Already at the beginning of this year we were afraid that it might be difficult to organize a Guitar Summit in the Rosengarten in Mannheim in the usual presence form because of COVID19. We observed the developments around the corona virus pandemic the whole time, always hoping that the situation would calm down again by autumn and the Guitar Summit would take place as planned.
However, when it became clear that the corona virus would continue to occupy us beyond fall and that the Guitar Summit 2020 with an attractive international program under the necessary hygiene measures was absolutely impossible, we had to completely rethink our approach and come up with a major digital event. It was clear that we definitely wanted to create an event for the entire guitar community and that it would probably have to take place on the internet. And yes, like most of us guitar fans, we were skeptical at first whether and how such a big live event like the Guitar Summit could be credibly realized digitally. So, we took an empty piece of paper and wrote down what really makes the Guitar Summit what it is.
The Guitar Summit is not a classical guitar fair, but a holistic event around the topic of guitar & bass with a special focus on entertainment, edutainment, infotainment, the exchange in the community, as well as the interaction with manufacturers and musicians. Digitally realizable, but a real challenge. The haptic experience – trying out guitars, cranking up amps, fiddling with pedals, etc. – these are experiences that a digital event can’t offer, of course.
The whole thing should have an appealing design, be as user-friendly as possible and of course work on smartphones and tablets. This is one of the reasons why we deliberately decided against a resource-consuming “3D shooter look”, but rather aimed for the participation to be technically easy for the guitar community.
In exchange with many musician colleagues and exhibitors, we then designed the Guitar Summit Web Camp, and in the next step, web professionals critically reviewed our high and passionate ambitions and implemented them technically in a really well-functioning overall concept.
The Guitar Summit Web Camp consists of three complementary main components: The Guitar Summit Live Stream that accompanies you for several hours, the workshop program and the brand pages - each with extensive interactive elements!
The Guitar Summit Web Camp is accompanied by a live stream, which is produced in the Guitar Summit Studio and offers a jam-packed program around guitars, basses, pedals and amps. Among other things, this streaming marathon includes interviews and gear talk with guests in the studio or via video conference, editorial contributions, live performances, workshops and discussions and much more. Many well-known youtubers will also actively participate in the live stream and help shape the program.
During the live stream, a live chat function turns passive viewers into active event participants who can interactively participate in the show.
On the brand pages, the exhibitor can set up their virtual stand and present themselves and their products. A welcome video can also be integrated in addition to the brand profiles. Novelties, product highlights and classics can be presented in words, pictures, video and audio. Furthermore, the exhibitor has the possibility to provide product brochures for download and to integrate an online store.
Via the social media wall, all contributions of a brand from platforms such as Facebook or Instagram are combined in a single feed and displayed on the brand page.
Various communication tools are available for direct exchange between visitors and exhibitors. The visitor can contact the exhibitor either by appointment or within predefined opening hours via 1on1 text chat or 1on1 video session. In addition, raffles can be organized on the brand pages.
Heart of the brand page is the workshop area. Here you can watch pre-produced workshop videos, live streams or podcasts on all kinds of topics. These can also be found in the program overview.
As with the analog Guitar Summit, the extensive workshop program is the main focus of the Guitar Summit Web Camp, with the difference that the workshops are not held on stages, but on theme channels – from electric guitar to amps, bass, pedals, acoustic guitar to recording.
Workshops can be pre-produced videos, podcasts or live streams – from lectures, tips & tricks, panel discussions, workshop tours, Q&A session, behind-the-scene content to concerts.
A specially created forum accompanies the workshop program. A thread is set up in advance of each workshop, where exhibitors, lecturers, artists and visitors can discuss the respective topic. This forum can also be used for networking and further communication independent of the topic – here visitors can exchange information with each other, with exhibitors or musicians and lecturers and share information.
The program overview
The individual workshops are presented on different topic channels. There they are listed as program blocks on a timeline, activated according to a fixed schedule. After activation the content is available at any time. The workshops take place on the respective brand pages and are only linked in the program overview.