Thursday, 18 June 2009
With UltimateHD Fest at InfoComm, Polycom Shows How Telepresence Can Extend Reach and Impact on Events
The traditional model for hosting large meetings and events has faced challenges in recent years as companies of all sizes trim travel budgets and look for more efficient ways to bring people together. At the InfoComm 2009 conference and expo June 17-19 in Orlando, Fla., Polycom, Inc., the global leader in Telepresence, Video and Voice communication solutions, is demonstrating how businesses can leverage Telepresence to cost-effectively host sales conferences, industry events and other meetings more effectively and efficiently across distances.
The recession is causing businesses and industry associations to downsize meetings. According to a recent National Business Travel Association reported from April 2009, 84 percent of travel buyers say they have cut travel budgets since October 2008, and more than 70 percent expect to reduce spending further through 2009.(1) Polycom cut its own airline ticket purchases by 30 percent in the last 12 months.
"Like many companies, Polycom makes significant investments in time, effort and resources in exhibiting at industry events," said Joan Vandermate, vice president of marketing for Video solutions at Polycom. "Using Telepresence, we can reach a wider audience of customers and partners not attending the show. It's an exciting new model to improve the ROI, scope and impact of major events that also addresses the new realities of the current business and economic environment."
UltimateHD(TM) Fest Delivers Concert Live from Austin, Texas:
As part of its InfoComm presence, Polycom on June 17 will host UltimateHD Fest, which includes simultaneous regional events in Orlando, Fla., Austin, Texas, New York, Sao Paolo, Brazil, and Santa Clara, Calif. Using Polycom Telepresence, customers and partners in each location will interact with Polycom executives on the show floor in Orlando. All locations will also enjoy entertainment live from the Belmont Club in Austin, the Live Musical Capital of the World®. There will be interactive performances from renowned illusionist Cody Fisher, followed by a live concert by SKYROCKET!, a critically acclaimed Austin-based rock band.
To help facilitate the event, Polycom is working with PSAV Presentation Services, the leading supplier of audiovisual and event technology support to hotels, associations, producers and meeting planners worldwide. PSAV recently invested in Polycom Telepresence solutions to extend its existing event support services and bring new cost efficiencies to small and large meetings, and even general session-style events involving hundreds of participants in each location.
PSAV sees HD Telepresence as a way to remain the market leader in an environment that seems to present one challenge after another. "We are excited about the customer reception to our Telepresence services," said Brian Lagestee, senior vice president of technology and business development at PSAV. "We see it as a differentiator not only for us, but for our hotel partners as well. It's something they can offer that another hotel can't." See addition press release today titled: "In Era of Tight Budgets, PSAV Enables Businesses to Extend and Regionalize Events for Less with Polycom Telepresence."
With Telepresence, meeting planners can reduce the financial and productivity impact of traditional meetings — without sacrificing the crucial elements of interactivity, collaboration and face-to-face communication. For instance, instead of bringing 300 people to one central location, event hosts can bring 100 people to three regional locations and connect them all through Telepresence.
"Telepresence creates some exciting new opportunities for event planners, especially when delivered in conjunction with related services through an event-focused service provider like PSAV," said Cindy Y. Lo, event planner and owner of Red Velvet Events, Inc. "I can see many clients wanting this type of capability to link multiple locations as well as bring in high-value remote speakers more cost effectively. With Telepresence, engaging speakers will be less costly, because it requires less of their time and clients won't have to pay for their travel and expenses."
"Polycom's UltimateHD Fest offers a great way for bands like ours to reach new listeners in other markets. During this concert in Austin, we will also be performing for people in four other cities, including New York and Sao Paolo, Brazil, with no additional effort on our part," said Trish Murphy, member of SKYROCKET! "Performing via Telepresence means distance is really no longer a barrier. I could see clubs collaborating and using Telepresence to test out new artists from across the country or the world as opening acts for other bands. It's an exciting opportunity for the music industry and for performing artists."
Telepresence can also serve as an effective contingency plan when event speakers or large groups of participants are unable to travel for any number of reasons. Polycom Telepresence solutions allow people to meet and work together naturally across distances with an UltimateHD experience including HD video, HD stereo audio and sharing of multimedia HD content.
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