Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

April 26 2016

A few moments with Avista's own Roberta Boucher and Doug Watson

Patti Spaniak

NorCal PCMA had a chance to catch-up with Doug Watson and Roberta Boucher  of Avista Audio Visual Rentals & Event Production (avistarentals.com & avista-events.com).



When asked what makes Avista the most talked about event production company in the Bay, President and Founder Doug Watson shared We strive to exceed our customer’s expectations and achieve perfection every time - whether it’s an intimate sales meeting or large-scale general session spotlighting the CEO – the Avista team is committed to making every corporate conference, gala, or meeting outstanding and have a high impact. Avista is the official audio visual and production sponsor for both PCMA and MPI Northern California chapters.


Added fellow PCMA chapter member and Executive Producer Roberta Boucher, We’re a super high-touch organization. We’re passionate about sharing the latest trends and technologies that keep our client’s shows current and fresh. But, equipment is equipment, at Avista it’s about our people and their dedication to the process and outcome. We work very hard to exceed expectations, build trust, and establish long relationships with our clients. 


Roberta’s favorite part of the process is inspiring clients to be innovative during the design and strategy phase, and executing creative and memorable ways of delivering messages and engaging attendees. The Avista event production motto? “Prepare, practice and prepare some more!”  Our goal is to create long-term strategic partnerships with our clients to make sure their event objectives are met, messages are heard, and calls to action understood - through flawless production delivery and audio visual expertise – and year-over-year.” she shared. 


Avista turned 10 this year, and its rapid ascent in the market indicates its strategy is working. Doug Watson shared We’ve gone from one location to four – San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles and Palm Springs -- and now have 35 highly trained, dedicated professionals who understand that each and every meeting or event we do is vitality important to our clients – neither they nor us get second chances, and reputation is everything!



Avista professionals work closely with planners, looking for creative, innovative ways to deliver multi-media content in the highest tech way while staying cost-conscience . Our inventory includes state-of-the-art AV technologies and audience engagement tools. Doug commented, Our clients know we go above and beyond the call of duty - and we work hard to put the planner at ease, stay within their target budget, and hit the ball out of the park so they will entrust us with their next event!


Planners will appreciate that Avista’s production pricing is transparent, and listed on their rental website with no hidden fees. An Avista quote will spec the equipment (make and model). Labor is a line item with all the specifics of crew itemized: from install/dismantle labor to Executive Producer; they want to be sure you can compare apples to apples with competing quotes. Audio Visual is a high value item in the overall budget, and everything associated with it can be overwhelming, and sometimes confusing. We want our customers to know what they’re paying for and how it all works to their benefit, Roberta shared.


Technologies and Trends


The “talking head” style of content is a thing of the past. Today’s keynote speakers presentations are shorter, quicker and fast-paced to keep the attention of today’s multi-tasking audiences. Roberta says, In todays world of constant connectivity, asking attendees to “turn-off” their electronic devices is totally unrealistic.  So, let’s use that connection to our advantage! Today’s technologies allow attendees to use their smart devices to communicate directly with the presenter, vote for topics they wish to be covered, or actually have the content being presented delivered right to them in real-time. Roberta shared, our clients are always looking for ways to keep audience engagement up – we can offer many creative & unique ways to deliver your content and work with many partner companies to deliver the latest technologies to involve the audience. It’s critical to keep the audience as engaged as possible .


In technology trends, blended screen displays are seeing a rise in popularity since pricing is coming down a bit.  And hybrid meetings (combination of face-to-face and virtual audiences via live streaming webcast of the session) are highly-popular to expand audience reach.   We’ve made a sizable capital investment in state-of-the-art webcasting solutions over the past year, and are delivering a rapidly increasing number of webcast events to clients, particularly in the technology and pharmaceutical industries, Doug shared.


Avista is celebrating its 10th year supporting corporate, non-profit, government and education clients throughout California and is now producing successful events across the United States. They look forward to supporting your event soon!

1 Comment

  1. 1 Dana 29 Apr
    Thank you Avista for being such a great partner to the Northern California Chapter of PCMA!

Please log in to post comments.