On getting relevant
Event for events sake. You know it’s good to get people into a room for actual face to face time. Where they can do things like shake hands, drink stale coffee, be offended by the carpet and learn stuff collaboratively.
Research shows that face-to-face interaction is vital for building trust and growing relationships. And according to a report from Meeting Professionals International (MPI), 40% of prospects converted to new customers through face-to-face meetings, while 28% of current business would be lost without face-to-face meetings.
So you get your budget signed off, set a date, find a venue and start writing invites. But before you go and spend all your budget on what you think you audience wants, stop.
Here’s a not-so-crazy idea; ASK your target audience what they want from your next event. People are busy busy busy. Your event it has to offer some insane not-to-be-missed content to get them to show their faces.
Whether it’s a product launch or intimate networking event, here are 3 ways to start in the right direction:
Do a competitive landscape. Find out the other events your target audience attends. Then work out your event USP and how you can position it to stand out from the crowd. Desk research is a good start but set a time limit and research methodically. (There are a lot of blogs, articles, videos which suck you into a black research hole and before you know it a week of your life has passed and all you have to show for it is a head swimming with opinion).
Find out what your audience most needs to know. Make a list of your target audience who need to be at the event. Call them. Go for a coffee and a bun. Find out about the challenges they face in the workplace. Dig down to understand what is keeping them up at night. Then write an agenda to answer those questions. They’ll love you for it.
Ask for feedback on your event agenda from your target audience. Not only will this show you’ve listened but also by getting your audience involved in shaping the content and sharing their opinions you’ve created an in-group mentality (helllooo influencers. We’ll come back to how to leverage them in another post).