Welcome to the second part of our four-part blog series on Engaging Attendees Inside and Outside Sessions. Inspired by our round table discussions at the UK Associations Congress, in part one we looked at the importance of pre-event communication. We’re now going to review how attendee networking can really help boost overall event engagement.
Traditional networking was a laborious process of sifting through name badges and business cards.
Event tech has revolutionised networking so that it is now more efficient, fast and targeted. Event apps in particular are the perfect tool to facilitate attendee networking.
With so much content available online, a major benefit of attending a live event is to meet other attendees.
It’s not easy to get the conversations going between attendees pre-event. It can be awkward to send a message to someone you have never met.
Discussion boards can make initiating that first connection easier. Think about creating groups around both conference related topics, and also around extra curricular activities e.g. a running group discussion or a sightseeing discussion group.
Another suggestion is to use the event app messaging to groups functionality to introduce attendees to each other and get the conversation started. This could be managed by the event planner or key influencers within the audience or organising committee.
Encouraging attendees to complete their profile pre-event (and inspiring them to message other attendees) is a great way to get them excited about the event.
The best way to do this is to highlight the networking opportunity in pre-event comms and limit the calls to action to one action per email.
For example, an email dedicated to attendee networking will be more effective than including it in a “how to access your event app” email. So long as each email communication is adding value your audience won’t view them as overkill.