The Greater Boston Food Bank (GBFB) hosts the Farm to Table event every September as a way to express their appreciation to all their partners and advocates for their generous contributions. It is traditionally held on a local farm that produces food for the food bank. In 2020, GBFB had to come up with alternative plans for the annual in-person gala event because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
GBFB, a naturally resourceful and responsive organization, reached out to VDA to help them produce a customized virtual fundraising event for its attendees. Hence, how the Farm-to-Screen virtual experience was born.
Partnering with VDA, the GBFB aimed to produce a digital event that would meet its fundraising and awareness objectives. GBFB was looking to:
VDA produced an animated 3D flyover video as part of the event’s e-invitation to get attendees excited about the Farm-to-Screen virtual experience. This created a lot of buzz and excitement from invitees on social media channels.
With the host’s goals in mind, VDA created a virtual fundraiser that was an honest reflection of the actual live event. We constructed a 3D farm environment with a barn, an outdoor fireplace, a jukebox, and many more interactive stations. Through these stations, the host was able to interact with the attendees, providing them with insightful information, games, and video content. The intuitive interface allowed for easy navigation through the virtual space, keeping attendees interested and engaged. Attendees loved being immersed in the hyper-realistic digital version of a familiar place and discovering carefully produced and curated digital content.
The ability to access the virtual experience from all devices without compromising quality helped to draw more attendees to the event and kept them involved in the experience longer.
GBFB wanted to host both pre-recorded content as well as live video options. To make the virtual experience more inviting and cozy, VDA designed a fireplace station for live chat sessions and an outdoor cinema site, where attendees could watch a selection of pre-recorded presentations on-demand. We placed a donation jar in every interactive station with the goal to maximize donation contributions from attendees, which proved to have been very effective.
The very first GBFB virtual fundraising event was a huge success. Our client was satisfied with both the look and functionality of the virtual experience, as well as the positive feedback we received from the online attendees.
The Farm to Screen experience surpassed the host’s expectations and resulted in two times as many attendees and four times as much fundraising revenue in comparison to the previous year.