Becky Walker is head of pitch strategy at Fresh
We’ve been taking a long, hard look at the events industry this year and especially looking at our own approach to working with our clients and their events.
We carried out a survey with 150 clients and leading figures in the industry and the results have led us to highlight four important areas that need addressing throughout the industry.
1) Gain stakeholders agreement
A large number of internal stakeholders can often be involved in decision-making, creating a long and arduous task for event organisers when gaining sign off.
Ideally, the event approach will be single-minded, provide clarity on the objectives it hopes to achieve and clearly support the greater business strategy.
Taking a strategic approach to writing the brief and agreeing the core proposition will ensure this is achieved and should lead to clarity of event purpose and easier sign-off.
2) Make sure your audience is completely engaged
True delegate engagement will always remain a top priority, but how can you ensure engagement levels remain year-on-year, even if the event format stays the same or the budget is reduced?
Delegate insight should play a crucial role in producing content that is relevant to your audience, and therefore engaging.
Our research has shown that 53% of respondents chose to work with an agency based on their insight and knowledge of their business. While this is encouraging, there is definitely the need for more delegate insight to feature in the future.
3) Deliver total brand immersion
True brand immersion can be an effective method of achieving engagement, which often leads to creating real brand advocates. Events provide the perfect platform to immerse delegates and consumers in your brand, creating unique experiences and strong connections.
Brand immersion can be created by ensuring brand insight is gathered and used in the initial event brief. This is then reflected through fantastic brand-based creative and content leading from the brief, which brings the brand to life through the live event environment.
4) Prove effectiveness through measurement
Proving effectiveness is a vital part of every event organiser’s job, with the insight from feedback helping to guide future event development and secure budgets.
As one event stakeholder at a blue-chip brand said: "I have to fight for every penny and the budget is cut every year. We’ve got to prove value through colleague feedback and make sure senior stakeholders see the value for themselves."
However, some measurement variables are much more valuable than others. Measuring delegate enjoyment along with logistical considerations only provides a limited amount of insight for a business.
Producing clearly-defined, meaningful measurement variables that align with strategic goals are far more valuable and can help prove the worth of the event.
Our survey showed that 73% of respondents always measure the effectiveness of their events, 25% only occasionally do and two per cent never do. This demonstrates an opportunity for those who don’t measure often, or who don’t measure the right variables, to prove the true worth of their events through a more strategic approach to evaluation.
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