PlanetPress for Life: #OL20PARTY
Three weeks ago, we had the most awesome party to celebrate our 20th anniversary happening this year and the launch of our new products. The #OL20Party was an awesome success and the best part of it was, everything was running on PlanetPress products. Well, almost everything! So here I am, describing what we did, how we did it, and the level of awesomeness we felt at each step. When I say we I am referring to me and my buddy and colleague Jonathan. So, let’s take a look at my part in it!
Invitation, Confirmation and Reminder Emails
I’ll admit, this was pretty much the easiest part of all of this. I mean, all I had to do was to take the email’s HTML and CSS given to me by my friends at Marketing, put them in PlanetPress Connect Designer, and then send the emails… Right? Well, yeah! That was pretty much it! There were collateral tasks of course – each email that we sent also had a web-only version hosted on our party server, just in case the email didn’t show up perfectly in someone’s email client. To do this, I had a process in PlanetPress Workflow that generated the html versions and saved them, before I sent the actual email. And then, sending the emails themselves was done directly from the PlanetPress Connect Designer interface. The email led the invitees to a RSVP web page where we gathered information about them that we used for different processes at the party. And once they confirmed their attendance, a confirmation email was sent. The confirmation worked a little different from the invitations since they were sent on request. A simple process received the confirmation data from the RSVP process on the party server, generated a web version and then sent that one confirmation email. And that was it. Fairly straightforward, really!
Ok, I lied. The printed invitation was the simplest one to make. I was given a PDF by our graphic designer which contained everything in the invitation except what we wanted to add – the first name, the invitation code and the QR code that could be scanned to get onto the RSVP site. Even with the specific fonts provided, it was really no problem at all. Alright alright there was a small glitch with the font for the name, but that was quickly resolved with a workaround and won’t be an issue for you by the time you need it.
Almost at the same level as the printed invitation, the guest badges were done from an existing PDF where I had to add the name, company and the QR code. The scanning of the code was an important aspect of the event as it was a trigger for us to interact with our guests. One process was to trigger a text message once they got a drink, notifying them about a service we were providing if ‘things got out of hand’. Badges were pre-printed from the list of confirmed guests (we had a few extra ones which came in handy for last-minute guests!). Upon arrival, we scanned their QR Code on their invitation card or the PDF we attached to our guest’s confirmation email. This action allowed us to know who our guests were and which badge to provide them. No mixed identity here.
Arguably the most complex of all the things I did for the party. But the Photobooth was also the most awesome. Simply put, I used the Capture OnTheGo technology and created a COTG document sent to a couple of iPad Mini tablets which were used to take pictures of guests during the event using COTG technology (notably, the Camera API). You can read more about Capture OnTheGo on another article I wrote: No, I mean, really, what is Capture OnTheGo? There was also a box where our camera girl could tag guests (a simple autocomplete feature). When the photo was submitted, a few things happened. A PlanetPress Workflow process handled it all – grabbing the picture data, generating an HTML page with the picture and some social media sharing buttons, and then sending an SMS to all the guests tagged in the picture containing a link where they could view the page and share. Given enough time I could have scanned the badges of each guest to automatically tag them instead of searching for their name, but the QR Code API was so new that I didn’t have time to integrate that.
I’ll admit, there were a couple of minor headaches caused by creating some of these processes. But all in all, I had a huge amount of fun preparing these things and seeing them take shape. When the invitations came back from the printer, all shiny and pretty, I was really proud of myself. And when people lined up for the photobooth…Well that was just pure awesomeness. I hope I shared a little bit of the excitement (and not too much of the stress) that came with preparing this party, and I hope everyone who attended, enjoyed it! Also I hope to post more of these things here, whenever I come up with some cool new uses for PlanetPress Connect, Capture OnTheGo, and other Objectif Lune products!
Is it a crime to be a sell-out for the company I work for? Nah 😛
View pictures of the party here.