When it comes to conferences, meetings and events, content is key. However, with ever evolving requirements and the increased popularity of Hybrid events, planners must also ensure that venues have the right level of technology to fulfil their needs. Content may be king, but the way it is communicated reflects on the host, the venue and the planner.
How can technology elevate your event?
Conference technology has grown exponentially in the last decade. Long gone are the days when speakers simply presented in front of a collection of slides. Attention spans are waning and delegates are no longer content to be fed information from a stage.
With this in mind, planners require more sophisticated solutions to enhance presentations, featuring more immersive content with informative and entertaining backdrops. This involves going beyond standard PowerPoint slides to capture the audience’s attention using lighting, visuals and sound.
Great audio-visual is about speaking to the senses. It can be broken down into three main production areas: sound, visuals and lighting. This is supported further by staging, presentation, multimedia and hybrid technology.
Audio includes music and sound effects to microphones and speaker systems. While it’s vital to use clear sound technology to allow audiences to hear and understand content, sound effects and multimedia can be used to make presentations more engaging and dynamic. Uplifting or emotive music can also have a huge impact on content and the attendee’s enjoyment.
Visual is arguably the most important consideration in terms of content and presentation formats. However, it also encompasses the design of the space and branding. Just as delegates’ first impressions of the venue are extremely important, supporting visuals need to represent the theme of your event and effectively showcase the content.
Lighting provides an added level of sophistication to events, setting the tone and making it more memorable. Lighting can enhance moods and emotions such as creating a sense of awe, anticipation or inspiration, whilst a single spotlight on an engaging speaker can draw incredible focus to a presentation. It can also be used to theme events with outside lighting, colours and spotlights setting the scene as guests enter the conference space.
Selecting the right audio-visual technology for events
Great AV is all about creating backdrops and settings to enhance your event, as well as the practicalities of delivering content to the audience. As such, planners may have a technology wish list for their chosen venue, ensuring that it has:
- Reliable and fast WiFi with the potential for additional hotspots
- Various connection points throughout the event space
- Contingency plans in case of any power issues
- A high level of technical equipment on offer including lighting, sound and visuals
- Expert Audio-visual technical support on-site
- A variety of screen capabilities to suit various audiences
It’s important to understand all of the audio-visual capabilities or limitations at a venue, including lighting, speakers, projectors and conferencing equipment. Planners also need to consider whether to work with the venue itself, or to utilise a production company with a specialist AV team. As Audio-visual is such an important part of the process, it needs to be planned in advance with the venue so that the events team understands what elements will support each stage of the content. Most purpose-built venues will not only have the right equipment to facilitate your event, but also the knowledge to support it. Working with the venue’s in-house team of experts can save planners a huge amount of time and resource.
Hybrid event considerations
While hybrid options have been around for a number of years, the current climate has resulted in a higher focus on flexibility and hybrid is now the norm rather than the exception. Planners therefore need to consider if venues offer hybrid technology and the quality of their livestream facilities.
Virtual guests will have a much better experience if the venue offers equipment to capture, produce and distribute great content for livestreaming, on-demand and event apps. Generating this content requires the right Audio-visual infrastructure and expert support from the venue. In most cases, simply putting a camera at the back of the room and streaming is not a great experience for virtual attendees. Instead, planners should consider using multiple cameras to show various angles, giving the keynote a more produced feel for online viewers.
With this in mind, planners may want to consider additional attributes at venues such as multiple cameras to record the speaker and content, high-quality lighting and sound, professional editing and production, livestream distribution functionality and the appropriate WIFI bandwidth.
Keble College offers a historical venue with modern functionality
Boasting more than 152 years of history, Keble College is one of Oxford’s most interesting, historical and architectural landmarks. It is a venue steeped in history that offers the best of both worlds – an iconic and unique setting, with the technology and facilities to support a range of events. The College’s two sites, Parks Road Site and The HB Allen Centre, offer a choice of Neo-Gothic, Grade 1 listed history or cutting-edge, architectural design.
All rooms feature Audio-visual and WIFI accessibility with varying capacity and functionality. For larger events, the O’Reilly Theatre provides tiered seating for up to 250 delegates with access to seven additional meeting rooms – ideal for breakout sessions and workshops. The modern theatre comes equipped with individual writing tablets and full audio-visual facilities supporting filming and live streaming of your event. The HB Allen Lecture Theatre offers a Harvard style lecture space that can accommodate up to 100 people with state-of-the-art equipment including projectors, cameras and microphones to support recordings or live streaming.
Accommodating every brief, rooms can be split into smaller areas or used standalone, hosting anything from 8 to over 250 delegates. The College also provides a range of smaller spaces such as Glen Callater, Mille’s and Minnie’s Rooms which feature built in projection, mobile TV connectivity and sound facilities – perfect for smaller meetings, breakouts and workshops.
Keble’s digital options replicate every facet of a regular conference with impressive detail, ensuring that digital participants are fully supported. The College’s WIFI accessibility also promotes the use of event apps to give attendees a complete virtual experience.
If you’re looking for something extra special to round off your event, Keble offers a unique dining experience in its magnificent, Grade 1 listed, Gothic Dining Hall. Featuring beautiful stained-glass windows, long tables and high ceilings, it also features an impressive array of technical facilities suitable for hosting hybrid Gala dinners, awards ceremonies and events.
Keble College offers everything you need to host a stress-free event with the technology, services and functionality to meet your requirements. The College provides a unique setting combined with state-of-the-art audio-visual facilities to create lasting memories for your delegates, whether in person or virtual.
Keble’s dedicated Conference and Events Team understand that every event is unique, drawing from years of experience to ensure your event goes as planned. Rooms with audio-visual functionality are also supported by the College’s knowledgeable AV Technician to ensure that your event runs seamlessly. Discover Keble’s range of AV technology using the convenient room finder online or speak to a member of our team by clicking here.