Achieving exceptional production quality for virtual events

by | Jun 25, 2021

Delivering low-quality virtual events via group video platforms negatively impacts the user experience.

While lower quality productions were accepted during lockdowns, audiences now expect first class productions and organisers and brands need high production standards to reflect their brand effectively.

This is why TicketCo Media Services formed an innovation partnership with PSL Technology. It provides a professional framework for artists and businesses to produce concerts, presentations, talks and conferences via virtual studio sets. It makes high-end production of virtual events straight forward for organisers.

Its technology even enables people in different locations to appear seamlessly on-screen together. So much so that it meant the British Explorer’s Society could deliver its virtual annual conference to appear it was directly from Everest.

Setting the standard

PSL Technology uses On The Set and In The Room technology to create television standard productions for live streamed events. On The Set technology is only limited to your imagination and creativity. It is how your set will appear to your viewers combined with the any independent feeds.

In The Room enables PSL to add key presenters and contributors into the set from wherever they are located, making it appear as though multiple people in different locations are in the same room.

“There are extraordinary advantages to this technology across different event formats,” said Martin Dyckhoff, Marketing Director at PSL Technology Group. “Poor quality virtual productions have been accepted in the wake of the pandemic, but companies now need quality online events to match the values of their brands.”

Understanding virtual

The British Explorer’s Society maximised In The Room technology at its recent annual conference to provide viewers with the ultimate streaming experience – one which was also fun.

Traditionally, the conference is hosted at the Royal Geographical Society in London. Never had it been portrayed at Mount Everest’s base camp – until now.

Martin explained: “The British Explorer’s Society were open to approaching virtual events with the correct mindset. To make the most of it, you need to understand that virtual gives you potential you do not have with physical.

“Originally, The BES expected to use images of the Royal Geographical Society so the conference could be delivered at its traditional venue. Which we demonstrated for them. But then, in our discussions with the BES and our immediate Client, P2P (Planned to Perfection), we learnt of their sadly cancelled Everest expedition. This thought led to our technology delivering a conference which was so much more than they had hoped for.”

Special effects

PSL were able to make it appear as though the conference’s two presenters were both together and speaking from their tent at ‘Everest base camp.’

To add further value to the live stream, an individual video feed of a campsite fire with live flames was included in the output. The evening sky darkened as the day turned to night, and a celebratory fireworks display lit the virtual sky over Everest to conclude the conference.

“Having an idea for your set is just the starting point,” said Martin. “PSL consider every element that is under our control.

“We can add transitions, we can animate footage and merge multiple feeds into one. Images or areas of interest can be used as placeholders for video clips too. It is about what works for you and how we can deliver the messaging of your event with impact.”

In fact, four panels of contributors including the newly elected Fellows of the BES, their patron, videos of key events, not to mention a live outdoor demonstration of making fire without matches, made up over a hundred elements brought on set for the enjoyment of all.

Contributor capture

The conference hosts presented the evening remotely from their homes in the Cotswolds and on the south coast, respectively.

It was the merging of multiple live stream feeds into one which meant that both presenters could appear to be speaking from the same tent. Businesses that work with PSL can choose to broadcast events remotely or from their Newbury based studio – or to combine remote contributions with in-venue productions in line with the Company heritage. it’s completely flexible.

“You can come to our studios, but you don’t have to,” said Martin. “Our work can be captured, delivered and have impact remotely. We have really focused on remote contributor capture and doing it well.”

On the set

Thanks to PSL’s technology the the boundaries of ‘the set’ are limitless.

Martin said: “When we mention virtual conferencing, people tend to think of broadcast studios as sets –like those we’d see on Match of the Day or News at 10. The reality is because we are fully virtual, the only boundary is imagination.

“This means our technology can be applied across a range of broadcasting formats from live concerts to panel shows, awards ceremonies and sports programmes. Your next panel show could even come live from Caesar’s box at the Colosseum. Call it ‘Thumbs up – or down!’”

Customer satisfaction

After using PSL to deliver its first ever virtual conference, what did the British Explorer’s Society have to say about their broadcasting experience?

“The whole event was creative and entertaining,” said a spokesperson from the British Explorer’s Society. “Seeing the hosts in the same tent while in fact far apart was ingenious and effective and well executed. It was one of the memorable takeaways from the event.”

Monetisation

PSL Technology Group also has a black box studio in Newbury – boasting an O2 Arena sized stage equipped with full height lighting, sound and video technology if required from the PSL Hire department on site.

Chromakey (green screen) technology allows performers or presenters to appear in any location they wish and to appear at hybrid events which are physical as well as virtual.

Crucially, events can be monetised through PSL’s partnership with TicketCo Media Services. The innovation partnership helps organisations create quality content and deliver it online via TicketCo Media Services’ integrated ticketing, live streaming and on-demand platform.

Martin added: “We have partnered with TicketCo Media Services to provide a full solution to clients so that once content has been created, we have the means to broadcast it via one platform that combines bookings, transactions and streaming.

“We’re pleased to partner with such an innovative business which, like ourselves, is dedicated to professional event delivery.”

To learn more about PSL Technology visit here.

Written by Shaun Reynolds

Communications advisor and expert storyteller with Fortitude Communications. A former news reporter and sports editor of five years across several UK regional titles. Experienced in photography and social media management with a passion for the outdoors.

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