The Sedona Forum:

Leadership Institute Seizes Virtual Shift to Expand Global Impact


Opportunity in Adversity

Each spring, influential policy leaders from across the globe gather in Arizona for the Sedona Forum, an off-the-record discussion of some of the most pressing issues facing society today, such as human trafficking, the refugee crisis, misinformation, food security, and international relations.

The on-site, closed-door event, produced by Arizona State University and the McCain Institute for International Leadership, is well-known for its location and exclusivity. However, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, organizers decided to pursue a fully virtual format for 2021. Facing high stakes and a short time frame, the Sedona Forum team entrusted NJI with reimagining how to capture the event and share the resulting content—making it available to the public for the first time.

A moodboard created for the forum include mature black, gold, and orange themes


Lights, Camera, Zoom

To recreate the intimate, off-the-record conversations the Sedona Forum has long inspired, our production team used Zoom and Skype to capture a remote group of international speakers. Our production staff created virtual studios to accommodate quickly shifting VIP schedules and allow for simultaneous session recordings. Given the changing nature of world events, flexibility and timeliness were critical to ensure we captured these conversations as close to the event date as possible. Thorough preparation enabled us to keep the mission of the Forum front and center, while reacting quickly to accommodate necessary adjustments.

A snapshot of The Sedona Forum website imposed on a laptop screen

Real Impact

High Stake Conversations

125 VIP Speakers

75 Conversations

03 Days

A new look

Transforming the brand to elevate engagement

As the Sedona Forum began a new chapter of sharing content publicly, we developed a modified event website with a fresh take on the event brand, along with comprehensive organization that made it easy for attendees to explore the schedule and learn more about speakers and topics.

To capitalize on the excitement and exclusivity of a live event, session conversations were released daily and embedded in the website to encourage users to explore additional content and to revisit the website for future conversations.

A finalized template for The Sedona Forum website featuring colors, example website features, and text styles

The Results

In a condensed time frame, NJI design, development, strategy, and content teams collaborated to update the Sedona Forum branding, upgrade the website infrastructure, and efficiently produce recorded conversations with 125 VIP speakers.

The Sedona Forum website homepage featured on an iPhone screen laying on top of a red sand background
A collection of examples of webpages for The Sedona Forum

The virtual forum featured more than 22 hours of content across 75 conversations, spread across a three-day program, with the top session drawing more than 12,500 views. Complementing the event itself, the well-planned content publication led to social media engagement with speakers and audiences worldwide, establishing the Sedona Forum as a gathering place to discuss the most pressing issues of our day.

At a glance:

the web traffic in week 1
custom content modules
CMS Tutorials
Different 3D Rendered Mascots Tried
In-Office Photoshoot with Lara Croft Tombraider

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