Whatever your event, you want your guests to be actively engaged in it. Engagement can take many forms and is dependent on what your event is and what you as the host hope to achieve.
What do you want from your guests?
When looking at how to get your guests actively involved, your first task is to ask what do you want from them. Some of the Cooks & Partners clients are leading fashion brands hosting sample sales. Here our clients want their guests to purchase goods on show. User experience and letting your guests touch, feel and try your products is a great way to encourage your guests to ultimately buy. This might be via a catwalk showcasing outfits or free samples of a product. This will also stimulate conversation and valuable customer feedback. Two popular event venues for sample sales are the Noho Showrooms and Noho Studios.
Move away from the hard sell
Sometimes its important to draw corporate events away from the purchase cycle. Guests like downtime, so provide a different activity for them e.g. if you have a bar offer free cocktail making sessions. This distracts away from the hard sell and takes away any felt pressure that a guest might feel to purchase. It will also surprise many guests who are only expecting the sales environment.
Another way is to split your event into segments. The first half could be geared towards selling/your conference etc and the second part can be aimed at downtime. This might take the form of some live entertainment (singer/musician/aerial silks). This will allow your guests to relax and talk about the event within a different setting and shifted focus. It might also be the persuasion they needed to attend your event. Guests might just come to your event for this later segment but they have still engaged with your brand and otherwise might not.
Events labelled ‘networking’ are quite often a failure despite those attending hoping to form new relationships. Why is this? Casual inetractions are relatively meangingless and not very memorable. Getting your guests to connect on a deeper level can be achieved by upping the stakes. This might be via group activity where guests have to work together for a shared outcome. Escape games, scavenger hunts and quizzes are great ways to bring guests together and get them to engage with one another.
Yes, the power of social media can’t be overlooked and most can't resist an unusual selfie opportunity. Think outside the box here but try and make it relevant to your product/event but in a fun way. Invite guests to post their selfie online using a designated hashtag to be in with the chance of winning a prize. This will create engagement not only at your event but thereafter with guests looking out for the winning photo.
Integrating live-tweeting to your event by priming guests before attending is another good way of communicating with your guests and will help with your brand/hashtag impression numbers. And although impressions aren’t the most impressive metric, they are good for brand awareness and marketing further down the line.
Keeping your guests happy during an event is key and having superb food and drink supplied by us in an easy win. A happy client is more likely to engage positively and ultimately respond in the way you as the host is hoping for. So if you are planning an event and want advice on venue space in London or catering options, talk to us on 020 7731 5282 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org