FOX Broadcasting Company is part of 21st Century FOX and broadcasts primetime programming, late-night entertainment programming, major sporting events, and weekend news shows.
FOX Broadcasting coordinated a VIP event at a large sporting event and needed to print nearly 1,000 VIP badges before the event. The badges helped communicate multiple aspects on-site including attendee identification, check-in times, gift bag distribution and access levels. All of this information is fed into a tracking system to give event organizers real-time operational visibility and insight for future planning.
Preparing for an event with upwards of 1,000 attendees can be daunting, as it takes an extensive amount of planning, coordination and preparation. In addition to showcasing the right artwork and advertiser logos, the VIP badges are critical to event organizers to ensure the right people are at the event, the attendees have correct access to levels at the event and ultimately, the badges serve as a souvenir after the event. FOX had used a fulfillment house for badge printing in the past. This meant they created an attendee list and sent it to the fulfillment house weeks before the event. That’s where the badges were printed and laminated, and then shipped to FOX at the event site.
Unfortunately, the badges could not be changed on-site to accommodate any last-minute changes. To remedy this, the team brought a basic label and card printer on-site to print any new or updated badges. However, the quality suffered compared to the badges printed before the event. This was a problem because names and advertisers changed, errors were found, and new attendees were added. Pre-ordered batches also led to overages and unused badges went to waste.
This time, the FOX Broadcasting leadership team decided to optimize its process by printing the VIP badges on-site and create a simpler, more efficient and effective process for badge distribution. FOX worked with Zebra Technologies to find the right printer to meet the specific needs for this event. Zebra recommended the ZC10L large-format card printer. The printer was in a pre-production phase at the time and FOX agreed to test it at the event before the public launch.
Designed specifically for the hospitality market and events like FOX’s VIP gathering, the ZC10L produces color cards with edge-to-edge printing in one simple process. Event organizers can customize cards on the spot for each guest, finalize card designs up to the start of the event, print the entire side of a card in one pass and add guest instructions or fine print on the back of the cards. Zebra’s ZC10L also prints photo quality graphics and images that include high-quality designs, rich colors, text and barcodes. This worked well because FOX didn’t want to sacrifice quality by printing on-site since the VIP badges are kept as a souvenir for many attendees.
FOX and Zebra understood there could be challenges using pre-production prototype printers at a big event. The Zebra ZC10L didn’t perform flawlessly, but Zebra was on-site to troubleshoot and guide the event team through the issues. FOX and Zebra documented the challenges and took those learnings back to the product design team to ensure they are incorporated before the public launch.
Heading into the week, FOX needed to print about 1,000 badges for the event. Event organizers could modify the attendee list right up to registration day, which gave them flexibility on-site. FOX printed 855 badges before registration day based on the confirmed attendee list. Thursday and Friday were two days when the printer would really be tested. Those days included walk-ins and late registrants for the event. FOX successfully printed an additional 80 badges Thursday, 50 badges Friday and about 10-15 on Saturday and Sunday bringing the total to approximately 1,000 badges.
“In the past, many of the badges were tossed because of name switches, new attendees or no-shows,” FOX Broadcasting’s Event Director Veronica Kelley said. “Having the Zebra ZC10L on-site gave us flexibility to print crisp, professional badges as changes happened.” This resulted in an efficient registration table leading into the VIP event. The Zebra ZC10L produced high-quality VIP badges in a high-pressure situation for FOX Broadcasting. It improved and optimized the VIP badge printing process, improving the overall guest experience.