Online? No problem. MVP? No problem. Last week, we proved with the debut of the Handelskraft Conference 2020 Online Edition that we are able to pull this off under enormous time pressure and extreme conditions. Up to the day of the conference, we experienced 16 exciting days between »Oh my God«, corona master plan and »dotSource goes home office«. Within a very short time, everything that had been prepared intensively for more than a year was rethought, rebuilt and turned into a day that we will not forget so quickly for various reasons.
Online MVP: The Evolution of #HK20STR
02/03/2020, 7 a.m.: 210 confirmed participants for #HK20STR. Not too bad. 12 p.m.: The first big names in e-commerce business cancel their events. 4 p.m.: 158 confirmed participants for #HK20STR. 5 p.m.: four speaker cancellations 6 p.m.: Calling it a day. Feels like hell on earth.
03/03/2020, 9 a.m.: Turn the conference into an online edition. 10 a.m.: Panic. We are in a state of shock. Whatever, bite the bullet and get it done. How is this supposed to work? Which tool do we use to bring more than 200 participants together? How do we transfer the things that distinguish the Handelskraft Conference from analogue to digital?
No dress code? No bullshit? More value? Level up? – Easy.
Take part? – Doable.
Connect? – Difficult. But we’ll work it out.
Adapt the communication concept to the COVID-19 situation. Create a new design. Update the conference website. Publish the press release. Prepare the blog article. Plan mailings. Test tools. Sync. Work. Sync. Adjust. Sync.
Speaker sessions thus turned into webinars with chat function, integrated surveys and the possibility of raising one’s hand virtually. We set up virtual meet-the-speaker rooms for networking, which were actively used on the day of the conference – just like the breaks to have an exchange via webcam.
Online MVP or: #ichmagsdigital – Now More Than Ever
Yeah, those two weeks and two days were crazy. Not everyone was still at the office. However, it didn’t matter: even in the unscheduled creative sessions on the balcony or during the digital meetings from home, we fiddled around, coordinated and rethought ideas together as a team, but above all organised an awesome conference that even attracted a TV broadcaster and, just like every other Handelskraft Conference, left this pleasant feeling and a big grin on our faces. That’s important. Particularly in times like these. Good Lord, how inflationary have I been using these lines the last few days.
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We pat ourselves on the back and would like to thank all participants, speakers and our sponsors commercetools, Magnolia and StiboSystems. We would also like to thank Anne Lehmann who has been loyal to us once again this year, the entire dotSource team that made this MVP possible, our friends and families; basically everyone who challenged us, supported us, believed in us and gave us props via various channels.
And of course there is also our yearly recap video even though it is a bit different due to the COVID-19 situation. But see and hear for yourself:
Online Is the New Offline
»Neue Wege« (New Paths) – one of our social media posts regarding the Handelskraft Online Edition was shared with these words. That’s true. However, the tools and the possibilities to take these new paths are not all that new. Some of them just have not been used for years and now it was about time to get them out again. The one or other will experience a similar situation at the moment. Use the digital repertoire that exists – it is enormous! Make the most of it. »It has always worked this way« is no longer valid.
You do not know where to start? Holding meetings completely remote? Transferring analogue methods into digital formats? Do not hesitate to contact us and we will show you how (well-)functioning analogue processes turn into (even better) digital processes aka #HK20STR not in STR.
You missed the debut of the Handelskraft Online Edition? Your family office was too chaotic and you were not able to (completely) participate in one of the sessions? No problem. We will make all speeches available to you in the next few days. The keynote speeches by Laura Winterling and Frank Eilers can already be found here.