Engaging Attendees With Pre-Event Communications

Engaged attendees equal a successful event. However, even with the most informative and interesting event content, keeping busy minds focused on your event can be a challenge, I recently had the pleasure of hosting a discussion table at the UK Associations Congress. Our topic was Engaging Attendees Inside and Outside Sessions and we discussed how achieve this with event technology.

Inspired by our discussions, we've compiled a series of blog posts that look at how event planners can keep attendees on side and on track. We start here with the importance of pre-event communications. Make sure you check out the other topics in this series below:

Pre-Event Communications

As an Event tech company we are often asked about using event tech to engage attendees before the event even begins.

It's no surprise many event planners find this challenging. Think of the lead-in to a large event. Attendees are busy working extra hard to clear their diaries and inboxes to dedicate a couple of days to being at your event.  And as the event planner, you are probably working countless extra hours to finalise all the details of the live event itself.

Although the run-up to an event is a busy time, pre-event communications are a critical part of engaging attendees. Ideally,  pre-event comms are one element of a year long communications plan with your target audience.

Assuming you know the topics you want to discuss pre-event, let's look at how you use event tech to facilitate the discussion.

Which Channel?

In most scenarios event planners will use the appropriate social media channel(s) to engage attendees pre-event, however there some events where a private discussion channel will generate the best outcome.

This is where event tech in the form of an event app can help. You launch your event app a couple of weeks before the event which gives an opportunity to populate the in-app private discussion board with interesting topics and encourage the debate and discussion to begin.

Top Tip: Tee up key influencers in your audience to contribute immediately to kickstart the conversations. Read more about Discussion Boards 

Event App Survey

Other ways event tech can help is to survey the attendees pre-event.

This is simple to do using an event app. Create a survey and send a push notification with a link to it via the app and via an email.

Video Power

Don’t underestimate the power of video. We are seeing more and more conferences have their speakers record quick introductions or teasers of their session content. The teaser videos are added to the event app, and promoted via a combination of email , the event website, the app and of course social media.

This is a great way to get attendees thinking about and discussing topics before your event begins. Don’t think that the videos need to be high quality studio productions. In a world of Facebook live and selfies, quick self-produced smart phone videos are welcome and expected.