5 Ways a Graphic Recorder Optimizes Brainstorming Sessions

5 Ways a Graphic Recorder Optimizes Brainstorming Sessions

Brainstorming can make all the difference in key projects, strategy direction, and company culture. To optimize your brainstorming session, you can hire a real-time, virtual live sketching illustrator to capture your ideas and turn them into a powerful visual tool. 

5 Benefits of Graphic Recording for Brainstorming Sessions

Visual from graphic recording about increasing audience engagement

Encouraging All Voices

Have you ever had a meeting where one or maybe two main voices drive the entire thing? It can be hard to get a word in edgewise with some people.

Using visual notes will help a lot with this problem. Not only will a graphic recorder help move on from solitary points (no one wants anyone to keep beating a dead horse), but they can help draw out some of the voices in the back that are at risk of being missed. 

We can also help you set your meeting strategy ahead of time to encourage more varied participation if you are concerned this will be an issue.

Increasing Participation

The exact opposite problem can happen too—how many meetings are largely crickets? Whether people are bored, distracted, or just feel stuck, it can be easy to have a brainstorming session turn out to be a dud-session.

Live sketching the session will really boost participation. People get excited when they see their ideas being sketched out in real-time and it’s hard not to want to join in on the fun.

Showing Progress

Sometimes employees (or even managers) just don’t want to be there—often because they feel like it is a waste of time. With real-time graphic recording, you will all be able to see exactly what is getting accomplished in a map-like illustration that highlights key takeaways. This makes it much easier to see the progress being made and can perk up those who might think they have better things to do…

Sparking New Thoughts

Brainstorming is easier with visual notetaking. Often, one idea will stem into a series of related—but different—ideas. Rather than go old school with a whiteboard and sloppy writing, you can make your brainstorm board professional, captivating and engaging with a live digital sketch artist.

Getting those ideas onto the screen and catching all of the thoughts as they are thrown out there will really help spark those deeper ideas that are waiting to surface.

Clearly Recording Ideas

Sometimes meetings can feel like a blur and you only have some scribbled down notes to help you remember some of the smaller ideas that might be great if they are fleshed out more. Relying on an employee to take notes is almost always going to lead to missed ideas or certain sections you can’t quite translate because it isn’t how you would have recorded it.

Live illustrations from the hand of a trained professional graphic notetaker will help capture those ideas into memorable notes. This powerful visual reminder will help you take advantage of the ideas brought up and keep inspiring your team to think along similar lines.

Graphic about live stream of graphic facilitation

Leaders in Graphic Recording & Live Sketching

Are you ready to have the best brainstorming session yet? Hire a live sketch artist for your next event! 

Connect with us to talk about all the details and how we can maximize your meetings with a live graphic recorder.

5 Reasons to use Graphic Recording for Company Events

5 Reasons to use Graphic Recording for Company Events

Looking for an unusual twist to improve your next company event?  In a recent report by Bizzabo:

  • 97% of event marketers believe hybrid events will be popular in 2021
  • 80% named attendee engagement and satisfaction as top KPIs
  • More than half (52.9%) found it harder to create memorable virtual experiences

Visual notetaking makes events more fun, improves experiences, and maximizes outcomes.

Graphic about the science behind visual communication.

5 Reasons to Use Graphic Recording for Corporate Events & Meetings

Capture the Mood

Event pictures alone don’t fully capture the mood of your event. Video is often too long and hard to condense. If you are recording a speaker, you will have a lot of dead space which isn’t very captivating for a virtual audience.

With live sketch illustrations, a professional graphic notetaker will capture the heart of the presentation as it is being presented. You can use a graphic recorder to illustrate the vibes of your event, which is a lot of fun for your attendees to witness in real-time.

It is also a great reminder later, drawing people back to the experience your company event offered. The finished boards can make great vision boards for your breakrooms or lobby—depending on the nature of your event and the content highlighted.

Live sketching taking place in front of an audience

Increase Event Engagement

Live sketching is captivating. People love watching the artist interpret their words and incorporate them into the event illustration map. The illustration becomes a powerful visual tool that helps increase learning and memory retention and your speakers can ask for audience participation to help boost engagement. 

During the event, you can also use finished illustrations as photo props or interactive stations to continue the power of the engagement.

