Fire him.

That marketing guy you are paying tons of money to come up with the right strategy for your business, without ever even thinking of holding an event to promote your products or services. Fire him NOW.

Or at least, give him some stats to make him understand.

Did you know that a whooping 74% of consumers have a better opinion of a brand after visiting an in-person event?

Well, you might say, creating a good opinion around ones product makes sense, however such events can quickly accumulate high costs, so is it really worth it?

Let’s take a look at another number to answer that question:

According to the same Event Track 2018 report, 98% of people feel more inclined to PURCHASE after attending an activation.

That’s ninety-eight percent.

There is a keyword in this data that we shouldn’t miss though: activation.

It is not enough to plan a nice event, promote it, and inform people about your product. You need to engage them, activate them, and interact with them.

And have them do the same with each other.

What does that mean to you?

Over the last few years working hands-on with event organizers, brand owners, venue directors, and more, at Impressius we have observed what are some of the best practices when it comes to events.

Read this article to the end and find out how to do both – bring more engagement to your business event as well as one of the best new ways to help your attendees share their experience with other attendees as well as those not present.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at the 23 tips to help you achieve more engagement at your business events.

Here is an overview for quick reference:

1. Get – Set – Blog Post
2. Create and promote unique #Hashtags
3. Optimize the design of the venue
4. Know your attendees
5. Build an online community
6. Leverage event technology
7. Add fun factors
8. Hold on to those influencers
9. Plan for fascinating sessions and inspiring speakers
10. Activity name badges
11. Live polls
12. Provide a game or competition
13. Use a mobile app
14. Micro blogging
15. Give special perks
16. Have a great booth design
17. Throw an after party
18. Host a question & answer round
19. Create breakout sessions for first timers
20. A solution wall
21. Send thank you emails

1. Get – Set – Blog Post

The plan is easy: people love engaging events, they have a better opinion of your brand after it and are more willing to spend money on your product or service.

Which means: the bigger the audience, the more cash in your pockets, potentially.

Begin with attracting those moths towards your fire. Except, of course you should love your customers so don’t call them moths. And don’t burn them either. Just attract them.

Promote an upcoming event via blogging about the highlights of your event.

Share your blog posts on multiple social media platforms.

Each social media platform is unique and has different advantages. Customize your social sharing respectively to engage most of the audience.

Eventually it also results in increased brand value and enhanced business pages.

2. Create and promote unique #Hashtags

It’s a great pre – event idea to create unique hashtags exclusively for your business event.

Including hashtags in your content on social media has a host of benefits and pulls in more clients. Besides that, hashtags also help promote products and services.

You can make effective use of hashtags to engage your audience before and after the business event.

Note! Make sure hashtags are short and have natural keywords. Speaking of hashtags – you will LOVE tip #6 – trust me.

#swatchXme instagram print

#swatchXme, driving engagement online and offline, powered by Impressius.

3. Optimize the design of the venue

Firstly, make sure your attendees don’t have to wander searching for the venue on the map.

By strategically organizing the venue, you can ensure that your attendees are engaging and interacting.

Transform coffee, snacks, and water stationary into networking hubs.

Bring on everything into the room that your attendees might get attracted towards the most.

If a write up inside a bottle can get people talking about it, why not strategize something similar?

Coca-Cola corporate event
Coca-Cola: mastering the art of venue design

4. Know your attendees

Before you begin with the event, it’s crucial to understand your audience.

By knowing all about who the attendees are, where they hail from, what company they work in, and similar information on your attendees, you can set it up and execute it better, which ultimately increases engagement of the attendees.

Plan accordingly to make your event more relevant, fun and worthwhile.

5. Build an online community

Almost 50% of the companies today believe that social media increases engagement among the attendees even before an event.

Your attendees get to connect on LinkedIn, send messages to each other, schedule time with speakers, and even plan to get a snack together!

6. Leverage event technology

Okay we LOVE this one, of course.

And we’re sure you will, too.

It is always great to have pictures of your memories in your hands.

If you have organized events, you know how hard it is to distribute the pictures to your guests.

IMPRESSIUS, is a system that enables you to distribute the pictures of your events to all the attendees at a reasonable cost.

It’s a hassle free system and it starts when our friendly staff installs the social media printers at your venue.

The magic, however, happens AT the event: the guests can snap pictures of themselves anywhere in the venue using their own smartphones. And one of our ways of printing is: you create your own hashtags and your attendees post their pictures on social media using those hashtags.

The user data of your guests is collected in the system (and delivered to you for further use) while the pictures are recognized and immediately printed.

Then your guests just have to pick them straight out of the printer and they can keep them, remember the fun they had at your event, remember the new people they have met, and most importantly… remember YOUR BRAND.

impressius print out
Cinematic letter display

7. Add fun factors

Making the event really fun plays a major role in increasing audience participation.

Attendees mostly look forward to learn and discover market trends and spend a pleasant time.

By adding fun factors to the sessions, you can be sure that your attendees will enjoy the most during your event.

You don’t have to reinvent the wheel for this.

There are hundreds of ideas that you can find online by doing a quick search.

Even if you have to hire a freelancer to come up with a list of ideas that could work for your particular event, it will pay off later, so do it.

Mascot driving engagement at conference

Mascots + Impressius: Always a fun combo

8. Hold on to those influencers

It is important to communicate with influential people in particular.

