The art of getting more from less - Fusing the real and the virtual to transform the experience

June, 11 2024

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The pandemic changed everything. Four years on, it almost goes without saying. In fact, it sounds like something of an understatement as we think back to the “unprecedented times” we lived and worked through. Yet, as the global events sector continues to reinvent and reboot itself for the post-pandemic world, its ripple effects live on. Together with another major driver of business behaviour – sustainability – it is shaping how we provide global brands with complex, multi-layered event experiences that endure long after the stand has been shipped to the next location.

Two drivers. One solution. 
In our post-Covid, sustainability-led world, one thing is becoming clear: people are travelling less for work. We can see it everywhere from everyday commuting to one-off business travel. Budgets are tighter, ‘air miles’ weigh heavily on sustainability calculations, and professionals are being choosier about the events they attend. Time suddenly seems more precious. So, for global brands, there’s a pressing need to make those interactions matter, and drive better value from every congress.
These twin issues are particularly acute in the global Pharma sector, where access to Healthcare Professionals (HCPs) is a basic requirement, yet those same HCPs can be stressed and time poor, and are increasingly turning to digital solutions to replace the ‘in person’ experience. Our solution is as nimble as it is innovative: lower footprint, lower carbon, higher impact event experiences that bridge the gap between the real and the virtual – and turn events into powerful and influential content generators.  

Looking ahead to ‘content programmes’

Our decade-long partnership with a global Pharma client speaks volumes about the new trends playing out in our sector. Across 30 shows a year, and a reusable stand ‘estate’ ranging from 40m2 to 200m2 – all of which bristle with the latest tech – we enable the in-person experience across three continents. 

Our client’s comms challenge is often complex, and the devil, as ever, is in the detail, as we embrace the need to communicate on a corporate, product and brand level. Working hard to align the many content stakeholders for each congress – from Product Managers and Brand Managers to business area leads and a multitude of medical comms agencies – we coordinate the content of LED screens, assemble programming playlists and bring timings together seamlessly. And all while ensuring brand compliance, consistency and technical alignment to make the maximum impact with delegates.  

To make this happen with complete continuity of brand and content, between events and across borders, we think far beyond the world of individual shows. Backed by our own ‘knowledge grid’, we devise and implement a rolling content programme that’s always looking a year ahead. And today our world of content goes far beyond the literature packs of old. 


Yesterday’s event stand. Today’s TV studio.
The bespoke, 500m2 event stand is fast becoming a piece of history, and with it the old-fashioned need to make a physical ‘statement’ at events. Instead, a new wave of compact and more versatile booths is taking shape, making far less environmental impact, opening the door to full reusability, and costing significantly less to ship, assemble and staff on-site. It’s a smaller and more intimate presence, and as we’ve found, it can deliver far greater bang for the buck – both at the event and afterwards.

To innovate and lead this new and more efficient approach, we’ve recognised that content doesn’t all need to be presented and discussed in a thousand person-to-person interactions on the stand. Although in-person engagement is back to stay, that same authentic engagement can also be captured and distributed to a far wider audience – edited, repackaged, reused and archived. 

Our novel solution is to see the exhibition stand of today as a mini TV studio, complete with its own digital edit suite. We capture key content with the brand’s subject matter experts, then edit on-site for immediate turnaround and distribution, all of which enhances the immediacy and ‘live’ feel of the event for the in-person audience, while extending its reach. The packaged content lives on a dedicated online hub – a go-to, on-demand  destination for in-person and virtual delegates – where it builds over time into a comprehensive archive of expert content, all beautifully packaged and branded.

Reduce. Reuse. Repeat.
From digital content to complex event stands, reusability is the new watchword. As the event booths of tomorrow are carefully disassembled and shipped to their next destination, they’re achieving both an extended shelf life... and a lower carbon footprint.

Our pioneering commitment to sustainability reporting is setting new benchmarks. Today we enable our clients to track the real-world carbon impact of leaner, nimbler event production across a plethora of indicators, from stand size and electrical consumption to staffing and air miles. For one client, this meant smashing their target of 60% carbon reduction set in 2019, to reach 84.74% four years later.

We now believe it’s possible – and, yes, desirable – for the signature 3-5 day event to become far leaner and greener, yet to live longer as the gateway to a library of valuable, trusted content. Showcasing knowledge. Driving traffic. Stimulating dialogue. 

At Rapiergroup, this is our world of harder-working events, where the online and in-person experiences are in perfect synch. Today we’re living up to our agency promise of accountability and sustainability, with environmental impact you can track - and a market-leading approach to tech innovation as the bedrock of authentic live event experiences.  

How could you turn your event presence into a driver of content? Get in touch with the team to discover more.


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