With all that shattered glass on the floor from the historic election last week, it's time to take the hammer to the glass wall... the one thing you and your sales team think is keeping you from making genuine connections in 2020: The Screen.
Hey, guess what?
You've got it all wrong.
If you've ever worked with global colleagues, you know that you can build incredible working relationships without ever meeting in person. If you've ever collaborated with a partner or client on a solution by phone or VOIP, you know it's possible. If you've ever called a family member to wish them happy birthday, you know that you can still connect by voice alone. If you ever called your friends after Thursday Night Must-See-TV to discuss Ross and Rachel, you know that you can even connect over the same thing while not together! So what's so different about 2020?
All of those examples of connection happened over a shared experience. A project you were working on together. A moment in time that you had in common. But what they *didn't* happen over was a webinar with slides and a talking head. Or a recorded panel discussion. If you think you have to have 15,000 people together at the same time to make that shared experience happen, think again. Millions of people watched Game of Thrones asynchronously ("Don't tell me what Daenerys did, I haven't watched this week's episode yet!"). I didn't watch Tiger King until WEEKS after my friends had chosen sides on the Carol Baskin-murderer/not murderer-debate, but when I did... I felt connected! My experience was shared. I was part of something.
Rethink your content.
I'm seeing a trend toward making your large event into a multi-weeks-long experience. Unfortunately, our screen-time attention span is pretty sure to not support that concept. Taking your 3 day’s worth of content and spoon feeding it out over 3 weeks does not increase connection with your audience.
What increases connection with your audience? An emotional moment. If you can evoke one of these, you will create connection: anger, fear, sadness, disgust, surprise, anticipation, trust and joy.
Think through the shows you've watched and the experiences you've had. Fyre Festival? The release of the next Harry Potter book? The announcement that Firefly was being canceled? Williams and Kate's wedding (or Harry and Meghan's)? Election week? You probably didn't have any of those experiences at the same time as anyone else, but they created an emotional response that made you connect with someone over it (by phone, in person, or even just on Facebook!).
How to fix it.
What makes a virtual event different from content marketing? Virtual events are just digital campaigns with the added benefit of creating connections because people had a shared experience. Don't forget that part.
If you've ever been with us on an episode of Haute Dokimazo Unrestricted Hauteness, you've had a shared experience - maybe you were there when Paul kissed the Blarney Stone live on Zoom! Or maybe you watched as we walked on the rooftops of the Grand Bazaar in Marrakech. Or maybe you watched as Hashim played Frogger with his life while crossing the street in Morocco, or when Habib introduced us to Anafi the Camel! Or maybe you fell in love with the mountains of Patagonia as Naheul drank whiskey and introduced us to his daughter while at the top of a mountain. Or perhaps you were with us when met fell in love with Lilly the giraffe in Kenya! 100% of these experiences were through a screen, but we all feel like we know these people in all corners of the world and would absolutely be able to hug them at first site. We broke through the glass wall.
Maybe you participated in our Age of Conversation Summit, volunteering to help make it come to life or joining us in one of the sessions to talk, commiserate, or share in the content and talk about it together. It wasn't even about the content, to be honest - the feeling everyone left with was one of community. A shared creation. A project they were all part of bringing to life. Over 500 people now feel connected because they were part of it in some way that was meaningful to them.
For Haute Dokimazo our point of view, our secret sauce, the core of what we do is this: We create shared experiences that evoke an emotional response, and are anchored in conversation to create genuine connections that drive profitable relationships.
Learn it. Do it. Be it.
We don't hoard our secret sauce. We share it with the world. Here are the three ways you can get access to it:
Come to one of our experiences (virtually or in person in 2021 - join us next at SPINCon on December 1st or at an Unrestricted Hauteness!).
Bring us in to show your team how they can do it.
Hire us to create them for you.
We know that shared experiences that evoke an emotional response and are anchored in conversation create genuine connections. We are on a mission to bring back humanity and conversation to events and virtual experiences. Join us by signing up for our mailing list, The #HugLife.
Liz Lathan, CMP is co-founder and CEO of Haute Dokimazo, a "spontaneous think tank” company that bridges the gap between sales ad marketing by creating shared experiences, anchored in conversation, that drive genuine connections. Haute Dokimazo is part of Haute Companies, a family of companies that believe in human connection, from events to media (podcasts, videos, and more) to direct mail to swag to entertainment talent management to strategy session facilitation. Contact Liz at firstname.lastname@example.org