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Shop Direct’s The Voice – Employee-Led Entertainment Contest

The Challenge

This was the 4th year that we had to deliver the Shop Direct Christmas Conference. With our 2012 event winning the UK Event Award for Conference of the Year and the 2013 conference being up for nomination, we knew it was essential to do something bigger and better than previous years, to really wow our clients and attendees.

With 900 employees set to attend, the conference aimed to creatively communicate the key messages of the company in advance of Christmas – the busiest trading period in the Shop Direct calendar!

The key objective for the event was to drive colleague engagement and get everyone fired up and knowing their part in the plan. Therefore, it was essential for the client to engage their audience in a fresh, new and exciting way, in the run-up to, during and also following the event.

Creating the extraordinary

A registration website was built pre-event which generated anticipation and excitement for the conference and got employees involved and engaged before the event.

Alongside this, weekly emails were sent to all registered attendees to share information about the event, discuss the custom-built event app and to encourage people to enter the Shop Direct ‘The Voice’ competition.

‘The Voice’ competition gave Shop Direct employees the opportunity to nominate their colleagues to enter the contest, where in the weeks leading up to the event a series of auditions were held where nominees sang to a panel of judges.

The competition built a genuine buzz of excitement amongst employees, with personalized posters being made to show support for entrants and push people to vote for their favourite contestants using the Shop Direct event-app.

The conference featured state of the art projection mapped set and stage, a fashion show, plenary sessions, a guest speaker, breakouts, an exhibition and a Gala Dinner.

‘The Voice’ finals were held at the event, where the 6 finalists sang with a live band in front of all delegates, attendees and senior staff and managers. The audience cast their vote using the event app and within 7 minutes 333 votes were cast, before the winner was chosen.

The Shop Direct Christmas Conference 2014 was universally acknowledged as the best event that staff had ever attended with staff commenting:

“Genuinely thought this was a superb conference, best I’ve been to and I was inspired.”

“It was a game changing conference nothing short of outstanding.”

“The best compliment, having been a veteran of a number of these, is that it gets better and better to the point where I can’t see how we can improve each year, I am wowed!”

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