Webcasting from the Museum of London

The Museum of London asked for our help to live stream educational content to over 600 students in 25 schools.  We used YouTube as a platform, given that this was a public event and we needed it to be openly accessible to as many people as possible.

We provided cameras, audio, encoders and crew and the whole thing went off without a hitch.

YouTube is a great platform for this kind of educational event.  It allows a mass audience to watch high quality video in real time.  It lacks some functionality that other corporate platforms might be able to offer but of course, it is free.

We look forward to working again with the Museum of London in the future and in particular we look forward to rolling out more events like this one.

Museums, Historic and Unique Venues

Over the years, Present Communications have provided exceptional technical support to some amazing events in wonderful locations. And our impeccable attention to detail and the care we put into our work has lead us to being asked to provide audio visual equipment, services and live event support to some beautiful venues. In fact, we were the first supplier ever to provide technical support to the Wellcome Collection Conference Centre after it was refurbished almost 10 years ago. Since then, we’ve been in-house at places like Lambeth Palace and Southwark Cathedral.

Most recently, you may have seen adverts in the newspaper, on the news or on the tube for the new Postal Museum which we are very proud to be supporting. We have worked for years with the staff now at that venue and so we were the obvious choice for a potentially demanding venue (in that it is open to the public during the day).

We are very proud of the fantastic work we do in these venues and we are now calling on other unique and historic venues who might be looking for a new supplier to get in touch.

Lambeth Palace – A birthday bash…

We recently spent the day with our friends at Lambeth Palace and Foodshow to throw a birthday bash for a large multi-national company.  1,000 staff were invited to enjoy the spectacular views and surroundings at Lambeth Palace which is the 3rd largest private garden in London,.  Their evening continued with culinary delights and fairground attractions before a short awards ceremony and a party into the evening.

Present Communications ltd provided audio, lighting and power equipment and technical support for the duration as well as a branded balloon archway and balloon drop to give that final touch.

“We have been a preferred supplier at Lambeth Palace for the last few years and enjoy making event technology work for clients who inevitably have high expectation given that they’ve chosen such an exceptional venue.  Foodshow make sure the food and service received is up to the same exquisite standard and we love seeing clients’ faces as they delve into their dinner”

Social Video Streaming for Live Events

We love getting your message out to the world, that’s what we’re all about. We can build bespoke micro-sites, complex automated systems for user registration, payment gateways and more.

But sometimes, we just want the video online, we want it live and we want it easy for the user. Easy means different things to different people though. We work with many clients who are already familiar with Cisco Webex, GoTo Meeting, Goto Webinar, BlackBoard and more. Or perhaps for your requirements, something like Skype or even Zoom might work better for 2 way communications and that’s why we work with all of these platforms and more.

You have an existing social media presence, your customers interact with you on various social media platforms so why not ‘stream’ or webcast live to platforms like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter, Periscope and Meercat or even LiveStream and UStream where your customers are already interacting with you. It’s pretty easy to get a video from your phone up live on these platforms but it’s also possible to stream high quality, studio style video to these platforms and bring superb production value to your social media presence.

CatchBox – Throwable Microphone – Audience Interaction and Engagement

We’ve always been big fans of audience interaction. Our audiences can often be online as well as in the room but today we want to focus on the room.

Event organisers, facilitators, and audience members want interaction. Often the best content is from the people watching the presentations. The CatchBox is a fun way to encourage conversation, break the ice, get people talking by throwing the CatchBox microphone and breaking the ice…

Present Communications are proud to be a partner with CatchBox. We are a hire stockist and a reseller and can therefore provide the best option for you and your event. We are even able to hire you the microphone but with your own branded casing, making it perfect for high profile events especially where there might be photographers or videographers.

Check out the website to see the options and the prices – http://eu.getcatchbox.com/

Festivals, concerts, theatre – online

The festival market is booming. More and more people are attending festivals with an estimated 32m attending last year in the US alone. 145,000 attend Glastonbury, the UK’s largest festival, every day. And many of these festivals are attended, unsurprisingly, by young people i.e. millennials. So what’s next for the music industry?

SXSW, one of the World’s most famous festivals/conferences generated over 1m tweets last year, showing an increasing blend between the online and the offline, the internet and the physical. And of course, it’s not just music festivals. The RoundHouse streamed the Poetry Slam final live and a number of theatre groups are using platforms such as LiveStream to make their performances public.

The technology is there, the platforms are there. We no longer need expensive satellite trucks and broadcast facilities in order to make these performances available on the internet. More importantly, artists are beginning the appreciate the value that an active online presence creates for them. When did you hear about a singer or movie star who is ‘less wealthy’ because his/her video went viral on YouTube? But you certainly do hear about the singer who made it for the same reason. The UK’s National Theatre have been streaming shows for years and the Royal Shakespeare Society reportedly have a larger audience for one online show than see their shows in ‘real life’ in a whole year.

