The DMC Advantage Virtual Showcase
In June, The DMC Advantage hosted their first virtual event to showcase their incredible portfolio of Destination Management Companies (DMC’s) to their British client base. ZiaBia had the pleasure of working with the team to deliver their event on Hopin, utilising all the elements the platform has to offer in order to allow James, Simon and Tim of The DMC Advantage to showcase their collection of DMC’s. This allowed everyone involved to best display their location, services and provide the all important local updates on Covid19 restrictions.
The Event In Numbers
Event Date: Tuesday 15th June 2021
Duration: 7½ hours
Destination Management Companies (DMC’s): 18
Session Types: Mainstage, DMC sessions, Expo booths
Challenges we faced…
Time Zones – it’s kind of in the name… DESTINATION Management Company. One of the largest challenges of the delivery of this event was juggling time zones around the world, this was relevant to both comms and rehearsals. We made sure we worked to each individuals time zone when organising rehearsals and allowed plenty of time to receive deliverables from each individual so that we were not to the wire with any elements.
Language – one thing we hadn’t initially accounted for was the fact that Hopin would be in a different language dependent upon the individuals laptop settings and location. This meant that explaining what we could see and read on our screen was not necessarily going to work as it could appear differently on the DMC’s screens. We adapted quickly, finding work-arounds to the problem and managed to successfully have rehearsals with all of the relevant contacts and got them set up on Hopin ready for the event!
Managing 18 DMC’s – this one is self-explanatory. Co-ordinating 18 DMC’s from the pre-event process with a familiarisation session, collation of all assets for Expo booths and presentation rooms, through to the delivery of the event took a lot a time, planning and attention to detail. We ran multiple rehearsal slots during the weeks prior to the event, having some DMC’s come back 2 or 3 times to ensure they were entirely comfortable using a new platform to them. The process was helped by the DMC’s being so determined to get things correct, the time and dedication they put in was reflected from start to finish – we all know by now the success of virtual events lie in the pre event preparation of familiarisation and rehearsals and they all embraced this!
The entertainment sections were arguably the stand-out elements of the event. There were a total of 7 entertainment segments within the agenda, each one being led by one of the DMC’s to showcase their destinations which included a mixture of video format and live broadcasting -
A Yoga Session! From the glorious surroundings of the Vouliagmeni Lake on Athens Riviera, Vista Events broke up the morning with some simple stretches to copy at home.
Crepe Party. Too early for wine, so how better to bring France to you than with crepe making from the Ikebana office just outside Cannes?
Spanish action. Factor 3 Events Spain brought one of the most exciting attractions in Europe, the Camanito del Rey, an awe-inspiring adrenaline rush near Malaga.
Fagradalsfjall, or Icelandic Volcano to you and me. Sena DMC treated us to what’s going on in Iceland and there’s nothing more NOW than the eruption near Reykjavik.
Interactive Vienna. Nowhere reflects the buzz and history of Imperial central Europe than Vienna, Imperial Connection DMC brought this to life for us.
Tango lesson! Live from Buenos Aires, the opportunity was there to learn some basic tango moves courtesy of Café de los Angelitos, one of the city’s premier tango artists and venue.
Cocktails from Malta. Live from the rooftop bar at the newly opened Hyatt Regency Malta, Summer Fizz cocktails to finished the day!
We spent a large amount of time ensuring all the entertainment worked in the various formats, whether live or pre-recorded. We worked with each DMC testing all the technology multiple times over to iron out any issues. We also spent time with the live acts getting the correct lighting, framing, and testing audio.
The ‘host’ of the day was James, Founder of The DMC Advantage, who embraced this fully as he kept everyone fully updated on what was happening when and participated throughout the day with making crepes, a fabulous yoga demonstration and of course was joined by Co-Director Simon in the cocktail making session to close the day. A host role is so vital to ensure the whole day aligns together well and we had the contingency of Simon to support should he need to step in at any point.
A notable mention must go to Araceli and Pablo from Passion for Events who arranged for Ramiro and Sabrina, the incredible Tango dancers, to perform the magnificent Argentine tango. We were witness to their first dance back since the pandemic began and emotions were very high. It was a truly incredible moment to experience and the attendees were very much in agreement.
Virtual Event Platform
Hopin was chosen as the platform to deliver the showcase on due to its versatility and broad functionality. The platform is set up as a reflection of a venue including a reception area, mainstage, breakout session rooms, networking area and expo area – with all of the platform being utilised for the event.
Breakdown of what took place and where –
Mainstage – Opening and entertainment
Sessions – DMC presentation rooms
Expo – DMC expo booths
Networking – A drop in coffee lounge was created and the all important Cocktail bar for the end of the day so people had somewhere to drop in and chat
Although we are well versed in the use of Hopin, from the pre-event build all the way through to the post-event analytics, we did have a rather large hurdle to jump when the team logged in on the day to find the backstage area (used for accessing the mainstage) had been updated overnight. This meant that we had a completely new piece of technology to learn to use shortly before the event was beginning. In true ZiaBia fashion, we took this in our stride and made it work! We even set up an additional practice event to use to test out the functionality of the technology during breaks in the event agenda!