Stay Connected After

One of the reasons to plan a company event in the first place is to bolster connections and support. After the event, you can form deeper connections because you will have a purpose to reach out—sending out the graphics from the event.

You can use the graphics to further build those relationships as you craft new content around various parts of the event conversations.

Illustration of graphic recording on different devices

Content Support

Do you publish articles to a blog or send out emails to your audience? Event notes can make great graphics later content. They can also help spark content. After an event, use segments of the overarching graphic as images for your blog or email copy, spinning the content from that segment of the talk.

This can be a huge benefit when it comes to brainstorming your content marketing strategy. You can find all kinds of gems in your illustrated event notes.

Capitalize on Networking

Live sketches are really great for meeting speakers. They help captivate the audience and they make a great product for later. If you give your speakers a digital copy of the finished visual notetaking board, they can use it on their own channels—which points back to you. This helps you form better partnerships with your speakers and increase your reach by connecting with anyone they choose to share the visual with on their own channels.

Hire Graphic Facilitators

Want people to remember your next corporate event?  Our visual note takers are ready to help you boost engagement and deliver lasting results. Check out our portfolio to see what we’ve done for other client’s company events and then contact us to schedule a consultation!

5 Reasons to Use Graphic Facilitation at Virtual Conferences

5 Reasons to Use Graphic Facilitation at Virtual Conferences

Planning an important virtual conference and want to get the most out of your budget? With graphic facilitation, an offsite live artist will join your virtual meeting or event and sketch out your ideas in a large scale visual format. 

Leveraging graphic recording will make your event better and more cost-effective for several critical reasons.

5 Ways Graphic Facilitation Can Improve Virtual Conferences & Events

Visual from graphic recording about increasing audience engagement

Recording Important Takeaways

Ever finish a meeting or conference and feel a little foggy? You can spend hours of your day on something, only to feel like you aren’t really sure what was accomplished.

When you participate in a conference with graphic facilitation, you will be able to literally see a map of the discussion. The Visual practitioners will help structure the final illustration in such a way that important takeaways show noticeable hierarchy over conversation details and smaller notes.

Increasing the Mileage of Your Event

A lot of hard work goes into planning and realizing conferences—whether they are virtual or in-person. You can get more out of every dollar when you capitalize on the event long after it’s over. How are you increasing the mileage?

When you use a graphic facilitator and graphic recorder at your event, you are creating content that can be used far beyond the event. You can create a video that is great for YouTube, your website, training purposes, or onboarding.

Including all Learners in the Discussion

Chances are, your speaker can’t draw. And, let’s be honest: most slides are boring.

But, how are your visual learners getting the information? While some get information well from audible speaking, most people are far faster at learning visually. This is a key reason why speakers use slides, images, and props—we know how important visual learning is to our audience! Make sure you include visual aids for supported group learning.

With graphic recorders, you get live illustrations visually supporting the conversation. It’s a captivating and powerful tool that helps your visual learners stay focused and get the most out of the presentation. When paired with captions, it’s an excellent tool for including attendees that are hearing-impaired.

Live sketch artist using graphic facilitation tool on ipad

Illustrating the Bigger Picture (In Real-Time!)

Ever had someone keep circling back to one point? Or, remember how you could only recall a couple of small takeaways from a past conference? Virtual notes help avoid both of these problems. They help structure the conversation to cover the overarching topic so that many points are discussed. And then, we help drive home a number of points so that your participants can see the large scale picture. They get to watch it all unfold in real-time!

Create Professional Content

You are on a budget and can’t afford studio-quality video of your conference. You most likely don’t have access to a professional set and live events tend to look like a step above home video from the 90s. 

With graphic recorders illustrating your event, you will get professional-looking content. And, you can brand it by incorporating your logo, colors, or style. Check out our portfolio for examples of illustrations we’ve created for past clients. 

Graphic Facilitation & Recording Experts

testimonial about graphic recording services

We’re passionate about helping our clients make their ideas understandable and actionable. Our industry-leading graphic recording artists will help transform your virtual conference and make it stand out for all of the right reasons. 

Get in touch with us today to start planning your next virtual conference or event!

Remote Sales Meeting Ideas & Themes to Kickoff 2021

Remote Sales Meeting Ideas & Themes to Kickoff 2021

After a year living through a global health pandemic, the Sales Kickoff will be even more important this year than before. Celebrating the “2020 pivot” or planning for the “2021 Rebound” is exciting but comes with a challenge. How do we keep people (likely a remote audience) engaged during this year’s  Sales Kickoff? 

