Attention spans are getting shorter every day, making hosting a memorable event more challenging than ever.
But what if we approached events more like producers when crafting catchy pop songs?
Just as great pop tracks continuously introduce subtle yet exciting elements, offering listeners a strangely familiar (yet completely new) thread, event planners must adopt a similar approach.
Here are strategic ways to increase your event engagement before, during, and after the event.
Boost Pre-Event Engagement
Communication with attendees must feel seamless from start to finish. Here are a few strategies to get you started:
Enhance Event Communication Channels: Maintain an active presence on social media platforms, responding to all inquiries and engaging with comments.
Use Email Strategically: While you want to avoid bombarding prospective attendees with messages, you must maintain a predictable cadence of helpful information. This includes critical event reminders, updates on speakers or activities, previews of what’s to come, and logistical information.
Countdown Communication: Build anticipation and a fear of missing out as the registration deadline approaches. Use social media to display a non-invasive timer or launch an email campaign highlighting what attendees will gain from participating in the event.
Segment Your Messaging: Too many event hosts take a “shotgun” approach to messaging, blasting the same, one-size-fits-all communications to every prospect. This rarely piques engagement. Segment your email list and social media promotions based on attendee preferences, previous interactions, or registration status.
Maintaining Engagement During the Event
To boost engagement during the event, adopt the following strategies:
Facilitate Networking Zones: Design seating arrangements and spaces encouraging communication and networking. Create designated areas where people can gather and interact.
Live Q&A Sessions: During presentations or panel discussions, integrate live Q&A sessions. Allow attendees to submit questions in real-time, and have speakers or moderators address them.
Real-time Feedback Surveys: Use technology to gather feedback from attendees through live polls and surveys. Ask for opinions on discussions, sessions, or event logistics. This not only engages attendees but also helps you make real-time improvements.
Mobile Event Apps: Event apps like Whova and Attendify allow you to introduce interactive activities like live polling, session feedback, and networking tools. Attendees can utilize the app to connect with peers, access event materials, and actively engage throughout the event.
Improving Post-Event Engagement
To maintain engagement and capitalize on the momentum generated during the event, adopt these strategies:
Send Personalized Thank-You Emails: Send one to each attendee, expressing your gratitude for their participation. Mention specific details like their name, the sessions they attended, or any contributions they made during the event.
Follow-up Surveys and Feedback: Send post-event surveys to attendees to gather feedback on their experience. Use this feedback to evaluate what worked well and identify areas for improvement.
Content Sharing and Recap: Share event highlights, session recordings, or takeaways with attendees through email or your event website. This allows attendees to revisit valuable content and reinforces their connection with your event.
Reward Loyalty and Build Anticipation: Maintain momentum by announcing next year’s event early. Share key details and a sneak peek of what’s to come. Next, show your appreciation to previous attendees by extending exclusive discounts and early bird rates for the next event, ensuring they can secure their spots at a reduced rate.
Partner with an Experienced Event Planner
Feeling wary about implementing some of these strategies? It might be time to hire an experienced event planner. They’ll streamline the entire process from start to finish. With their established vendor and venue connections and their strategic use of technology, they can assist you in managing the event before, during, and long after it’s over.
CSP Worldwide: Your Event Solution
CSP Worldwide is a world-class team of the most creative, experienced, and passionate professionals with a proven track record. We partner with you to create a memorable event using the industry’s latest event technology and trends.
Contact us today, and let us help you make your next corporate event a success.