Case Study

Democratic National Convention 2020


August 2020

You're part of the most creative, inclusive convention we've ever had. I doubt we'll ever go back to the same exact conventions we had in the past. It's a template for the future. - reported by Newsweek

Joe Biden

Joe Biden

President of the United States of America

Key Results

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The Challenge

How can Happily pull together the first virtual DNC in history?

In the most contested election of America’s history, a pandemic had swept the nation for months leaving the Democratic National Convention no choice but to call off the convention it had been planning for years and go virtual in the 11th hour.

The DNC reached out to Happily looking for help assembling the right team to broadcast the majority of its daytime programming - over 30 hours of caucus and council meetings - with just a week of runway.

We were given the responsibility to produce caucus and council meetings in TV broadcast style for the most prominent leaders of groups within the Women's Council, Asian American Pacific Islanders Caucus, Small Business Council, Veteran and Military Families Council, Minority Council, Muslim Council, LGBTQ Caucus, Native American Caucus, Jewish Council, and Poverty Council.

The stakes have never been higher, and no one has done this before.

Sarah Shewey

Sarah Shewey

Founder and CEO, Happily

The Solution

Team Happily has got this

With little time to prepare, it is imperative that we hire the right people for the job. To tackle the scope, we architected three small concurrent teams with TV broadcast experience and a leadership team of producers and technical directors to oversee and troubleshoot the production quality. Leveraging our in-house recruiting software and structured group interviews, we sped up a rockstar team from thousands of qualified candidates in just a few days.

Knowing the broadcasts will move very quickly with little more than a few minutes of time for any speaker, we set up a backstage environment in Zoom that set them all up for success:

  • reception area to check in speakers
  • private green rooms to prepare
  • confidence monitor to see the live feed

Working with Happily was enjoyable, inspirational, very collaborative and innovative, they are an expert team

Ron Pierce

Ron Pierce

Senior Advisor, DNC VMFC

The Results

It takes a Happily village to raise a flawless virtual summit

The first-ever, all-virtual Democratic National Convention trusted Happily to produce the majority of its daytime program with just one week of runway, and we delivered. Other production companies were given the exact same brief with fewer shows to produce, and yet still you can see the Happily difference comes down to the details.

  • One week of runway to produce 30+ hours of live broadcast
  • 500+ on-air presenters with no rehearsals including Dr. Jill Biden, Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Madeleine Albright, Maxine Waters, and Deb Haaland
  • 10 million minutes viewed with over 100,000 viewers
  • Parallel streams with ASL & live captions for full accessibility
  • We helped get Trump out of office!

When the pressure is really on, you truly get to know the measure of a person and a team. People fight, they breakdown and cry, they get weird. Not Team Happily. We keep it together as a team through thick and thin, even though none of us ever worked before as an entire unit! We made the impossible look impossibly easy and fun. Although we were absolutely exhausted at the end of a 180 hour sprint, we were all happily ready to do it again.

I’ve worked on a TON of big Hollywood productions for movies, TV, commercials and events, and I can’t think of a time outside of this that everyone that I interacted with was a cheerleader and inspired faith for and in everyone around them.

James Reifenberg

James Reifenberg

Streaming Engineer, Happily

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