With so many aspects to consider, newbie conference organizers usually have this question in mind: Where do we start? Contrary to what most people think, which is to start with a theme, the best way to begin the planning is to know what drives attendees to conferences.
If you know what makes people attend corporate events, you’ll be able to frame your theme better, filter topics and speakers easily, and design activities that tickle and sustain their interests. And all of these are what makes conferences successful.
New, Relevant Information
This is the most obvious reason. People attend because they want to pick up new information about a new product, learn the industry’s best practices, and share new information with their colleagues. But you can take this step further by creating an “experience of information.”
Dedicate spaces in your venue where you can install pockets of exhibitions where people could try out the new product or see for themselves models of doing business or whichever your theme is about. Event production companies in Denver, CO like One Floor Up can help you integrate this creatively in your conference.
People also go to conferences because they want to meet people, colleagues from the same industry, potential coworkers from other industries, and thought leaders. For the millennials, this is a top consideration, given that this is the social generation.
While attendees are free to network on their own, it will do your event a great service if you’ll intentionally promote networking through your activities. For instance, in between talks, you can have an icebreaker where people will have to roam around, introduce themselves, and exchange business cards. Whatever you do, make networking part of your program.
This is what organizers often fail to recognize. Where you hold your conference matters. In fact, some attendees claim that they only go to conferences because they know from past experiences that the location is relaxing and would give them the break they need.
On the flip side, some attendees don’t consider going even if the speakers are great when the location is too far from them. So when planning your conference, consider carefully where to hold it.
Again, a good starting point for holding a conference is the motivation of attendees. When brainstorming for theme, topics, activities, or venue, always keep your audience in mind.