International investigator meetings are essential for pharmaceutical companies seeking FDA approval for new drugs. However, planning and executing these events while maintaining consistency across borders poses a laundry list of challenges.

I’ve seen firsthand the importance of delivering high-quality, consistent experiences for our clients, regardless of the event’s location. In this post, I’ll explain how we execute flawless international investigator meetings — and why innoVia Productions is your pharmaceutical company’s “easy button.”

The Importance of Consistency

Consistency is key for investigator meetings. The data collected from attendees, whether doctors, practitioners, or other healthcare professionals, must be reliable and comparable across all events. This means the way we measure and report data should be consistent, and the quality of the meetings should be the same, whether you’re in Austin or Australia.

However, achieving consistency can be challenging when planning international meetings. Each location presents unique obstacles, from varying venue standards to cultural differences in labor practices.

That’s why it’s essential to partner with a vendor that creates consistent experiences across borders.

Our Glocal Approach

At innoVia Productions, we use a “glocal” approach — achieving a global reach using local resources.

By leveraging local resources internationally, we gain valuable insights into the local culture, venue, and city. Meanwhile, our global expertise ensures that all events are of the highest quality, no matter where they occur. This way, our clients enjoy the best of both worlds: high-quality events and rich local culture.

Implementing a glocal approach isn’t easy, but it’s a challenge we’ve mastered. Our clients rest assured that no matter where their event takes place, they’ll receive the same high-quality service and consistent results.

Infographic: Success Without Borders: A Guide to Delivering Consistent International Investigator Meetings

How We Overcome the Unique Challenges of International Investigator Meetings

So, what does our glocal approach look like in practice? Here’s how we overcome the unique challenges of international investigator meetings:

Overcoming Language and Cultural Barriers

Most of our clients are based in the US and UK and primarily speak English, but international investigator meetings often require data from doctors who speak different languages.

To address this issue, we implement several solutions:

  1. Live In-Room Interpretation: We provide simultaneous interpretation services that translate not just the words but also their meaning. This ensures that all attendees, regardless of their native language, fully understand and participate in the meeting.
  2. Bilingual Staff: Our team members are often bilingual, ensuring smooth communication between clients and local crews. Depending on the event’s complexity, we may use local, regional, or US-based staff to create the best possible experience (more information below).For example, we recently executed events in Sydney, Seoul, and Taipei. For the events in Sydney and Seoul, we used regional and local resources to manage the events effectively. However, for the more complicated show in Taipei, we flew in a team member from the United States who was familiar with the client’s needs and expectations.
  3. Cultural Awareness: We understand and respect the stylistic preferences unique to each region, such as the preference for printed scenic backgrounds over pipe and drape in Europe. By adapting to the local culture while maintaining our high standards, we create events that are both consistently excellent and culturally relevant. After all, no one flies to Taipei to eat a cheeseburger!

There’s no one-size-fits-all solution. Every event has different needs, and we have the resources to meet them all.

Ensuring Confidentiality and Security

Investigator meetings often involve highly sensitive and valuable information that can’t be compromised. As an event planning company, we understand the enormous risk of handling this data, especially when working with multiple vendors across different countries.

To mitigate this risk, we’ve established strict rules of engagement we adhere to universally. We thoroughly vet our vendors and manage them before, during, and between events to ensure they comply with our confidentiality standards. Unless the client specifies otherwise, this includes immediately wiping clean all computers and thumb drives after the event.

Our clients trust that their confidential information is safe with us, no matter where their event occurs. We work closely with their legal departments to understand and comply with their specific requirements, ensuring a seamless and secure experience from start to finish.

Maintaining Labor Quality

It isn’t practical to fly in every team member for every event. Instead, we rely on local and regional partners to assist in execution. These partners are skilled, capable, trustworthy, and dependable.

We never roll the dice when it comes to event staff. We use vetted local experts and companies to ensure each event is successful.

Navigating Shipping and Customs

Shipping equipment and materials across borders can get tricky. There are countless horror stories of gear not showing up on time, arriving damaged, or being held for ransom.

To avoid these issues, we rely on our glocal approach.

While most AV equipment is readily available in most regions and unnecessary to ship, other items, like iPads or scenic tiles, may require special consideration. In these cases, we work with local partners to source or print materials, ensuring that everything is ready when our crew arrives on-site.

For example, scenic tiles are a relatively recent addition to investigator meetings. These white tiles, arranged in different shapes, nicely absorb light and spruce up a dull stage. However, shipping these tiles can be problematic, as they may be damaged or held up in customs.

To avoid these issues, we often print them locally on foam core or as pop-up displays, complete with the company’s logo and space for a projector to shine. This eliminates shipping concerns and allows for a more customized, professional look.

An event’s look and feel should reflect its stakeholders’ professionalism. That’s why we go the extra mile to create stage sets that are as impressive as the doctors and practitioners presenting on them.

Attendees appreciate and remember a well-designed stage. They enjoy taking pictures in front of a professional backdrop and are often disappointed if the next event they attend doesn’t meet the same standards. By consistently delivering high-quality, visually appealing stage sets sourced locally, our clients make a lasting impression on their attendees.


Being the Easy Button

Here at innoVia, we’re our clients’ “easy button” for international investigator meetings. They shouldn’t worry about whether their equipment will arrive on time or whether the crew will be capable and discreet. By leveraging our expertise, global network, and commitment to consistency, we ensure that each investigator meeting goes off without a hitch.

We’ve worked with the same vendors for years, continually improving our processes and best practices. As new technologies emerge and new services are needed, we adapt and grow to meet our clients’ developing requirements. This ongoing partnership allows us to execute events more efficiently and cost-effectively while maintaining the highest quality and consistency.

If you’re looking for a partner to help you execute seamless, consistent investigator meetings worldwide, look no further than innoVia Productions. Our glocal approach, extensive experience, and dedication to your success will make us your easy button for international events. Reach out to us today.