Post authored by Lynn Wirch, Director of Operations, Live Events
Imagine a scenario where you put some of the biggest players across your industry in the same room, working together to consider the evolution of their sport, creating new ideas and solving some their greatest challenges.
You call it a pipe dream. We call it IMMERSION.
For our second-annual IMMERSION event held in Bloomington, Minnesota, we were fortunate enough to have esports’ best-and-brightest thought leaders unite in a multi-sensory, shared learning environment.
Here, they were able to combine their vast experiences and brilliant minds to discuss how to utilize experience design and persona development to create more powerful events for their guests.
Unlike most events, IMMERSION doesn’t focus on how many people attend, but rather WHO attends.
It’s not about revenue, it’s about investment: investment in people, ideas and creating real-world, implementable solutions.
The “bottom-line” is about bringing the right mix of people together to help transform a rapidly growing industry.
Creating Unlikely Connections
Possibly the most powerful aspect of this event is hosting the “who’s who of esports” to experience a variety of learning environments designed to inspire thought and discussion related to their business and industry.
Getting representatives from UbiSoft, Riot Games, EA, ESL Gaming and more to workshop together at the same table is an amazing sight.
This intentionally small, invite-only event brings together a good mix of companies in esports with representatives who hold a variety of roles to provide a wealth of insights.
From producers, game developers, streaming pros and tournament organizers, each person brings his or her unique perspective, enthusiasm, energy and vision to the table.
The event also featured off-site events, hospitality, networking and wellness activities to help shape new ideas and solutions.
It’s beyond a learning lab or workshop; it’s a three-day, carefully curated environment that fosters collaboration you can’t find anywhere else.
From Observation to Implementation
The benefit of designing an exclusive and intimate event is that you can be creative with your destination.
The destination isn’t simply selected by what the city itself offers.
We research and explore what signature events are happening at the same time with relevant aspects to esports that we could attend and learn from.
Last year, in New Orleans, we were able to participate in events like Jazzfest, COLLISION and Game Fete, a trio of events that embody three important aspects of esports: festivals, technology and video games.
Last month, we had insider access with the X Games in Bloomington, where we were part of engaging discussions with every department head including the leaders responsible for this year’s EA esports activation.
While participating in these events was fun in itself, it gave each person a window into a different world, where they could observe how other events operate, gathering new ideas that they can now implement into their own events.
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Showcasing New Destinations
Cities like New Orleans may be more well-known destinations for events, but others like Bloomington are not as readily recognizable.
Having hosted several big-time events like the Super Bowl and Ryder Cup—and with a new focus on esports—Bloomington was the ideal host for Immersion 2.0.
Bringing this group to a city like Bloomington exposes them to a new location that they might never have heard of, let alone considered.
Now, this beautiful destination has caught the attention of decision-makers for hot new events in search of their next site.
All these facets come together to create a unique experience where people leave and think, “that’s the best thing I’ve ever attended, I hope I’m invited back.”
THAT’s the power of IMMERSION.
For nearly two decades, Lynn has managed a portfolio of accounts comprised of associations, corporate events and major city-wide live events.
Lynn’s passion for the live events industry has helped her clients design and create meaningful events set up for long-term success.