Hosting a business event is a great way to help attract new customers, cement relationships with current customers and create a buzz around your business. To enable you to stand out in a competitive landscape, you need to give these business-focused events a new life and bring in some fresh ideas.
Every entrepreneur knows that there is often a long road between the idea of an event and the polished occasion. With that in mind, here are some ways that you can ensure you plan an engaging and successful business event, whatever industry you are in.
Use an imaginative location
You don’t have to stick to boring conference centres and rooms to hold a business event. An imaginative location may spark creativity amongst those that attend and it’s a great way to add additional excitement and buzz. If you choose an extravagant events venuethat has more to offer that just a plain room, it will help entertain those attending and avoid it feeling like just another meeting.
Create the full experience at the location, they key to making an event successful is how you make your guests feel when they get there. Look for venues that offer the little things like a friendly check-in experience and somewhere that offers food or an open bar.
Death by PowerPoint
How many times have you sat through a PowerPoint presentation and been so bored that your mind wanders off into tonight’s dinner, weekend plans and how uncomfortable your shirt is. Chances are, most of the other people in the room are doing the same and any information shared, regardless of its importance, isn’t being taken in.
Take a different approach with the structure of the event. Consider a fishbowl conversation where a group of people sit in a circle and talk about a certain topic while other people observe their conversation. If someone wants to share their opinions or insight, they swap with a person on the inner circle to do so. This technique allows a large group to take part in discussion without anyone feeling excluded.
Connect before the event
It is very daunting for a person to walk into a room full of people that they do not know, even for the most outgoing person. It will make them feel at ease to see at least one friendly face that they have spoken to before. In the run up to the event contact all those attending personally and confirm their attendance.
Even if you just meet with them online, it is still a connection. You could even set up a social media group with all those attending in and allow them to connect with each other. This will create a great buzz around the event.
After months of organising and planning, you may just want to kick off your shoes, relax and sleep for a few days when it is over. However, you shouldn’t take your foot off the pedal so soon. The day after an event is when the attendees are feeling the most pumped and inspired, this is the ideal time to engage with those people.
You could send out email questionnaires that allow them to express their experience and even upsell other events to them and get signatures for attendance as soon as possible while their mind is still excited from your first event.
Add a personal touch
The true way to get people talking about your event is to stand out. You can do this by adding in small details that give a personalised feel. Give out personalised bags to each attendee or add in something fun to the event like a photo booth.
The sharing of these touches and photos are great publicity for the event on social media and the attendees will feel appreciative. It’s a great talking point for them to share with friends and family about your event and it will ensure it sticks in their memory.