Queen’s Smith School of Business

High Impact Virtual Networking Event Attracts Alumni From Across the Globe

The Context

The Queen’s Smith School of Business needed to pivot a beloved annual alumni event from in-person to virtual.  The challenge: How to match the energy and excitement of the popular Steam Whistle Brewery networking party in an online format.

Our Virtual Event Solution

Proof Experiences designed an evening event that included a one-hour “main stage” shared experience for everyone, followed by individual networking opportunities.

Alumni from around the world were invited to the party with guests from Iran to Calgary to California. “It’s 5 AM here in Bangladesh but I’m having a blast!” exclaimed one participant.

The event was widely promoted on social media. To build excitement, invitees were mailed a Smith-branded cocktail cup along with a recipe for the event’s signature summer drink and instructions to bring your cup and cocktail to the party!

The event was co-hosted by Neil Pasricha, a Queen’s alumni who write The Book of Awesome and, Smith Associate Dean & Associate Professor, Elspeth Murray.  Following a video introduction, Neil and Elspeth led participants through an upbeat night of live interviews, music and entertainment.

A professional mixologist demonstrated how to whip up the signature drink and guests were treated to a lively Q&A.  Musician Joel Plaskett sang a song from his latest album and, Olympic gold-medalist and Smith’s newest student, Erica Wiebe was the surprise guest.

Following the main event, guests used their Profile page and the “Find a Fellow Attendee” networking features to connect with former classmates and meet up in dedicated chat rooms.

The Results

Attendance at the virtual event doubled with guests from around the globe and the exit survey generated the highest 75% “Totally Satisfied” rating for the new experience.  One guest summed it up best: “You’ve managed to convince me I am at a party. Well done!”

Service Provided

  • Turnkey event & technology management​
  • Communication plan consultation
  • Content direction & consultation​
  • Speaker & talent management
  • Run of show & workback management
  • Audience engagement tactics
  • Video production & post-production
  • Rehearsals & live event stream production
  • AV services
  • Post event reporting