We recommend going all-in on a theme.

Benefits of a 2021 Sales Kickoff Theme

Maybe a theme sounds cheesy.

But, the reality is: the right theme will make a big difference.

Successful sales kickoff meetings will boost morale and set big goals to help your sales teams achieve those big wins. And, whether your sales meeting is in-person or virtual, a successful event can help your company get the edge on your competition as a powerful team-building experience. Your theme will help set goals and cement concepts and inspiration that could last the rest of the year.

Choosing a fitting theme will help make your sales kickoff meeting more effective and get the year started on a good foot. 

Businesswoman holding placard with we can do this text as support during virus epidemic.

Address the Challenges of 2021

The right sales kickoff theme can pinpoint what your new perspective is after a year of worldwide economic changes. Don’t skirt the issues caused by the pandemic—make them into a focal point by highlighting the solutions. As Jim Collins stresses in “Good to Great,”, you must confront the brutal facts and then pivot to optimism. 

Start by considering how your sales process has changed (or needs to change) by thinking about the following:

  • Innovation and embracing change
  • Motivation to gain back lost ground
  • Excellence in the face of challenges
  • Power to overcome obstacles
  • Adapting to new expectations
  • Digital migration and marketing strategies
  • Local outreach and community building

You can use this perspective to narrow down the scope of your catchy meeting theme, which should then help set expectations for 2021. It might directly tie into certain challenges or workflows, like cold calling or sales cycles, but it should still be positive with a can-do attitude.

Keep Your Message on Track

The theme will help keep your entire corporate event tied together. This is especially important if you have a guest keynote speaker. You want the meeting to flow—not feel like a disjointed series of quick trainings and updates. The theme will pull everything together and keep all participants focused on a primary goal.

In 2019, some of the major companies used these themes for their sales kickoff meetings:

  • Behr Paint: Playing to Win
  • Samsung: Activate
  • The Home Depot: All In
  • Pearson: Re!magine
  • Employers Insurance: The Future is Now

Make it Engaging and Memorable

The majority of reps forget information after their training. Research from Gartner found that 70% of reps forget information from training within a week and 87% of reps will forget within the month. You are going to have to kick it up a notch to hold focus AND make the message last. If not, you will squander this big investment. 

With the right theme, you have a unique opportunity to drive home your point in a fun way. A catchy theme is something the team can get behind. It can be plastered on t-shirts and promo times throughout the year, helping employees recall the lessons learned during your sales kickoff meeting.

To really drive home your theme and event, you can use a live sketch artist to illustrate the concepts discussed. Your sketch artist can help you come up with the right color scheme and engaging elements that will support visual learners. It’s hard to stop watching a visual sketch artist and people get excited to participate so they can see their ideas get added to the board.

After it’s done, lots of things can be done with the final event sketch. You might choose to display your sketch for a social media photo or video, keep it in the office for a visual reminder throughout the year, send in an email followup, or used as part of a condensed digital file on hand for onboarding new hires.

Set a Mantra

Use your theme as a mantra to motivate your team. The theme should become a sort of battle cry that you can rally your employees around. Using a simple phrase (or even just one word), you can immediately pull people back to the message of your meeting. You want a theme that is:

  • Catchy and positive
  • Easy to remember
  • Fits your company goals
  • Offers a clear message
  • Offers a lot of creative freedom

Meeting Ideas and Themes for 2021

Big kickoff meetings for sales and marketing has been a common way for companies to kickstart a new year with a strong focus.

When it comes to your own sales team meetings, there are so many ways to choose a theme.

Think about activities you want to include and the overarching goal you want to focus on. Popular songs and phrases (or variations of them) are commonly used because they are catchy. Keep it short, ideally under 5 words. Keep it motivational and positive to inspire action. Here are some great sales meeting theme examples for 2021:

  • Switch it On
  • Stronger. Better. Faster.
  • Brave New World
  • Don’t Stop Believing
  • Now or Never
  • Imagine That
  • Level Up
  • All In
  • Stand By Me
  • Together We Can
  • Run the World
  • Power of the Player
  • Ain’t No Stopping Us Now
  • My Time to Shine

Once you’ve chosen a theme, integrate it into your event with team building themed games, speaker topics, decorations, swag and more. The more you are able to incorporate your theme into the elements of your event, the more prominent your focus will be throughout the meeting.

