How to Take Your Corporate Award Ceremony Online
At this point, the event industry as a whole is much more familiar with online events. We have reported about the changing landscape of the event industry several times in the past. Going forward, we need to be strategic and efficient when it comes to deciding between doing events in-person, online, or hybrid. Even though for a while many online events were merely seen as temporary placeholders for ‘real’ events, they will undoubtedly retain relevance in the industry even after the pandemic.
Now that countless platforms have come and gone, and a lot of trial and error has been done, online events are getting more and more robust. In this article we would like to focus on one of JTB Meetings & Events by JTB Communication Design (JCD)’s specialties; award ceremonies. An award ceremony is a type of event that has always been preferred to be held in-person due to its celebratory atmosphere. But with no end in sight yet to event restrictions in many countries, you might want to consider taking your award ceremony online as well. It can absolutely be done in a successful way as a worthy alternative to an in-person event. Let’s take a look at some of the things to take into consideration
Why Hold an Award Ceremony?When it comes to holding a corporate award ceremony, perhaps the most valuable function is to increase the motivation of your staff. A successful and regular award ceremony can play an important role in retaining high-performing employees and also increasing the motivation and performance of the average employee. On top of giving out awards, the ceremony can have social and educational functions as well. If you have a large company, the average employee in department A may have little idea of what is going on in department B. Through the event everyone can learn more about the people and the work of other departments. By using the award ceremony to show the accumulation of various innovations and efforts, motivation and learning are all increased. One goal that is essential to keep in mind is that ideally both the people who receive an award and those who don’t, are equally satisfied with the award ceremony as a whole.
Making the Most of Your Online EventThe motivational effects of an award ceremony are fostered by having a large audience and a celebratory atmosphere. In an in-person award ceremony the attractive venue, red carpet, and the visible crowd all contribute to this atmosphere. Now how can we achieve something similar online? By using digital visual media to its fullest, such as video editing, musical cues, and layers of graphical spectacle, you can highlight the excellence of the person on the screen. In the hands of a team of professionals, and using the right platform, there is no limit to the amount of stunning visual tricks that can be achieved. Aside from the ongoing live action during the event, additional video material can be pre-produced. In the case of an award ceremony, award nominees can be filmed and interviewed in advance. In this way their daily efforts and personalities can be showcased in an easily digestible way. This is also where the educational aspect can come into play. It is important to include elements in these video that will help non-award winners in their sales and future careers. Hints of how they can perform better themselves, so that next year maybe they can receive an award themselves. Having a professional team help you craft videos like this will deliver both entertaining and informative content that will delight and educate your attendees before and after the event.
With your award ceremony being held online, or hybrid for that matter, an on-demand recording can be available in no time. This can then be shared by the award winner throughout their professional networks outside of your company if you wish to allow this. It is no secret that social media is a powerful tool, and although advertisement is not your main goal here, it becomes a win-win situation for both your company and your employee if they share it naturally.
An Interactive Award CeremonyAlthough online events are easy to use, on average they do tend to reduce the level of interest and involvement of participants. In some cases, people tend to be "bystanders," just watching the video feeds. As spectacular as your editing and visual flair may be, if viewers are doing other things at the same time, your event suffers. Online event engagement is still a developing hot topic in the industry and an award ceremony is no different. It is necessary to devise a way for participants to feel that they are not bystanders but active participants. That they are also characters in the story, even though they are not on screen themselves. Two-way communication is vital, such as having participants writing messages, clicking to express their opinions, and having the moderator or facilitator take them up and sometimes ask them to speak.
In the case of award ceremonies, you can introduce a voting system for certain awards where the participants decide the winners from among the nominees. From an educational angle, you can ask participants to share their own renewed goals and commitments based on what they have learned from the award winners' efforts. The more people you can engage, the more motivated the average attendee will feel, and the more successful your event is. Gamification can factor into this as well, as you can include a quiz with a prize, or you can add in an award in the end for the most active online participant.
These online interactive features also add value for the award winners of your ceremony. Another advantage of online is that we can receive comments of praise from not only a few people around us, but from all over the country and the world. If you have a large international company, you can connect all these different locations in a shared experience. Imagine having hundreds or even thousands of congratulatory comments lined up in chat boxes and other comment sections. This can give them something to read through for days after the event, sustaining their boosted motivation.
An Award Ceremony from the Comfort of Your HomeLastly, one of the benefits of online events that we have highlighted in the past is their accessibility. People with extremely busy schedules, people that are geographically far removed, and even those with disabilities might not have been able to attend an in-person event. But now they can much more easily join the award ceremony, without barriers to entry. The award ceremony also becomes a bit more lighthearted in a way, since a lot of people are joining from the comfort of their own home. When it comes to the award winners themselves, this can also be a great experience. They can participate in the award ceremony with all of their family and friends right there by their side, while this would have been limited in an in-person event. They can celebrate and share the joy with their loved ones directly, which can heighten their sense of pride and motivation even further.
With the help of the right professionals, even an award ceremony can be a successful online event. Or perhaps you want to go hybrid and connect multiple venues. We at JCD have handled events exactly like this in the past, and are continuously innovating. Please contact us here and we can discuss ideas and plans for your next award ceremony, or any other type of event!