Whether an event is live or virtual (or a hybrid mix), we all know the pressure of getting it right on the day. However, with virtual events there are ways to make life a little easier by ensuring content is pre-prepared & ready to broadcast. Read on to hear from Sandra Collins, Head of Strategic Communications, to see how BCD Meetings & Events has been helping clients deliver a polished performance with pre-recorded content.
How Pre-Recording Increases Quality of Virtual Meetings
Here in the UK, the return of live events is a close reality, but virtual experiences continue to be the reliable option. And globally, demand does not appear to be waning. In a recent post, Virtues of Virtual, we looked at how to make the format work effectively, utilising engagement techniques and shaping the content for your audience. In particular, the section on presenting to camera and a recent client project got me thinking about how this could be much more comfortable and polished, giving presenters total confidence in their performance.
A Seamless Experience for All
Recently we are proposing that more clients consider producing the content for their virtual events as a pre-recorded show. With many presenters being spread across the globe and the need to include audience-generated content or specially created video segments, it makes sense to edit the whole thing as a single pre-recorded piece. However, the challenge can be to make it look live, or 'simulive', as it's now called. To do this we can film the presenters talking to camera, use split screen and slick hand overs to keep the audience engaged and believing they are watching it all as it happens.
How do we achieve this? Presenters are prepped and guided through their presentation recordings which are done in professional studios using two cameras. This gives us the opportunity to cut between wide shots and close ups. We make sure identical event identity graphics are in the background or use green screen and that the handovers between each presenter are rehearsed and shot several times. That means that only the best takes are used for the final edit so any nerves, fluffed lines and stumbles can simply be edited out.
Another great reason to produce a simulive show can be if you need to create different language versions for a global audience. Allowing audiences to select their language preference at the start and have the subtitled translations throughout means no need for expensive and complicated simultaneous translation and broadcast.
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Consistency, Control and Creativity
Knowing ahead of time that your whole presentation is done and dusted certainly gives both presenters and clients confidence that their meeting is going to look great. Consistent quality from session to session is managed in the edit, meaning you aren’t reliant on web cams, home set-ups and possible WiFi hiccups. It also gives the opportunity to bring more creativity into play by using a variety of media including green screen, animation, music and graphics to deliver or support the content. The whole production then has the feel of a TV broadcast news or magazine programme that keeps the audience more engaged throughout.
A Polished Delivery
While for many, presenting live is something they love and even thrive on, presenting to camera is not necessarily everyone’s cup of tea. Our production team are able to offer remote video coaching to help presenters and local crew achieve the best results when filming, even if some people aren't in a studio. Pre-recording takes away the pressure to get it right on the night, plus you can be confident it is all ready and waiting to be broadcast. It removes some of the issues around live transmission as well, because even with the best in the world juggling multiple presenters in remote locations, they can still sometimes fall foul of home internet connections. A pre-recorded show means your best takes are in the can, edited together with great graphics, cutaways, video content and animation. Plus, as an added bonus, the whole show is already produced and packaged to share after the “simulive” broadcast or can be offered for on-demand viewing to avoid issues with time zones or audience availability.
There are ways to add interactivity and live elements into this as well. You can choose to use a live host to link pre-recorded segments or hold a live Q&A at the end of the pre-recorded show for audience participation with your original presenters.
Personally, I’m a big fan of pre-recording for least part of your virtual event, in the same way I love using video in live ones. Anything that can communicate your message in an engaging and creative way to make maximum impact with minimum problems, is always my preferred route. Of course, I look forward to talking more about hybrid solutions and soon enough those exciting full on, live events with large scale production that really deliver the wow factor. For now, I'll take the lights, camera, action.