The main objective when you're hosting any kind of conference is to get people to attend, and then for them to leave having heard and learned about what it is you wanted to tell them. Seems simple enough, but these are not easy objectives. Yet with a bit of imagination -- and not necessarily huge amounts of money -- you can wow your audiences every time.
Here are some ways to do just that:
Use the latest technology
Nothing wows people more than the latest tech being used effectively. While it can seem that anything too up-to-date would come with a hefty price tag, in fact many of the technologies that you might not yet be using are actually becoming more commonplace than you might expect. Technology such as virtual reality headsets, social media interactivity, and live streaming are all becoming more common and can be run for very little cost. What all these things give you is the ability for your delegates to be more involved with your event and feel more of a part of it. If you have a little more to spend, you could also consider things such as an app specifically for your event.
Give away some goodies
Harkening back to children's parties when we all loved leaving with a party bag -- adults no different, and love to have something to take away with them. Be creative with this and the goodie bag could come out of your marketing spend. Shopper bags are increasing popular and can have your brand or business logo on the outside. This means that whenever one of your delegates uses the bag, they are a walking advertisement for you. Alternatively, consider something useful like a smartphone case or a USB stick, which people are likely to use again and again. This will then be a continual reminder of your event and encourage them to sign up again next year.
Keep the agenda energetic and focused
People sign up to attend events in the hope that they will enhance their learning and understanding of a topic. As such, your agenda should be focused upon whatever that topic is, but should address it in a variety of ways by a range of people. Having great speakers is a must, as hearing from someone passionate and knowledgeable about what they are talking about is the sort of thing that people remember for a long time. Again, think how you can use technology to keep presentations interesting and interactive. Also, throughout the day, don't forget about regular breaks -- keeping guests well-fed and well-hydrated is essential to keeping concentration levels high.
Choose a great venue
One of the best things about going to a conference is that it's a day out of the office, so the last thing people want to do is then go to an office building. Holding your conference somewhere that's eye-catching, visually stunning and has a wealth of history means that not only are your guests excited for your event, they are keen to come along just to see where it is being held. London has a huge amount of great conference space, including our space, The Brewery in the city of London. Based on the site of the former Whitbread brewery, the venue has a vast history and has been visited by royalty through the years, so there's a great amount to learn while you are here.
Be in a location that people want to visit
If you're welcoming international delegates, then you want to locate your event somewhere they want to go. With tourists flocking to London every year, we think there's no better place to hold a great conference. There's easy-to-understand and reliable transport links, accommodation to suit any budget, and must-see tourist attractions like Buckingham Palace and Tower Bridge. Being somewhere people really want to go gives your venue yet another tick on the wow factor list.
Simon Lockwood is creative director at The Brewery, a unique venue located in the heart of the city of London. With extensive experience in events, conferences, exhibitions and ceremonies it is the ideal venue for events in the U.K. Find out more today at www.thebrewery.co.uk. If you're looking to host a conference, exhibition or event, talk to The Brewery, based in the City of London, today to find out how we could help you host the best event.