GEVME Delivers Real-Time Content via Low-Code Virtual Event Platform to 60,000 Event Participants
The global virtual events market is set to grow 23.7 percent annually from 2021 to 2028. In addition to being more cost effective and environmentally friendly than in-person events—due to the reduced need to travel—organizers can extend the geographic reach of online conferences. The Singapore FinTech Festival (SFF) in November 2021, for example, drew 60,000 online attendees from 160 countries, representing a 33 percent increase in attendance from the SFF in 2020.
The digital platform supporting the SFF in 2021 was GEVME, a fully integrated event management and marketing software-based solution built by GlobalSign.in. GEVME includes multiple application components catering to full event lifecycle management, including the Virtual Event Builder, launched in 2019. Designed as a low-code visual editing tool, non-technical professionals such as marketers for SFF have used the GEVME Virtual Event Builder to create highly customized venues and experiences.
By developing iteratively, and working closely with AWS solutions architects, we’re always discovering new ways of doing things in a more elegant yet cost-effective manner.”
Creating Virtual Experiences Seamlessly
The GEVME platform and its various components were developed on Amazon Web Services (AWS), the official cloud event operator for the 2021 SFF. A few months prior to the event in November 2021, 23 marketing and operations professionals from the organizing team used the Virtual Event Builder to build event “locations”, or webpages, without any developer assistance.
Veemal Gungadin, CEO of GEVME explains, “Marketers can drag and drop to build unique event pages and can visualize what each page will look like in real time from the backend.” During the event, organizers use the tool to deliver real-time content updates, including announcements to drive attendees to an upcoming session.
Autoscaling Supports Fast Provisioning
Aspiring to build a cost-efficient, scalable solution, GEVME used a serverless approach with containers to develop its Virtual Event Builder. GEVME’s platform can scale instantly to support sudden spikes in traffic, such as at the start of big events when attendees rush to join a session or following a pop-up announcement.
Organizers of the SFF delivered more than 500 personalized announcements to different target groups, varying in size from 1,000 to 50,000 attendees. The Virtual Event Builder relies on AWS Lambda serverless compute, Amazon CloudWatch, and Amazon API Gateway to capture metrics around clicks and engagement during live events to deliver results in a custom analytics dashboard to exhibitors. Amazon API Gateway also provides customized views and widgets to different segments of event attendees.
GEVME also uses Amazon Elastic Container Service (Amazon ECS) with the AWS Fargate serverless compute engine to provision and autoscale Virtual Event Builder containers. “We can spin up new containers in Amazon ECS in under 2 minutes. This really helps with managing load on the GEVME platform. If we hadn’t used a serverless approach to deploy instances, configuration and load balancing would take much longer and require manual intervention,” says Akash Joosery, DevSecOps engineer at GEVME.
Fast loading times are a key performance metric when attendees evaluate virtual events. The business uses Amazon ElastiCache for Redis to strategically cache session content just before a new session is scheduled to start on the conference agenda. In doing so, the load time for refreshing pages has improved from 800 milliseconds to as low as 100 milliseconds in some cases.
Running 4,000 Virtual Meetings with Targeted Leads
For the event organizer, the key performance indicators for SFF were attendance and engagement, both of which influenced how satisfied sponsors were with the event. GEVME leverages an artificial intelligence-driven recommendations engine to match attendees to sponsors and exhibitors.
After making a match, the GEVME platform integrates with Amazon Chime to facilitate low-latency virtual meetings. In line with the SFF’s mission to promote dialogue, over 4,000 virtual meetings were conducted through GEVME at the 2021 conference. “Our recommendations engine ensured there was a steady stream of traffic in target areas, just as it would be in a physical arena. But it’s even better now, because sponsors have real-time analytics to view the profile of each person visiting their exhibit or session,” Gungadin says.
Each exhibitor at SFF received a tool to run their own marketing campaigns and gain audience insights during the event. Some exhibitors used the GEVME tool to perform real-time polling of attendee subsets, such as those who attended their sessions, to improve behavior profiling of targeted leads. “We received great feedback from sponsors who were happy with the results, leads, and branding opportunities they received through SFF,” adds Gungadin.
Gaining Lower, Pay-Per-Use Costing with Automation
The ability to rapidly iterate with the help of managed services such as Amazon Chime and Amazon ECS continues to propel innovation at GEVME, leading to new solutions including the Virtual Event Builder. “We’re constantly building new features and removing less productive features thanks to AWS out-of-the-box services,” Gungadin says. “Fast iteration is the most significant benefit of running on AWS. In most cases, whenever we tackle a new project, either AWS already provides a service or has one in the pipeline to speed up our development.”
Furthermore, by harnessing built-in automation, GEVME has reduced its cost to serve and lowered pricing on some event packages as a result. “We used to have large teams on standby during events, but most monitoring and remediation activities have been addressed with the self-healing capabilities and automatic scaling on AWS,” Gungadin says.
GEVME has also shifted to a pay-per-use pricing model for its platform. While its customer base remains primarily enterprises and public sector organizations, the company is now targeting more small and medium businesses. Demand for its platform is also rising in new markets such as the United States.
“The fact that we’re able to control costs on AWS paves the way for us to serve new segments profitably. By developing iteratively, and working closely with AWS solutions architects, we’re always discovering new ways of doing things in a more elegant yet cost-effective manner,” says Gungadin.
To learn more, visit aws.amazon.com/media-services/
GlobalSign.In is the company behind the GEVME platform, a digital solution for managing the full lifecycle of events. GEVME includes multiple components such as the low-code Virtual Event Builder that helps organizers create immersive virtual experiences.
Benefits of AWS
- Autoscales to serve up to 50,000 concurrent requests
- Improves page loading time from 800 to 100 milliseconds
- Facilitates 4,000 virtual meetings with target leads
- Provisions new containers in 2 minutes
- Iterates fast to deliver new features
- Lowers pricing to attract new SMB customers
AWS Services Used
Amazon Elastic Container Service (Amazon ECS)
Amazon ECS is a fully managed container orchestration service that makes it easy for you to deploy, manage, and scale containerized applications.
AWS Fargate is a serverless, pay-as-you-go compute engine that lets you focus on building applications without managing servers. AWS Fargate is compatible with both Amazon Elastic Container Service (ECS) and Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS).
Amazon Chime is a communications service that lets you meet, chat, and place business calls inside and outside your organization, all using a single application.
Amazon API Gateway
Amazon API Gateway is a fully managed service that makes it easy for developers to create, publish, maintain, monitor, and secure APIs at any scale. APIs act as the "front door" for applications to access data, business logic, or functionality from your backend services.
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