For five years running we’ve helped Hasbro, a play and entertainment company, create their Preview Rooms at their HQ just outside of London. The S/S and A/W events are always an exciting chance for buyers from all over the globe to get a much-sought-after, first glimpse of the new ranges Hasbro will be launching in the months to come, and for Hasbro staff to build and strengthen relationships with valued buyers.
But with social gathering and travel bans in full force during Covid-19, Hasbro’s live event had to move online. Our challenge was to ensure the retailer guests still felt the Hasbro Preview Rooms’ magic and fun, albeit from their homes.
Guests were going to be viewing Hasbro’s newest additions on a screen from their living rooms, so we wanted to make them feel like the Preview experience still had the ‘human touch’. We created a journey to get them excited about their ‘destination’ - the virtual previews which would be hosted via Zoom by Hasbro’s key staff.
We developed a microsite, a Hasbro home, to house everything guests needed to prepare them for their virtual preview. As this was new ‘territory’ for everyone, we wanted to make the experience as relaxed and playful as possible - the ‘Hasbro home’ had three doors which unlocked at different times, leading up to going live.
Each door revealed new content, like a fun employee-welcome video which introduced viewers to the Hasbro staff that would be hosting their virtual Preview calls. To make guests feel more at ease, it also made light of potential Zoom-meeting blunders that can happen when you’re working from home with kids and pets...
To give the experience the ‘physical touch’ the guests would have had at the live event, we sent attendees gift boxes to enjoy with their virtual preview, which included sweet treats, refreshments, branded stationary and a VR headset.
We also created ‘The Great Hasbro Toy Hunt’, a Virtual Reality (VS) game that required players to find hidden Hasbro toys in a messy kid’s room. It added to the fun and provided a great distraction for their kids or partners while they would be having their virtual preview.
And the actual virtual previews? Well, that’s all a bit hush-hush I’m afraid. With this project, over the past five years confidentiality has always been especiallykey, and still is - toy espionage is a real threat believe it or not.
Pivoting what has traditionally always been an in-person, live event to a virtual experience seemed like unchartered territory. But with the right tools, tech and preparation, we were able to create a magical digital experience that still had the human touch (and think about how kinder to our planet all of this virtual working is in the now!).