Heidi Legein is the founder and Chief Executive Guru at The MICE Guru, a full-service destination management company consulting in – and producing all types of MICE events for global brands virtually or in destination; all over Norway.
The MICE Guru matches companies and their corporate identity to tailored concepts, experiences and locations focusing on maximising objectives.
Heidi is also the creator of “The digital trip”; an innovative, immersive virtual event concept and deep-dive strategy, redefining destination marketing, virtual incentives and corporate collaboration platforms.
What experience can you draw upon to successfully judge the ETAs?
As Chief Executive Guru at The MICE Guru, I have in the past year taken a deep dive into event tech; taken virtual certification, learned, tested, demoed, tried, implemented event tech all around, attended all major virtual events and discussed findings within our communities. We have taken a closer look at a wide variety of tools, platforms, AI and seen countless examples of event delivery, which we have carefully assessed.
We have specialised in delivering digital strategy services with focus on new content, tech, virtual/hybrid events and year-round community building for destinations and brands.
How long have you worked in the events industry and what keeps you interested in it?
I’ve been in the industry for 14 years and am truly passionate about it. We are in the business of delivering emotions and I am currently pushing buttons reminding people of that and the importance of delivering engaging, interactive, and moving virtual events through implementation of the right event tech for their goals.
The freedom for endless creativity and learning keeps me going and inspires me to design and innovate on a daily basis.
Best (and worst?) moments working in the events industry?
During the course of my career, I’ve been a part of developing numerous global brand experiences from activations and product launches to conferences and incentives and there are so many highlights! I particularly enjoy creating concepts that bring to life an idea and use mesmerising destination backdrops and secrets. I currently deliver DMC services for Norway; a country with endless opportunities for inspiration. My best moments are every time I manage to translate a client’s message into experiences that make a difference and this pandemic has been, next to being the worst moment in terms of challenges, one of the best ones too.
The level of surprise when creating an immersive virtual event is so rewarding!
Favourite piece of tech for work and personal life?
I am currently really jumping ship quite regularly and will use different tech depending on the project. I did however become a big fan of Slack as a collaboration tool for our teams, am still impressed by Brella’s matchmaking and am currently beta testing virtual event studio software that will change the game completely!
What’s your go-to piece of tech when working on an event and why?
Each event needs to right event platform and a tech stack should be built out of objectives. So I make it my mission to find the right tools for each client, but I’m a firm believer in using a proper event platform that allows you to integrate all the features your event requires.
What was the last event on which you worked?
We’ve delivered a global destination showcase event called ‘The digital trip’; a 2 day immersive journey through the destination of Stavanger, Norway.
It was packed with exciting discovery and activities and engaged the audience from 8 weeks before the event. It’s been used as a case study around the world as an example of how a virtual event can be truly engaging and exciting + what destinations and brands should be doing to be relevant in a hybrid world.
From your experience, how has tech been best utilised at an event? / What’s the best way to utilise tech at an event?
To be particularly honest, I am one of the people who believes not enough has been done yet in terms of designing truly lasting virtual experiences and I am trying to change that on a daily basis. Education is important and creating an understanding of the possibilities key. Also in a virtual setting, imagination should be limitless! All too many are stuck staring at a specific software or tool they’ve been forced to contract for a period of time and in the end you get a series of copy paste events. I love combining event tech with a live setting; live venues and real locations rather than studios. I prefer a focus on quality content production and streaming in an inspiring environment. So use the tech to your advantage in creating rather than letting the tech be in charge.
We all learn from our mistakes! What was the biggest lesson you learned from a mistake since being in the industry?
A confirmed project is never confirmed until the signed contract is delivered. I once lost a massive project after half a year of work and confirmation all is in order, only due to the fact a decision was made on a global level to halt all global events of the company in question and a missing signature. Painful.
What are you most looking forward to at the ETAs
Discovering all entries as part of the judging panel
What do events, such as the ETAs, mean to you? / Why is it important to recognise the achievements of tech companies?
Showcasing tech achievements is a big part of educating the industry and its clients about the possibilities and increasing the quality of events around the globe.
Quality events reflect on the industry as a whole and make the world go round!
If you could only use one piece of tech when working on an event, what would that be?
A proper streaming tool. We are not going back to a world where that no longer will be a requirement.
The Event Technology Awards celebrate excellence in event technology. Entries are open now, find out more info here