After a successful Berlin-based hybrid first edition in 2021, we took our metaverse event a step further in 2022 – by organising the world’s first 24-hour Meta Festival that took place across three time zones in Asia Pacific, Europe and the Americas. More than 6,500 attendees from 109 countries – that’s a coverage of 55% of the whole world – gathered in the highly immersive Metapolis metaverse world on June 28th to hear from 123 leading web3 innovators, brand marketers, futurists and technologists. Several hundred others tuned in to live streams on YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter and Twitch to take a peek into the metaverse.
A look back
In 2021, after more than a year of sitting in boring webinars due to the ongoing pandemic, we decided that the ‘new normal’ just wasn’t good enough and reinvented virtual events by founding Meta Festival – a first of its kind festival experience taking place in ‘Metapolis’, a tailored virtual world realised by our partner JOURNEE – The Metaverse Company™ on Unreal Engine. After all, everyone’s talking about the metaverse. But, according to our research, only 16% of people understand what it is. We wanted to change that.
Same tech excellence. But bigger and better.
After having realised immersive web3 experiences and NFT projects for clients such as H&Mbeyond, Motorsport Games and The Drone Racing League, we wanted to take our Meta Festival to the next level and make it even bigger and better in 2022.
We once again partnered with JOURNEE – The Metaverse Company™ to bring Metapolis back to life. While the landscape was stylised differently from the first version, the virtual world once again proved to be an example of the limitless possibilities the metaverse offers, showcasing spectacular 3D visualisations in raytraced rendering quality.
All that attendees needed to access Metapolis was a device and an internet connection. Thanks to a collaboration with Ready Player Me, each visitor had the opportunity to create their own custom avatar with which they could dance and move as well as walk or even fly through Metapolis. An integrated chat allowed them to communicate with each other.
8 million people reached
First edition 2021: 4,000+ Visitors
First edition 2021: 40+ Speakers
Inside the Metaverse
Five unique stages
Once they were inside Metapolis, attendees were free to explore five unique stages focused on Web3, Pop Culture, the Betterverse, Immersive Experiences, and Diehard Tech. Speakers on these stages included experts from Netflix, Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, and more. Each of the stages had its own theme and several screens that attendees could approach with their avatars to tune into the talks.
In addition to these five stages of ongoing sessions, there was a Main Stage which featured live programming tailored to each region, taking place between 2pm – 5pm local time in Singapore, Amsterdam and New York. On the Main Stage, visitors got to hear from top-notch speakers such as web3 experts Cathy Hackl, Paula Kilgariff, Diego Borgo and Gmoney, as well as leaders from brands across industries, including Google Cloud, Ready Player Me, The Volkswagen Group, H&Mbeyond, HAPE, The Fabricant, Coca Cola, WIRED, disguise, Burberry, Heineken, Salesforce, DRESSX, Headspace, Decentraland, Epic Games, Algorand, PwC UK, Campaign, Forrester, and more.
Cocktails, karaoke & NFTs
Aside from being packed with information and inspiration, our Meta Festival also featured a Playground area with fun workshops (e.g. yodeling), karaoke, live magic, cocktail classes and yoga that encouraged attendees to walk around the grounds and experience a true festival feeling. For those visitors who craved after-party-vibes, there were even live DJ sets in the so called ‘boiler room’…
Additionally, since NFTs are the topic of the moment, we of course also hosted an NFT workshop during Meta Festival. Furthermore, attendees could browse an NFT Gallery inside of Metapolis to purchase a number of custom NFTs created specially for the event.
Livestreams on LinkedIn, Twitch, Twitter, and YouTube
Although Metapolis was freely accessible for anybody that registered for Meta Festival, we wanted to also give less tech-savvy audiences the chance to experience our experts and speakers. Therefore, we streamed the live talks happening on the Main Stage to LinkedIn, Twitch, Twitter, and YouTube, allowing us to reach an even bigger audience.
Behind the scenes
Even though Meta Festival 2022 was a fully immersive event, it took a big and committed IRL crew that worked 24h around the clock to make it all happen.
We flew our hosts for all three time zones to Amsterdam, where we had set up a studio with a greenscreen for the live moderations. An external production team worked hard to guarantee a smooth experience for the attendees.
At the same time, a dedicated team of Depsters managed the communication with the visitors (disguised as ‘Happy Zebra’, DEPT®s very own mascot) and made sure that all speakers were briefed and ready for their panels.
Until next year!
Meta Festival 2022 was a big evolution from 2021’s Berlin-based hybrid edition. And, from sponsorship opportunities to VR headset capability, there’s only more we can accomplish from here. We’re excited and hungry for Meta Festival 2023, because who knows what next year will bring… Stay tuned!
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Executive Creative Director