Case Study Overview

Sweeping changes in the way people consume information, engage with companies and communicate have changed the marketing, media and business landscapes. In 2010, SAP leaders wanted their live event SAPPHIRE to reflect these trends, and they needed to revitalize the brand to showcase the company's innovation and relevance—quickly. SAP knew an extraordinary event would go far in accomplishing this.

The annual SAPPHIRE customer and partner event played a key role in showcasing the SAP brand. And in 2010, it provided a launch pad to accelerate the company's efforts to become more relevant and essential, with the customer at the center of its strategy. SAPPHIRE transformed into SAPPHIRE NOW just 100 days after the hiring of two co-CEOs, creating an opportunity to articulate the company's vision and go-forward strategy.

In May 2010, SAPPHIRE NOW launched on two continents, connecting satellite locations in seven cities and comprising 16,000 onsite and 35,000 online delegates, two network-quality TV studios, 400 sessions broadcast online in HD and hundreds more presentations, discussions and micro forums onsite.

This case study shows how SAP executed the event and proffers ideas about how to emulate aspects of the SAPPHIRE NOW experience on any scale.

By The Numbers The SAP Experience
Attendance: 51,000+
Interactions: (demo leads, collateral requests, tele-interactions) 35,000+
Post-event requests for info: 1,604
Meetings with customers: 1,254
Exhibitors who will definitely come back: 75%
Brand impact: (increases in brand belief statements from pre- to post-event) 10% to 35%
Content: (all campuses achieve growth over prior years and 4.0 out of 5 or better on quality and relevance.)
- Very/extremely likely to recommend SAP to friend or colleague 79%
- Increase pre- to post-event 12%
Leads: (achieved increase over 2009) 76%
Business impact: (positive pipeline movement exceeded 2009 results by) 40%

Guiding Principles

Make it...
  • Easy
  • Informative
  • Engaging
  • Rewarding
  • Personal
  • Consistent
  • Authentic
Mary Boone

Mary Boone, president of Boone Associates, conducted the research for this case study. Boone's public speaking and consulting services focus on meeting and event strategy, high performance collaboration and leadership.

Jessie States

Jessie States, editor of the meeting industry for MPI, edits and writes white papers and case studies. She is also an award-winning writer for MPI magazine One+.

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