While the old adage may go, “They won’t remember what you said, but they will remember how you made them feel,” we know there are event components that can help make your theme and message resonate emotionally and intellectually, creating meaningful and memorable experiences for the audience to carry with them for days, weeks, months and, in some cases, years after an event.
A stripped-down, all-business approach can (and does) work for some organizations and meetings. However, in our experience, the audience also wants to be engaged in ways that show they are appreciated and respected. They want to have an experience, not just be recipients of spoken messages. Here are a few tried-and-true techniques that contribute to creating lasting memories that strengthen the bonds to and within your business or organization.
BRANDING AND PHOTO STATIONS
Few things match the buzz associated with the arrival of your attendees on registration day. Well-executed event branding adds to the excitement and connects positive emotions to the brand. Branded photo stations provide fun, camaraderie and attendees may post images to social media or print them for display in the office or at home as a keepsake or source of continued inspiration. For longer events, photo stations can be altered or added throughout an event to support new messages, new products, incentive trips, programs or other newsworthy announcements. You can read more about event branding here.
CUSTOM STAGES, SET DESIGN AND 360-DEGREE DECOR
Walking into a well-designed immersive, theatrical experience with a visually impactful set as the centerpiece will leave a lasting impression on any audience. We like to blow an audience away with design and functionality that creatively and expertly supports a message and mission. Further, a well-designed and visually interesting set helps create the emotional tone for an event and can help engage and even entertain an audience, including during recognition. You can read more about the ways we can weave your brand and messaging into your set design here.
HOSTS, CO-HOSTS, GUESTS AND MASTERS OF CEREMONY
While using familiar faces from the company makes sense during presentations designed to move the organization forward and share company information, you can tap other resources to energize your crowd before the presentation starts. Professional actors or media personalities can fill these roles to have a memorable impact. A recurring character or characters to set up the day, intro and outro presenters to keep the energy up during the presentations or custom videos featuring talent to drive the content are effective ways to help keep an audience thinking more deeply about the message while also establishing a memorable icon associated with an event.
Music and entertainment add an additional layer of energy, emotion and fun. From headline talent to “living statues,” if there’s one thing attendees will remember, it’s entertainment. While big-name talent can be a draw and great for bragging rights, it can be a budget-buster accompanied by more complexity. In most cases, professional regional or local talent can have a similar impact (minus the bragging rights) for a lot less. Consider sprinkling entertainment components during your general sessions. We’ve had very positive experiences using bands or DJs a show elements to provide walk-in, walk-ons/offs, dance breaks and help drive recognition. This is a fairly vast topic with plenty of pitfalls to avoid. Our experience can help you be strategic with your entertainment selections and the role they play throughout your event.
It’s worth the effort to design and develop meeting and event experiences that have lasting impact on attendees. These experiences add value while keeping attendees engaged, excited and coming back for more. Contact us today!