helmet. For smartphones such as the iPhone, there are apps that display additional information on the current camera picture, such as the closest restaurants, bus stops or Wikipedia entries.

Blog: short for weblog, a combination of the words web and log. Originally a logbook was kept on board of a ship to record the distances a ship travelled, etc. Blogs adopted the chronological order of entries. Blogs can be created and maintained with simple technical tools. Costs and effort are tremendously low. It is not necessary to have any knowledge in programming, as a complete web presence would require. Microblogs feature short messages, no longer than a text on a mobile phone. Often, blog entries provide information about links to more detailed articles. The most popular microblogging providers are Twitter and Google Buzz.

Doodle.com: calendar tool. The website allows its user to enter dates to coordinate events with a group of people.

Measurement of success: The success of websites can be measured in various ways. The page impression provides information about how many times a request to load a page was sent to the server in a given period of time. The visits provide information about how many individual users visited the website. Each visit is counted if the visitor leaves the webpage for at least 30 minutes. The unique visitor represents the number of individual visitors. Even if a user returns within a month, s/he is counted as only one visitor. In the field of social media, efforts are being made to extend the number of clicks by including further measurements. How long and how intensive (time wise) a user looked at the content, how active (in form of comments) s/he was and how well connected (how much influence) s/he has.

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GLOSSARY

Facebook: With 500 million members worldwide, Facebook is the largest network in the world. If Facebook was a country, it would be the third-largest, ranking behind China and India in population numbers. In Germany, about 20 million people have a Facebook account. Each month, the network grows by ten per cent on average. Facebook is characterized by its wide range of interaction possibilities and third-party applications. Thus, it is a communication platform, rather than a collection of profile entries. Friendfeed is a subsidiary of Facebook. This website allows its user to bundle information from different social media platforms. Thus, a user can indicate in just one place on what websites s/he is active and follow the news of his/her friends and acquaintances.

flickr.com: is a photo service of Yahoo! All participants of an event – as well as the event organizer – can upload photos of the event on this website, creating a much more comprehensive image of the event. Flickr can also be used for product pictures, because interested journalists and bloggers can access the data at all time and create a download or link in their own online entries.

Google Buzz: is the equivalent to Twitter. The search engine has integrated the service into its email program (Google Mail). Users can send short messages and subscribe to the texts of other users. Google offers the integration of Buzz into its map service, enabling users to find out where a text was composed.

LBS: Location Based Services. Examples are Gowalla.com and Foursquare.com. Photos and messages on Twitter can also be linked to the location of the user via a smartphone.

LinkedIn: is the international equivalent to XING. According to information by the company, more than 65 million members in 200 countries use this business network.

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GLOSSARY

MySpace: is a US-American network owned by the News Corp. of Rupert Murdoch. The platform is a particular favourite of artists, bands and musicians because it allows user to design their profile page to their liking. According to information by the company, more than 100 million people worldwide use the platform every month.

Positioning system: Smartphones know the location of your user. They use a GPS chip that requires an unobstructed line of sight to the sky. The Global Positioning System provides location information about the user where signals can be received from satellites. Often an A-GPS is also used; A stands for Assisted. A smartphone uses trilateration connecting with mobile phone towers to determine the precise position. The location can also be determined by way of a WLAN signal (WiFi). One provider is Skyhookwireless. com, whose system is used by Apple on the iPhone. For this purpose, WLAN hotspots were recorded on maps. Thus, an iPhone can compute distances, although the number of hotspots in rural areas is too small. The biggest advantage: A hotspot can also be located in closed environments such as tradeshows, hotels and airports.

QR-Codes: is the abbreviation for Quick Response. A QR code is a black and white square pattern. The two-dimensional code is readable by dedicated scanner apps on smartphones with cameras. The app can scan the pattern to open a link to a website, to YouTube or a telephone hotline. Thus, further information can be provided on events, advertising, brochures.

Tweet: Text-based posts on Twitter, containing no more than 140 characters, including a link to a website. Photos can be attached to the tweet.

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GLOSSARY

Twitter: The US-American messaging service provider allows posting short texts and links of no more than 140 characters, sent via a computer or smartphone. Subscribers (so-called followers) can read, comment on or forward the posts to other followers. Thus, news is disseminated virtually. Twitter is a fast medium – communication in real time. News on websites can be automatically disseminated via Twitter.

Wer Kennt Wen: The German network is constantly competing with VZ-Netzwerk over the first ranks in the IVW Statistics (187 million visits, 3/2010). Ca. eight million members have registered with the network, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of RTL Interactive. Membership works by invitation only. The network aims to visualize networks between friends, acquaintances, families and co-workers, and to reunite people in the virtual world.

Wiki: abbreviation for Wikipedia (online encyclopaedia). It is the most popular and successful online encyclopaedia whose entries are written by users. The idea is based on the assumption of the “wisdom of the masses”, a group of people knows more than an individual person. The group monitors the entries for correctness, since there is usually an expert who can add knowledge and provide references. The software used by Wikipedia can also be used for business- and event wikis. An author team describes the most important aspects and answers frequently asked questions.

XING: The listed company operates the leading German-speaking business network. In total, there are 16 language versions, with Germany, Spain and Turkey being the core markets. A total of nearly nine million registered members present themselves with their job profile. At the moment, the company tries to integrate more applications to enable users to interact with each other and use the platform more regularly.

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CONTACT

Wolfgang Altenstrasser Director

VOK DAMS Corporate Live-Communication Platzhoffstraße 24 42115 Wuppertal Germany Phone: +49 202 38 907-202 Fax: +49 202 38 907-199 waltenstrasser@vokdams.de www.vokdams-ilm.de

David Korte

Grouphead Research VOK DAMS.Consulting GmbH Corporate Live-Communication Platzhoffstraße 24 42115 Wuppertal Germany Phone: +49 202 38 907-412 Fax: +49 202 38 907-499 dkorte@vokdams.de www.vokdams-consulting.de

www.vokdams-consulting.de

www.facebook.com/vokdams

www.twitter.com/vokdams


Studie-Hybrid-Events (english)  

Innovation trend in live-marketing VOK DAMS.Consulting GmbH Corporate Live-Communication VOK DAMS Innovation trend in live-marketing Platzh...

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