CUNA Mutual Group
Online Discovery Conference
Turning a successful physical conference into a virtual show
Founded in 1935, CUNA Mutual Group has been instrumental in providing products and services for credit unions, including: protection for credit unions’ and members, lending solutions and marketing programs for bottom-line impact, and employee benefits.
For many years, CUNA Mutual Group hosted a large, physical event, the “Discovery Conference” to share timely and relevant industry information. These events became a must-attend conference for credit unions and related businesses. As the economy became more constrained, however, business travel for credit union employees became more restricted. Many credit unions, particularly smaller ones, couldn’t spare the expense or the resources to attend physical conferences. It was time for a change.
To offset this shifting dynamic, in 2009, CUNA Mutual Group started delivering webinars, using a basic conferencing tool, to take the place of the conference. The webinars were well attended but the technology lacked a number of critical features, including a stable platform for video streaming and an automated registration process.
The Online Discovery Conference
In 2010, CUNA Mutual Group teamed up with ON24 to build its first Online Discovery Conference, completely replicating the original physical event. The conference was a big success, exceeding the attendance of the previous physical shows.
The “2011 Online Discovery Conference” was even bigger and more successful. Using the ON24 virtual show platform, CUNA Mutual Group was able to create a fully branded user conference that included an auditorium, where numerous presentations were delivered using the ON24 webcasting Platform 10, an expo center featuring booths that showcased individual products and services, a networking lounge where attendees could join scheduled chats, post on message boards and exchange information with other attendees, and resource center where presentations and content could be searched and downloaded.
Higher attendance, higher level of engagement than physical events
The 2011 Online Discovery Conference exceeded the registration numbers of previous conferences (which averaged 600-800 registrants) with a total registration of 1,907 people, and achieved a registrant-to-attendee conversion rate of 62%. With an average attendance time of four hours in the environment, attendees stayed engaged with the content and were able to interact directly with presenters, sponsors and other attendees. CUNA Mutual Group is already planning the 2012 Online Discovery Conference.
Registrants: 1,907 Attendees: 1,200 (62% attendance rate)
- 240.1 minutes – average viewer show duration (that’s 4 hours!)
- 4,453 sessions were viewed
- 5.35 – average number of booths entered (out of 12)
- 873 – maximum simultaneous show attendees
- 1,152 1-to-1 chats occurred
- 1,537 location and booth chats occurred
- 341 scheduled chats entered
- 10,640 documents were viewed
- 1,132 virtual business cards were exchanged
- 90 posts were made to the discussion forums