Basically, influencers have a broader and more powerful social networking domain.

Do not just interact with your attendees, but by doing so with the influencer: you can spark a broader conversation that can include hundreds of other attendees.

How do you get hold of the influencers though?

There are companies that have taken care of that for you and offer lists with all the influencers that would be relevant to your industry, including all their contact data. Check Mavenful.com, which includes a data reporting system so you can track your influencers performance.

Elon Musk speaking on stage

Credit: www.ccn.com

9. Plan for fascinating sessions and inspiring speakers

What’s good about the event without some excellent speakers and first class sessions?

After all, people attend the event to learn, communicate, share experiences, advice or information.

They do not want to go to an event that has nothing to offer them.

Therefore, make sure that there are ready-made, compelling sessions and known speakers.

The smartest way to do that would be to ask your email-list about their single biggest challenge that they are facing at the moment.

Then book a world-class speaker who will offer the solution to 2-3 of the most frequently mentioned problems at your event. Awesome!

Nike LinkedIn post

Credit: https://www.linkedin.com/company/nike/

10. Activity name badges

Credentials are required for most events, and although the standard name and company encourages attendees to connect, why not add a more attractive feature?

Make an extra effort using name badges as an impromptu activity: a surprise session depending on the color of the card or a hidden meeting place on the back of the event card or even a discount for a coffee with the corresponding card.

The possibilities are endless!

11. Live polls!

During a session or presentation, let the speakers incorporate a direct survey.

It not only makes the session more interactive, it also allows marketing professionals to collect data, which can then be used for future events to make it more relevant and useful to attendees.

And if one thing is for sure: people LOVE taking SURVEYS that are relevant to them.

Audience in conference

Credit: https://blog.sli.do/30-icebreaker-questions-audience-live-polling/

12. Provide a game or competition

Give away rewards and awards!

Arrange for games because they often turn up the atmosphere.

You should always inform your followers about the giveaway contest through social posts, flyers, informal methods, and so on.

This is a fun way to increase engagement at your business event.

Using VR at corporate event

Credits : https://www.logisticsinside.eu/category/events/

13. Use a mobile app or microsite

Using the event app is another great way to increase audience engagement.

Now, I know this is not something new and innovative. Portable applications for events have been around for a while, but they are very effective.

Through them, you can provide attendees with easy and intuitive access to personal agendas and the ability to customize your event experience.

14. Micro blogging

Micro blogging is what seems like traditional blogs where content segments tend to be long and dense, but you need to use different social media platforms, such as Twitter, Facebook and Snapchat, and provide short content with real-time images.

This allows those interested in the event to be present and ready by constantly reminding them of it, while already starting to engage them through questions, interesting statements, provocations that will start a discussion on Twitter, with people hash-tagging and reposting your tweet, and so on.

15. Give special perks

This may mean giving them a discount if they register for your product during the event, special or personal spoils, VIP status at after parties or lunch, or even a free consultation on your product.

These benefit the attendance and force them to learn more about your products, and get even more excited about the event.

16. Exhibitors: Have a quirky booth design!

Do not just distribute brochures with information; arrange a setting that can actually attract your attendees.

Make sure that if you are renting out booths to certain businesses at your event, they qualify in terms of certain criteria.

Their booths should offer competitions, and incentives that really interest people that they are targeting.

It is basically what we call lead magnets in digital marketing. An incentive that makes people give something – in this case, their time, attention, and possibly contact data – in return for what you have to offer them (for free).

In case you successfully lay down this task, it is more likely to increase engagement of the attendees at your business event.

By offering these attractive booths, you can get a decent immediate return on the money spent on the event as well as create a better experience for your attendees.

17. Throw an after party

Organize a party at the end of the day, after your business event.

Plan a lunch and invite special attendees.

It is an excellent way to have attendees meet each other and have a conversation while promoting your brand.

After party

Credit: https://www.gq-magazin.de/leben-als-mann/karriere/after-workparty-dresscode

18. Host a questions & answers round

Set a place for guests to come and answer their questions directly from you or through your team.

You will increase engagement, provide more value, and cement your business relationship with the attendees.

Q&A session

Credit: www.freepik.com

19. Create breakout sessions for first timers

You don’t want anyone to feel left out!

This opportunity will encourage and guide new attendees to get the most value possible from their planned event.

It provides them opportunities to meet speakers, ask questions to other attendees and groups of activities in this detailed pre-event session.

20. A solution wall

Create a notepad on a well-designed wall to pass it forward.

Attendees can quickly write down their contact information to learn about their professional roles and fix them on that specific wall.

Peer assistants can take notes when they see fit and communicate on how to help them achieve professional success.

21. Send overhauled thank you emails

Collecting emails during the event is easy and fun for attendees with Impressius.

By continuing to chat after an event, you increase the engagement by showing that your company wants to help them solve their problems.

Instead of a simple thank you email, take the opportunity to Include the branded Impressius pics they took at your event for adding a “wowing” personal touch, along with a survey to establish a 2-way communication channel with your attendees and collect valuable opinions.

We hope that these 21 tips will help you customize your events and provide the best experience and platforms for communication that will accelerate your business agenda.

If you should have any questions or comments, just send us a quick message and we will get back to you asap.