The digital exhibition is alive! …and inspires!
An insight into the project implementation of a digital exhibition with Medientage München.
Who would have thought some time ago that the concept of trade shows and conferences would have to be completely rethought?
And it is precisely at this point that Medientage München and Fabrik19 have jointly laid a forward-looking milestone.
In spring 2020, Medientage München GmbH, in the person of Managing Directors Stefan Sauter and Lina Timm, took up this challenge and decided to make MTM20 100 percent digital. To this end, a cooperation agreement was signed with global players such as Google and Arvato, as well as with Fabrik19, a software company based in central Hesse. The Google Cloud Platform ensured uncomplicated scaling of the systems. Building on this, Fabrik19 turned the ambitious and exciting idea into reality. Within three months of development, in close and exemplary cooperation, an all-round solution in the form of an interactive trade fair portal was created!
The exhibition portal and the idea behind it
The idea, in keeping with the MTM20 slogan “This is Media NOW,” was to build a portal that would be as recognizable as possible as the actual physical event, and at the same time play to the strengths of a digital event.
At the start of the project, there was a roughly elaborated idea of the product, which was handed over to the factory19 and specified step by step in joint coordination.
The technology behind it
he core of the portal is the Expo, developed on the basis of Angular and Node.js, with theme-based hall plans. The plans interactively lead to the more than 120 participating exhibitors. In addition, the paid conference area was created with its large and diverse range of programs formed by continuous broadcasts (livestreams) and topic-specific master classes, the XR Area, the Recruiting Sector and the Start into Media section with its live talks and webinars for career and career changers interested in media.
Throughout all of this, the focus during the event was on interaction and networking, as is customary at a trade show. Attendees, depending on the ticket they purchased, had the opportunity to connect with exhibitors, speakers and other visitors via an integrated 1:1 chat and video call. The networking tool was implemented using Big Blue Button and Jitsi.
In addition to the guided webinars and masterclasses, visitors sat down in spontaneous video sessions to discuss their specific topics in depth. The group chats in the continuous livestreams or the matchmaking function in the networking area made it easier to find the right people to talk to and thus establish personal contacts.
Planning and implementation with SCRUM
Since it was clear from the outset that not all requirements for such a complex product could be precisely defined from the start, an agile development approach with SCRUM was chosen.
The development period until the live launch of the portal was only 3 months, which can be considered ambitious. This challenge required a good organization and an open, focused and as transparent as possible communication with all involved stakeholders.
The Fabrik19 team consisted of a product owner (requirements manager), a scrum master (servant leader) and six to eight cross-functional developers. In order to always work in a user-centric way, the team visualized a big picture of the project scope in the first phase using story mapping. Together with the customer, user stories with acceptance criteria were written and transferred to the product backlog (list of all possible requirements) according to priority. Based on this, an MVP (Minimal Viable Product) crystallized, as is also known from Lean Management. This made the core functionalities clearly visible and made it much easier to set priorities for the rest of the process.
The actual development work was done in successive two-week sprints. In the sprint events such as sprint planning, the daily stand-ups or the sprint review, external and internal communication was optimal for a clean coordination between the development team and all stakeholders over the duration of the project. This created a structured space for collecting feedback on the interim product increment, initiating improvements and adding further (even short-term) product requirements.
With the help of such a team organization and process structure, it was even possible to respond to customer requests during the trade fair event and to optimize the portal in live operation.
In the end, Medientage München and Fabrik19 were a clear success at the exhibition, and the users were very enthusiastic.
Above all, visitor feedback during and after the seven-day trade fair program was largely very positive and satisfactory.
Digitizing, organizing and executing a exhibition in a meaningful way is a challenge. We were happy to take on this challenge.
Of course, there are ups and downs that you have to overcome in the various project phases. But this circumstance often makes it easier to break new ground and develop fresh and user-friendly solutions.
Of course, 2020 has accelerated development. But regardless of the future situation, the demand for attractive digital solutions and for alternatives to face-to-face events will increase and may soon be taken for granted.
What are the Medientage München and what is their goal?
The MTM media trade show is an annual congress and accompanying trade show that attracts up to 8,000 visitors to the Bavarian capital every year, with a wide range of offerings covering all aspects of current trends in the media industry. Medientage München is considered one of the leading media trade events in Europe.
Numerous big names from the publishing, TV and online worlds exchange views on the current media situation and help media professionals and entrepreneurs find their bearings and make decisions on social and media-oriented issues.
Once again, well-known speakers from politics (Markus Söder), film and television (Tom Buhrow, Nazan Eckes, Joko Winterscheid), print and mobile, media policy, advertising and digital business were inspired by the new concept and welcomed to the production studios or via a live broadcast. Influencers from the online media world were given special attention and made an important contribution to the discourse on media change in Germany.
This year, the event once again lived up to its own goal of bringing together private radio and TV broadcasters, newspaper and magazine publishers, and online media with public broadcasters for a joint discussion.
Would you like to organize your event as a digital version as well? Contact us.