Hire a sketch artist to illustrate the in-person meeting or virtual event live. As your attendees watch, the central theme and major points of the meeting will be illustrated into a cool thought graphic that captivates the direction of your event.

If you are looking for a way to make your sales kickoff a success for 2021, we can help.

The Sketch Effect offers professional artists, skilled at live-sketching events for companies like yours. This attention-grabbing meeting element is memorable and increases engagement. Connect with us today and let’s chat about your next corporate meeting!

How to Improve Webinars 101: Book a Live Sketch Artist

How to Improve Webinars 101: Book a Live Sketch Artist

So, you are planning a webinar and need fresh ideas. You want to make a presentation about important topics, but you don’t want to put in too much effort if it won’t garner much attention. Webinars are a lot of work! Reap the benefits of a great virtual event with this helpful guide for improving webinars.

Tips for Planning a Great Webinar

You already know the basics of planning a webinar and use content marketing to promote it. You’ve considered webinar platforms, and maybe you’ve already done a live webinar. This time around, try implementing these online event planning tips to take your virtual seminar to the next level.

  • Set clear objectives and track top metrics
  • Create a landing page specific to your webinar registration for lead generation
  • Use your audience’s pain points to set your webinar topic and to draft a catchy title
  • Schedule your webinar during peak engagement times
  • Mix live and pre-recorded elements to offer smoother transitions
  • Build out a visual presentation for impact
  • Do a dry run to practice delivery, sound, visuals, and tech setups

Why Book a Sketch Artist for Your Webinar?

Visual note-taking is one way to really change the entire dynamic of your event. People get distracted when left with a single shot of a speaker. They tend to get bored easily if the visuals are basic slides. With all of the interesting content being pumped at us on Facebook, YouTube, and other social media channels, it’s really no wonder we find it hard to focus on virtual corporate events. 

Unless you make it easy, relevant, and interesting, people will most likely tune out (even if they’ve signed on to attend the webinar). Your event is always competing with another nearby device, kids, household chores, coworkers and so much more.

Most of your attendees will not feel any responsibility towards your event or brand. You need an attention-grabber.

Honestly, it’s hard to look away during a live sketch event. The sketch artist works quickly to pinpoint major themes in the presentation. Not only does the final product look incredible — it offers a visual manifestation of the conversation. A sketch artist will:

  • Capture Important Ideas
  • Keep Momentum Going
  • Allow Visualization of the Plan
  • Create Shareable Imagery
  • Captivate with Visual Development
  • Focus on the Core of Conversation

Take Your Webinar to the Next Level with The Sketch Effect

The Sketch Effect live artists will bring real-time visual note-taking that increases focus and communication. There are three ways you can utilize a sketch artist to make your webinar something special this year:

Live Sketching

For in person events, live sketching helps your audience synthesize the big ideas and also adds a fun, creative, and unique element to a live event.  

And the value doesn’t stop there:  display the physical sketches in a common area throughout the event, send them out as a one-of-a-kind post-event follow-up to attendees, or share them online to spread the ideas even further.

So, for your next in-person event, consider live sketching to drive higher engagement from the audience.  Stand out. 

Virtual Sketching

For an all-virtual event or webinar series, an artist can join the virtual setup to provide “Remote Notes.” As the host is speaking or presenting, the artist will be illustrating. You will have control over which screen is at the forefront and you will be sent a copy of the sketch soon after the event. 

Your target audience will instinctively want to pay attention to an event sketch artist as the concepts are drawn on the screen right in front of them in real-time. Not only does this increase audience engagement, but it helps with retention because of the visual learning factor.

Video Animation

The Sketch Effect’s “Animated Hand” Video service is an effective way to create illustrated videos that are custom-fit to your virtual event. Whether you are doing a webinar that is entirely pre-recorded or a hybrid with part live, the animation option allows you to preplan video segments. 

The visual graphics help support your recorded message and pull out the key points. Pairing these animated segments with a live speaker is a great way to get the best of both worlds on a smaller budget. These illustrated video segments can be versatile, making great additions to your social media or embedded in a blog post too!

Trying to plan a GREAT webinar? We have lots of ideas. If you are looking for some strong graphics to help cement your message with your audience, connect with us today!