Conference News June 2022 | Page 21

21 Interview

Staying connected
Investing in technology
Getting staff together virtually more about in-house , and went back to the outcomes . What were we trying to achieve for our partners , what did they want ?
We then transformed . We invested in studios and technology , and we partnered up with Zoom . We got our 250 staff members together and built a digital vision . It involved transforming and reskilling a huge amount of our workforce and colleagues .
Meet the Boss , our digital product , had exploded ; it had gone from 25 % of our revenues to increasing at a rate of 100 %.
Within about four months , we came to the market with next-generation digital technology , all based on outcomes . Within six months , we built a next-generation portfolio of digital summits and events . From there , our business exploded . We have grown 170 % in the past 18 months ; we have gone from staff numbers of 250 to 650 . It ’ s been an incredible journey . MF : How has the education in your clients changed now that digital elements are a stronger part of event strategy ? SG : We were fortunate . It ’ s not the priority for us as we go to the market . We spent a huge amount of time with our key enterprise clients , and because those conversations were about their outcomes , the product was not something that we needed to convince them of . We needed to prove how we could continue to deliver or accelerate delivery in their outcomes .
We were huge advocates of the physical and of the digital . I ’ d discuss what benefits them better via outcomes . The analytics in digital are incredibly good . The engagement , the senior leadership team joining those events and
making an impact with those events , staying connected with those , has transformed . So , the conversation for us was never about , is it digital ? Or is it physical ? It was about how can we better serve their outcomes , and what are the products we can deliver that drive those .
It ’ s become incredibly apparent that the emotional attachment to physical should remain for all of us . There are some things that physical will do better , like having a drink with your friends and networking . The modern world is about delivering a digital experience that ’ s better , and you ’ ve got to have analytics in it .
Once we could , to ourselves and our clients , illustrate the digital offering , then we tried to remove the question : is it better than physical . In fact , it ’ s a progression in many ways in what it can offer . www . conference-news . co . uk