Last updated on January 21st, 2022 at 6:50pm
In May, we held our first Cloudunity event. Our goal with Cloudunity was to bring together customers, partners, and cloud governance practitioners to help simplify the cloud. Like so many other gatherings this year, we'd originally planned for this to be an in-person event. We pivoted to a virtual event and saw a very high attendee to registrant ratio.
Fast forward through six more months of virtual events. We knew it would be challenging to get a spot on invitees' calendars for yet one more Zoom event. Here are a few ways we approached event preparation and execution for Cloudunity Fall 2020. And check out our replay, where we capture some of the great moments into a 25-minute highlight reel!
Crafting a realistic agenda
I have to admit, my first stab at the agenda was overly ambitious. I had visions of almost a full day of content. In talking with our internal presenters, it quickly became clear this wasn't feasible from both a content and engagement perspective. With our first event being just six months ago - and those six months filled with nothing but Zoom calls - requesting that much of a time commitment wasn't going to work and we'd be challenged to fill that time with meaningful content.
Taking a second pass through the agenda, we identified the must-have pieces that would provide most value. While we wanted to provide a recap of our engineering efforts and preview features coming soon, this was secondary to hearing from others. This meant lining up customers and customer success stories and identifying an industry thought leader to kick us off in a keynote. We were fortunate to have our customers at Indeed, ARL Penn State, and Absolute Software agree to a customer panel, and Forrest Brazeal signed on to talk cloud in these unique times.
Post-event feedback indicates we made the right choice, with majority of attendees saying event length was good.
Keeping attention and offering options
To keep attention, we focused on limiting cloudtamer.io-led sessions to just 20 minutes. This was enough time to hit the key points and combat Zoom fatigue.
In-person events benefit from the 'hallway track', those serendipitous moments that occur between sessions where new friends are made and more learning occurs. We tried to provide a facsimile of these through the Cloudunity Slack community we launched at the event. We mentioned the community early in our event, regularly put the invite URL in the Zoom chat, and had our team members monitor Slack during the event to welcome new members and answer questions. We kept breaks short to discourage disconnecting from the event. When we did break, we suggested using the Slack #introduce-yourself channel as a way to replicate hallway encounters.
Crafting a run-of-show plan prior to the event also provided options to attendees and other ways to engage. We pulled together a list of reference material that would align to points in the sessions. So attendees could check out the Cloud Governance Principles course or learn more about the Cloud Resume Challenge. (Feedback from an attendee: "Starting off the event with such an inspiring story as the resume challenge made me want to further invest in my skills.")
Cloudunity in 25 minutes
Here are some of the highlights from our recent event. Check out our summary for:
- A war story about why cloud wins (and how Beth saved $120K/year on her cloud bill) from Cloud Irregular, Forrest Brazeal
- A deep dive into a few recent cloudtamer.io enhancements, including new Azure additions
- A customer who identified big savings opportunities on their cloud bill
- What we have in store in coming months - including Google Cloud support
- A panel discussion with our great customers who talk cloud success, multi-cloud, cattle or pets, and lessons learned
All Cloudunity content is available for customers and partners at our Support Center.