“We have a decentralized work-force. Pulling people together for annual meetings gets expensive. [In 2009,] our president said this is not going to be able to happen. But we were able to partner with ON24 and put together a program that had a live day. The presidents had a prerecorded session and did a live question-and-answer session. Immediately after their Q&A, with more than 500 people on the chat, they were sold. And we saw that we had 96% attendance as compared to live [annual meetings], where we have about 49% attendance. Virtually, we have a broader reach. We decided to do a refresh in the winter. The virtual gave us two touch points as opposed to one. The live events still happen, but with a smaller group and more geographically appropriate.
—MICHELE SUPRUNOWICZ, senior director-talent management and development, Sodexo Inc. educational market
“We were hosting 200 enterprise users of [event management company Cvent's] software at our corporate meeting summit. We wanted to start a dialogue about how [event] managers choose their hotels. We wanted to open it up to our other clients and industry members because it is an industrywide conversation; and we wanted the audience to be able to weigh in. We've done thought leadership webinars with a panel before, but this was our first time bringing things [into an interactive] virtual [environment]. We had 1,000 people attend virtually. Almost 100% were clicking [on poll responses] and interacting during the event, and everyone in the live audience had a polling device. We showed the results on the screen in the room. So much goes into content generation. It really makes sense to leverage all of that work for a wider audience, a virtual audience that wouldn't make it to that event.
—KATE SLONAKER, marketing manager, Cvent Inc.