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Meet Coda, a revolutionary document editing company that celebrated the power of rituals and creativity with a global block party on Hopin

Meet Coda, a revolutionary document editing company that celebrated the power of rituals and creativity with a global block party on Hopin
PLANNING A NEW KIND OF EVENT

The party goes virtual with Hopin

Coda is an all-in-one document editing software that gives users an integrated experience, allowing them to take notes, talk to one another, add tables, and connect to third-party software for added functionality. Big-name brands, students, and nonprofits all use Coda to take their document creation game to the next level. 

In 2018, Coda launched Block Party, its official annual conference, to mark the release of its beta version. Since then, the gathering has developed into a flagship event for Coda’s community of makers. 

In 2021, the document editing business used Hopin to provide a new, virtual Block Party experience to more than a thousand global users. The main goal of the event was to instill confidence and expert-level product knowledge in creators who use Coda. The team also wanted to create a library of content for their marketing and sales campaigns. And they set out to offer attendees a shared experience that reflected the immersive feel of Coda’s document editor.

"We customized the expo hall to not really be an expo hall, and we could call it the Makerspace – which really made it feel more like a Coda environment versus a platform we’re plugging your content into […] The fact that the event could have branded locations was really cool." –Andrew Stinger, Product and Corporate Marketing Lead, Coda

With zero in-house event professionals and just three months to plan and execute Block Party, the Coda team turned to Hopin. They tapped into Hopin’s customization options, easily turning backgrounds, and custom animations into a comprehensive, clear expression of the Coda brand. Hopin’s expo area also helped facilitate organic interactions among attendees, supporting the immersive feel the Coda team hoped to achieve. 

PLANNING A NEW KIND OF EVENT

"StreamYard would make it easy for us internally to continue doing event-based activations even without our production team [...] Based on the training we got, I feel confident actually being the operator for the stream and managing content."

Andrew Stinger
Product and Corporate Marketing Lead, Coda
IT’S SHOWTIME

A celebration of the best business rituals

Block Party’s theme focused on personal and professional rituals inspired by leaders from a range of industries – everything from competitive poker to customer service.

Coda CEO Shishir Mehrota kicked off Block Party with a keynote speech on the history of the company and some plans for the future. The event went on to explore rituals related to productivity, building company culture, and more – all while showing how Coda can support the documentation and evangelism of those practices.

Speakers included: 

  • Arianna Huffington, who discussed the "ritual reset" mindfulness practice she uses to guide her teams
  • Nick Mehta, CEO of Gainsight, who shared his thoughts on meaningful connections with customers
  • Rahul Vohra, founder and CEO of Superhuman, who spoke about creating product evangelists, and
  • Annie Duke, a professional poker player, who shared some of the personal rituals that have helped her make better decisions. 

Speakers enjoyed a seamless experience with Hopin’s virtual green room, and all their presentations were paired with a corresponding Coda document. Many presenters chose to pre-record their talks, then join for live Q&A sessions powered by Hopin’s audience engagement tools. 

"I think our speakers had a super positive experience because they got to focus on what they do best, which is deliver compelling content that they believe in. And we were able to operationalize and provide meaningful feedback." –Andrew Stinger, Product and Corporate Marketing Lead, Coda

The Coda team created a "Makerspace" in Hopin’s expo area. This approach gave creators a place where they could connect with one another. Coda also set up booths dedicated to specific product features and new releases where makers could jump in and chat directly with members of the Coda team. The booths were a big hit, attracting hundreds of creators at a time.

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Hopin’s features allowed Coda to create a truly immersive experience

Block Party became a truly immersive experience for attendees. The Coda team leveraged Hopin’s Q&A and chat functionality, and the platform’s session moderation capabilities allowed them to curate questions and keep conversations aligned with the spirit of the event. Here are a few Hopin features that helped make Block Party a success:

  • Customizability: Coda turned every element of the event into an expression of its brand.
  • Ticketing: The Coda team used Hopin’s ticketing functionality to set up different timed ticket holder groups, send swag bags to early bird registrants, and offer VIP as well as friends and family ticket types. 
  • Audience engagement: Members of the Coda team moderated questions and comments on the fly, prioritizing them and making sure all conversation aligned with the spirit of Block Party.
  • Chat: Two-way conversation and interactivity were key to the event, so the Coda team relied on Hopin’s robust chat functionality to communicate with attendees and drive engagement.
  • Expo area: Coda turned this area into a Makerspace where attendees could hang out with one another, visit virtual product booths to learn about specific features, and hear company news.
  • StreamYard: Thanks to Hopin’s high-production video streaming capabilities, the Coda team was able to deliver high-quality content to attendees. They also leveraged StreamYard’s video graphics functionality, displaying questions for speakers as on-screen banners and, in turn, prompting answers in real time.
  • Replay: The Coda team used Replay to auto-record and distribute Block Party sessions, giving them plenty of content to support ongoing marketing objectives and, in turn, extend reach

703

Attendees for the first keynote

223

Questions submitted

50+

Countries represented

"We used two stages and the expo hall [...] Our main stage, that's where we did our keynote and our rituals programming content. So we had four speakers deliver Ted Talk-like talks and then engage in audience Q&A. We loved the right rail chat and Q&A, and being able to moderate that."

Andrew Stinger
Product and Corporate Marketing Lead, Coda
HOW IT TURNED OUT

More Block Parties, more often

More than 2,000 people registered for Block Party, surpassing Coda’s initial target of 1,000 registrants. The document editing software was also able to expand its audience beyond the U.S., with 40% of attendees based in other countries.  Attendees spent an average of two and a half hours in the event, and they had high praise for Block Party, specifically noting the experience’s high production value.

The Coda team used feedback from post-event reports and chat transcripts to inform product development and future event strategy. The document editing business grew its social media following by 5%, doubled its year-over-year, single-day user base, and experienced one of its most active days of the year on Twitter. Block Party generated more than 100 assets, leaving the team with plenty of content to fuel future marketing and sales campaigns. 

After seeing Block Party’s success, the Coda team is now exploring how they can use Hopin for a series of smaller events intended to drive in-depth and ongoing engagement with their community.

"I think the success of this event made us realize that our working definition of events and the cadence at which we have them can totally change. We don't just have to have Block Party once a year, or every couple of years, when we have big product announcements. We're thinking about what smaller customer events would look like, and do they need to be virtual, in-person, or hybrid." –Andrew Stinger, Product and Corporate Marketing Lead, Coda

9.1

Average NPS

470+

Unique business domains in attendance

84%

Month-over-month increase in Twitter impressions

2.5 Hours

average attendance duration

100+

Marketing assets generated

"We were rolling in applause afterwards […] starting with our internal stakeholders and goals, taking motivated makers and engaging them and making them advocates. We saw amazing engagement during the event and amazing follow-on engagement after the event."

Andrew Stinger
Product and Corporate Marketing Lead, Coda

Lots of virtual audience buzz

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