Finding fresh ways to entertain guests at an event can be a challenge at the best of times. But entertainment when an event is virtual is a whole new layer of difficulty. So how can virtual entertainment bring your event to life? Read on to be inspired.
In the last year we’ve all come to realise that whilst virtual meetings are brilliant at helping us stay in touch, they’re also exhausting. It’s hard to appear emotionally engaged for long periods of time but in the new workplace ‘normal’ it looks like virtual is here to stay. Luckily there are plenty of ways to liven up the experience and get participants engaged.
For our virtual events we partner with leading entertainment agency Sternberg Clarke so we can offer our clients a range of virtual entertainment solutions that engage and excite but are also tailored to suit a company’s ethos. We spoke to their Director, Adam Sternberg, and asked for his recommendations on how to bring the buzz back to events and meetings through virtual entertainment.
Let’s start with his 5 entertainment tips to ensure you get the most out of your virtual entertainment.
♥ Keep it engaging – interactivity is the key. People are more likely to stay focussed if they’re involved in the action.
♥ Keep it snappy – ideally each act should be about 5-6 mins. If necessary have a variety rather than something lengthy that may cause people to switch off.
♥ Keep it different – if everyone is using online magicians do something else. Pretty much any act in the real world will work online with a bit of thought.
♥ Make it bespoke – many of our acts will tailor their performance to make it relevant to the audience/company which keeps it more interesting to everyone.
♥ Make it real – instead of everything being virtual, keep the event in delegates’ minds by sending something in the post following the event. For example, follow up a baking workshop by sending out branded whisks or a silhouette artist or caricaturist could send the artwork out with the company branding incorporated.
As well as working with meetings, virtual entertainment is also a great way to enhance larger events and can be used in 4 ways:
Tell A Story
Entertainment is a really effective and memorable method to tell a story or communicate a company or product’s key messages. We have a variety of performances that can either be pre-recorded or streamed live that can be fully tailored to your brief. Not only can the entertainment be used during the event streamed live to the participants but also the performance footage can be a powerful marketing tool that can be shared online and on social media afterwards.
Motion Waves. Motion Waves capture your vision and the unique elements at the core of your brand and build it into a visual storytelling masterpiece using motion graphics and the art of dance. Their big show openers are a spectacular way to welcome your audience to your virtual conference and are guaranteed to have people talking long after the end frame!
Hara Hiroki. Combining video mapping, holograms and slight-of-hand, Tokyo-based magician Hara (American’s Got Talent/ BBC’s The Magicians) performs a breathtaking show that can incorporate logos, graphics and motifs making it a great choice of performance and ideal for “storytelling” at product launches or conferences.
Visual Scribe. Our talented artist can create a detailed illustrative summary of your zoom meeting that can be emailed to the attendees. As a bit of fun to close the meeting, they can also create and host virtual Pictionary.
Shadow Show. Take your audience on a virtual journey with a bespoke shadow dance show that fuses careful choreography and timing with incredible cirque and dance skills. Performed by highly skilled internationally renowned acrobats, individual silhouettes are merged to create unexpected shapes which effectively illustrate a story or message and is set to an uplifting soundtrack. Company logos or motifs can be incorporated and alternative backdrops can be used to further tailor the performance to your brief.
Staff could all use a bit of a morale boost in these strange times. Workshops that aim to help people deal with stress through mindfulness or exercise will make employees feel valued and motivated. And virtual team-building activites may also prove beneficial at a time when teams cannot physically be together.
Yotam Ottolenghi. Have world renowned chef Yotam Ottolenghi run participants through a 60-90 minute private virtual cookery demo for up to 20 people.
Would The Real Expert Please Stand Up? Four guests appear on your virtual meeting. 3 are actors and one has an unusual profession. Attendees ask questions to determine which is the real deal. In the past we have had professions including grave diggers, mattress testers and bee keepers!
Jemma’s Health Hub. Jemma is a personal trainer who founded her successful account Jemma’s Health Hub back in 2015 to promote exercise as therapy to
maintain good mental health. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning, she hosts live workouts over Facebook that consist of only 5 simple moves making it a super easy and quick workout that helps hundreds of people start their day off right.
Singing Workshop. Join renowned choral expert, conductor, arranger and author Dominic Ellis-Peckham from National Youth Choirs GB for an energising and inspiring singing workshop.
Also for morale boosting, these performances can be tagged onto the end of meetings to end the sessions on a high or performers such as magicians and caricaturists can be included in the meetings to break the ice or break up the heavy bits and give staff a breather. These acts can also be used as icebreakers for networking sessions.
Tiff Stevenson Tiff has been using her social to run comedy nights / hosting group chats and panels about self-isolation and mental health. She’d be really up for exploring either moderating / MCing / performing for events and has a good tech set up for this.
Judge The Poet. Taking suggestions from the audience – words, ideas or concepts – he then immediately recites a rhyming, enjoyable and incredible poem that links all of the suggestions together. Poems can be funny or serious depending on the wishes of the guests. It really is a remarkable experience to see
Judge the Poet in action and his act is perfect for corporate events, private parties and more.
Lockdown’s Got Talent. Participants will see three acts perform a short 3 minute show. They will then vote on which act they like best and their favourite will return for a finale.
Fortune Teller. Groups are entertained as a whole as Amelie picks out participant names at random and instantly produces lighthearted tarot and palm readings. The result is entertainment that is future focussed, fun and aims to break up the monotony of lockdown.
We have a huge range of keynote speakers, conference facilitators available for these large scale events again to underpin those key messages or simply inspire.
Steve Brown. Award-winning TV presenter, public speaker and mentor. He talks about dealing with rapid and dramatic change. He relates this to his own journey of injury and recovery, life’s pressures and aiming for excellence and mental resilience. Steve captained Great Britain at the London 2012 Paralympics and now presents Countryfile and Escape to the Perfect Town.
Office Taskmaster. If a challenge is more your thing, why not let Taskmaster Greg Davies and his assistant Alex Horne pit you and your colleagues against each other in some wacky and wonderful creative tasks. The pair are already entertaining the nation during lockdown with their Hometasking series and the format
has proved to be a huge success, with participants using nothing but themselves and things they can find in their houses.
Louis Theroux. Documentarian Louis is open to doing online Q&As. He generally speaks about connection with others; pain as a foundation for sharing
and bonding; story telling; non-black-and-white thinking and the human condition.
Q&A With Comedy Legends. An exclusive hour with Kings of Comedy David Walliams and Matt Lucas hosted by an experienced facilitator. The usual format would be that of a 30-45 minute interview followed by a 15 minute open floor Q&A.
Virtual entertainment hosted at a variety of virtual venues