Preciate’s Virtual Socializing Platform Aims to Replicate In-Person Experience
While virtual events and video conferencing aren’t a perfect substitute for face-to-face, technology that replicates the real-life experience as much as possible could be a viable option, particularly for work teams and stakeholders wanting to stay connected during the COVID-19 era. Enter Preciate, a relationship-building platform for workplaces that launched Preciate Social, the first virtual socializing and teambuilding platform designed specifically for companies and teams, in late September.
Built to provide an immersive experience that replicates the atmosphere of real-life business socials and mixers, the online platform supports curated events of up to 50 people and allows multiple conversations to take place simultaneously while enabling the expression of social signals and cues. Patent-pending social presence technology allows users to feel like they’re navigating a 3-D space as they move away or toward people to start a conversation, with background noise of other people chatting and giving toasts.
“With the struggling economy and remote work becoming the new normal, companies and organizations need a tool that provides the value of in-person relationship-building remotely,” said Preciate CEO Ed Stevens, who founded the Dallas-based company in 2017. “We thought critically about how to marry what research tells us about building and maintaining relationships and how to replicate business socials virtually.”
He continued, “Whereas existing conferencing tools are built solely for meetings and are designed so only one person can be talking at a time, this one-too-many approach only works with small groups and for meetings, not for large groups and business socials. Preciate Social was built to fill this gap.”
Preciate Social enables companies and teams to:
- Create curated, fully customized, shared experiences: Event hosts can create customized background themes and music via three music options: free background music by genre, fully licensed premium music channels or live performances.
- Build stronger workplace relationships: By making it easier to connect with people regardless of physical distance, Preciate Social helps companies grow relationships at work and beyond.
- Recognize and praise employees: Preciate Social provides recognition tools that allow users to acknowledge and publicly celebrate employees for their great work.
- Foster deep connection and conversation: Intelligent room sizing ensures social events maintain a sense of closeness and energy without feeling crowded, while a Convos feature provides more than 20 icebreakers to help jumpstart conversations.
- Use built-in social signals and cues: Besides allowing for multiple simultaneous conversations, the platform enables participants to freely navigate around large groups of people and find who they wish to connect with. As participants move closer or further away from someone, the audio changes volume.
- Engage in private conversations: To ensure a safe and private place for businesses and teams to meet and mingle, Preciate Social doesn’t include any recording options nor does it share private information with other organizations.
So far, 1,700 companies have tried Preciate Social, including AAA, SSI, Brock Solutions, Dyno Noble and the National Science Foundation/Emory, the latter of which struggled to keep its scientific community engaged and connected after cancelling its spring and summer conferences this year.
“Even when we’ve tried virtual networking, it felt very unnatural,” said Rio Febrian, lead researcher at the National Science Foundation/Emory. “Preciate Social has been a great tool to bring my team and my network together again. The movement makes it feel like you’re in the same room [and] it’s refreshing to be able to easily break away and have different conversations throughout the event.”
Additionally, the Central Coast chapter of the MIT Enterprise Forum recently became a Preciate Social user. In October, the group used Preciate Social to host after-event networking following presentations, speakers and panels at its 100-person Start ups: Funding to Flourish virtual event. The platform was a huge success, with 35 percent of presentation attendees attending their very first network social and more expected at future events.
According to Kevin Parent, MIT Enterprise Forum of the Central Coast board member, the organization was excited to once again offer its networking opportunities, a key component of its in-person events that had been missing from its virtual forums this year until it adopted Preciate Social.
“Zoom just doesn’t cut it for networking, so we were thrilled to hear about Preciate Social,” Parent explained. “Everyone was thrilled to find that they were easily able to mingle, network and work the room just like a normal event, but from the safety and comfort of their own homes across the country. After all of the great feedback from attendees last month, we’re excited to use Preciate Social again for our November and December events.”
Preciate Social’s Basic account is free for 40 minutes with up to 20 participants, while its Premium account allows for unlimited use for up to 50 participants. To learn more, go here.