One-on-One with Gabriela
Today we have a new addition to our One-on-One series. Once a month we interview event professionals both in Brazil and abroad to get to know more about what makes them tick.
This week we sat down with Gabriela Nascimento, currently in the Marketing Management department at SEBRAE-RS. She’s worked in the event space since 2012 most notably in two major events: the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, and Insight in 2018.
She stood out to us thanks to her experience at the World Cup where she worked with a multinacional steel company that brought 1500 clients from all over the world to watch matches here in Brazil. From inviting participants all the way up to kick-off at the games, she organized it all. Amazing, isn’t it?
With plenty of experience in corporate events specializing in innovation, entrepreneurship, and client-relations, Gabriela recently faced the challenge of organizing Insight 2018. Despite various hurdles, she proudly gave participants two incredible days of innovation and entrepreneurial culture, bringing nationally renowned speakers, technological ingenuity, and plenty of networking all in an innovative environment on a 360º stage of simultaneous content.
Now that we know a little more about Gabriela’s background, let’s hear what she has to say about her experiences.
What was the hardest challenge at the beginning of your career?
My background is in marketing strategy and I studied event design, but I don’t have a production mindset. Even today, my biggest challenge is thinking about the tiniest of infrastructure details like checklists and practical event items. Though that isn’t my strength, I still need to understand how it works to hire the right people that can help. I think it’s paramount for this kind of production work to be in the hands of a good event production supplier. Our job in marketing includes briefing, knowing what we want from an event, how we want to attract and astound participants on the day-of, what kind of experience we can provide, and what story we want people telling when they leave.
What motivates you when organizing an event?
I love working on a project; I love the timeline: “beginning, middle, end.” Events have specific dates, so it’s a dream for someone who loves working in project management. We keep up with the results of our marketing campaigns, feel the nerves of the ticket office, enjoy the day of the event, and see the expressions on people’s faces who are enjoying (or not) the experience that you’ve spent so much time thinking about. The months of design and planning excite me. I love using tools like empathy maps, user journeys, and event design canvases to tackle these challenges.
Qual o principal aliado para os organizadores de eventos? E o inimigo?
I would say that there are a few allies event organizers can use like good planning tools (Checklist tables, proposals, timelines, and task management), working on an event design team (empathy maps, user journey design, and event design campus). And, in my opinion, the biggest enemy of a good event is short-sightedness — thinking only about the event we’d like to attend instead of thinking about that event’s specific audience.
How much time do you generally spend planning a big event? And what’s a must when it comes to planning?
In an ideal world, we can plan a big event one year in advance. In the real world, we usually have less than 3 months to conceive, plan, and market an event. Usually in this tight-scheduled scenario, the must-have for the planning process is a good supplier who is committed to anticipating problems and thinking about the smallest details of production.
How do you work with suppliers? What are your criteria for selecting them?
Since I currently work at Sebrae, when we contract a supplier we need at least 3 proposals from the market. With bigger projects, we go through a contract licensing process. Like with all businesses, the criteria are cost, market experience and reputation, being aligned with all the legal requirements and not being involved in corruption or illicit activities. In cases where we are contracting very specific profiles for a project, like the Insight Innovation event, we also try to match the suppliers profile to the purpose of our event.
What kinds of technologies do you use to help execute your event?
At our Insight event, we used Eventelis’ platform for digital tickets and an event app. The platform was very useful for users on the day of the event since we had different content tracks and the app lets each user create their own personalized agenda. The event agenda was also integrated into and available on our microsite making it easy to edit content in just one place. It also helped us to generate analytics relating to signups and tickets sold directly in the platform.
How did using an event app impact your event?
The main benefits were having a customized agenda for participants, sending notifications throughout the event, feedback for each session and satisfaction research after the event.
What were the benefits of using a tool that allowed for syncing between the site and the application?
The quickness of editing with just one tool, without a doubt. For someone who is already preoccupied with thousands of details simultaneously, this is a huge time saver. Plus, we avoid risking having different content on all our different channels (our website, our app, etc.).
What’s the secret to pleasing so many people in a unique environment?
We can never please everyone, but I think that the secret in satisfying the most people is planning events with our specific audience profile always in mind. Beyond that, we need to understand the context of the event (time, day of the week, location, duration), to organize the most comfortable and exciting experience possible, that guarantees each participant absorbs information without unnecessary interferences. Putting yourself in the shoes of others is the key to success in my opinion.
Did you like meeting Gabriela? You can find out more about her on her LinkedIn
If you’d like to learn more about how the Eventelis platform can augment your event, please feel free to reach out to us. We’d be happy to talk with you.
We’ll have more interviews for you soon!
Until next time.