Bringing your event to life through experiences. How to ensure that your event is more than just a drinks and canapés affair. I find it very refreshing when someone actually does an event well, engages the audience, has a purpose for the event, thinks about the attendees and creates relevant experiences. It’s pretty simple stuff really, especially when you are attending an event where you don’t know many people. It is experiences that often play a key role in an event’s success or failure as they create the atmosphere that gets the party going, they bring relevance to the event, they encourage engagement and they help promote your brand and the occasion.
The experiences are the things that make memories, good or not so good. So what is an experience? If you look at the word creatively, and all good event organisers should be creative, an experience can be anything from a competition, a game, an interactive message board, rubbing shoulders with a brand ambassador, or even hitting the dance floor to tracks by a renowned celebrity DJ. While experiences can be varied and have different meanings to different people, I am not talking about the fluff that is just there to fill a room.
Experiences must be relevant to your brand and your purpose for holding the event. Just as great experiences can enhance your event, yawn-worthy ones can un-do all the good the Moët and caviar did at the start of the night. Clients regularly brief me on events requiring the creation of a fun, interactive atmosphere and to do this we often use experiences. An example that comes to mind was for the launch of a new gaming app. For this event we had the game fed through onto large flat screens for people to play and their gaming prowess was broadcast for all to see. This proved particularly popular among the men in the room.
For the next level of engagement, we had professional game players giving tips and showing off their tricks to the assembled crowd. The experiences, along with quality food and drinks, meant that we had people lining up all night, staying longer than previous years and walking away telling us what fun they had, while admitting to already being slightly addicted to the game. As well as this, over 90% of our guests had actually interacted with the game and were able to experience much more than just a launch presentation and then take away a goody bag with a brochure.
It’s simple stuff but it works. Drinks and canapés on their own are done to death, so why not step it up a bit.
It’s simple stuff but it works. Drinks and canapés on their own are done to death, so why not step it up a bit. If you are organising an event, be sure to consider the role of experiences and how you can use them to make sure your event is not remembered for being boring or uninspiring. If you do that, people might be disposed to stay a bit longer, and will most likely walk away with more than just a belly full of your food and alcohol.