Now that high quality HD content can be made available online, we’ll see more and more artists asking for their shows to be made available to their fans, providing a value-add content to people who go out and buy their records anyway. Event organisers will see their online presence only strengthening their brand and ultimately, helping them sell more tickets. This isn’t a ‘what if’, this is what the evidence is showing us.

Present Communications ltd look forward to live streaming your event in the future.

New Hire / Rental Stock – Nexo PA system

It’s always nice to get something nice and shiny in the warehouse and even better when we can get it out to clients and help make your events even better.

We’ve recently introduced a new speaker into the hire stock, it’s the Nexo PS8.  Nexo speakers are known within the industry for superb quality, they’re small, light weight and ‘punchy’.

We can’t wait for you to hear them!

Live Interpretation for Webcasting

The World is getting smaller, we are at the forefront of bringing people together using online technologies such as webcasting and video conferencing.  Technology is available for us to make events accessible to people wherever they might be at that specific time.  ‘Delegates’ (in the new sense of the word) are able to interact with each other on mobile devices or at their desks, even from an aeroplane (yes, we have done this).

There are a few obvious challenges to overcome.  The two big ones, time zones and languages.

The first is difficult to change, we can’t change time zones but we can be as flexible as possible with our event and we find ourselves now working on events at more peculiar times of the day.  If live interaction is not required, we can stagger the streaming in different countries.  Or perhaps two or three live events can be staggered throughout the day for the convenience of various audiences.

‘Languages’ are easier.  The stream, already going over the web can be interpreted live with questions and online interaction translated in real time.  This is becoming a relatively common way to stream and something that works really well for multi-lingual audiences.

In this photograph you see a remote location with real time video sent from the event location to an off-site venue which housed our interpreters who were them streamed live in the web.  It’s a big world, but it’s getting smaller.

 

 

Video Conferencing with Ultimate Flexibility – anytime – anyplace – PresentAnywhere

When our customers require the ultimate in flexibility and reliability, it becomes necessary to bring the entire offering in house. We’ve been offering video conferencing bridging and firewall traversal for some time through our trusted and (frankly) brilliant partners but the time has come for these services to be provided by our own team. This gives us the flexibility to change, amend and adapt on site as required and often at the last minute and I don’t need to explain to event professionals how important that is.

Event Management – how to deal with the stress…

Over the last few years, numerous surveys have been carried out which consistently show that being an Event Manager or Coordinator is one of the most stressful jobs around.  It has ranked around 5th in most surveys, only below jobs which would be expected such as military personnel, police officer, firefighter and airline pilot.

CareerCast in their survey claimed that the stress was due mainly to having to ‘reconciling a client’s vision with a successful end result’.  It added that ‘bringing together ideas and turning them into a functioning, large-scale event takes an unflappable professional’.  Some from outside the industry suggest that the constant entertainment, free parties, champagne and canapes can somewhat offset the stress but this is not fully understanding the breadth and scope of the Event Managers’ role leading some 83% of event managers to state that they believe stress to be a significant problem within the sector.

It could be said that the very skills which make an Event Manager great at their job are be the same skills which cause that stress.  Their attention to detail and passion for perfection could in fact be their most useful characteristics whilst also causing their biggest problems.

Kelly Baker, former president of ISES UK is aware of the pressure.  “The event industry is infamous for being inherently stressful, no matter what level of seniority you’re at.” she comments.  “Possibly the largest problem is that you can be immersed in one event with the next three coming over the horizon.  It demands that those working in events are permanently on the ball and flexible to ever changing demands”.

But there is plenty we can do to alleviate the stress caused by our jobs (although sometimes it feels like more than just a job). Sir Cary Cooper, professor of organisational psychology and health at Lancaster University, says taking the time to prioritise your to-do list can make even the most stressful deadlines seem easier. “Look at your in-tray and say to yourself ‘What do I really have to do?'” he suggests. “For an event manager, this could mean asking yourself what comes first: dates, venues, speakers and so on. It’s important that you don’t try to handle this all at once – and don’t get diverted by other tasks.”  Seeing a doctor might also be useful with treatments such as hypnotherapy and meditation working well for those who believe in them.

The first step is to recognise that there is a problem; it’s important to know what the signs of stress are.  Each person feels the affect of stress differently but common symptoms are fatigue, lack of sleep, muscle tension and headaches, loss of interest in work and/or social life.  The ‘fix’ to some of these might seems simple but often it’s easier said than done.  That said, a simple change of diet, exercise and sleep can work wonders.  It’s also important to talk about these problems; start with your line manager.  They might be best placed to help identify where the Event Manager is feeling stressed when that perhaps does not need to be the case and also where work load might be able to be delegated.  Of course the key to feeling less stressed is to remember that we love this job, we do it because it’s our passion and we love the look on a client’s face when everything is perfect.

Start at the beginning… Change those things that are in your power to change and outsource the tasks that you don’t personally need to oversee.  A great place to start is your audio visual requirements and Present Communications want to help by taking just a little of your stress away.  If you are an event manager, please sign up to our newsletter on the right and we’ll make sure to send you a little gift as a thank you for reading our article.