Executing a corporate event that is creative and on-brand is a challenge. Luckily, more meeting planners are focusing on the end-to-end event planning experience. Before diving into the operational side of things, it’s important to establish your creative messaging and goals. Why are you having this event? What do you want attendees to walk away with? How are you going to convey that?
This year brings some new ideas and trends in meeting planning to help find your messaging organically. Bonus: it means your meeting will be as unique as your company. Interested? Read on.
Ever feel like you’re fresh out of ideas? Or rather, that it’s hard to come up with something relevant? Your employees are a great way to tap into insights about what is important in the business and its culture.
BizBash recommends using surveys before starting down the planning road. Surveys can be sent out via email well in advance for attendees to fill out. After pooling together responses, look for a theme. Is there a common concern about culture? Misunderstandings about sales objectives? Pain point in the market? Whatever it is, make that the focus for the next corporate event.
This makes messaging and event goals much more focused. Plus, if employees and other upper-management stakeholders are on-board with the objectives, higher engagement and attendance rates will naturally follow.
Once you have the corporate event objectives and messaging planned don’t stop there. Use objectives developed through internal brainstorm sessions to create collateral for pre and post-event. No matter if it’s for employees or outside attendees, people need to be onboard in advance. Taking a book out of online retail shoppers by building an .
Engage employees through social media, email reminders or even old-fashioned flyers to remind them about the event. Provide enticing messaging about what they’ll get from attending. Keep messaging and objectives consistent across all assets. Reading an email and then attending the event should feel like an extension of the same conversation.
“Before they arrive on-site, attendees should understand why they’re going to the meeting and what they’re going to walk away with. You need to be constantly in front of them with that branding and that message.”
Once you have clear messaging and goals for the event, use that to influence the design and creative execution. Smart Meetings urges planners to select a theme that supports conference goals. The concept of storytelling through design is another emerging trend for 2017.
Event planners are using the themes and goals of events to influence the design of the physical space. For example, if your annual sales meeting’s objective is to “raise the bar,” there could be activities and experiences that present challenges. Push employees out of their comfort zones. Then, think about what types of unusual (read: uncommon and budget-friendly) locations and activities would foster that behavior.