What a great start to the week for everyone at
Over 110+ event professionals, service and tech providers came together at Wakefield Park in Berkshire for this annual 2-day summit. The event was packed with educational seminars, supplier-buyer speed dating opportunities and new ideas and tips for audience engagement. We've had great discussions all round. All this topped off with excellent food and entertainment by the organisers.
We came to meet new people and left with additional inspiration on how to design, plan, and deliver better events. We have also learned how some of the event planners have used different techniques to re-energise their presentations and engage their audiences.
Part I - The journey of an event
Day one of the event started with an interactive session from David Bassett & Ruth Dowson (Leeds Beckett University). They shared their tips and best practices in the planning and execution stage of the event:
Set clear objectives
We all know that focusing on customer needs first is of uttermost importance. In order to measure the results of your event, there must be clear and measurable objectives right at the beginning. Otherwise, how do we know if results are good or bad? Only if you have the event objectives in mind, can you then design an event that fits your customers'
Involve your stakeholders
From previous discussions with Elling Hamso (ROI Institute), I’ve remembered him stating: "Every person to which the success of the event is important, can be seen as a stakeholder. Stakeholders can potentially have conflicting objectives which need to be reconciled by the main meeting owner. Having templates and processes in place can help get everyone in sync.
Build business relationships
We are all aware that business relationships are important. But how can we maintain and grow these vital relationships with our suppliers and make them a part of our own events team? In response to that discussion, most delegates stated they are working towards a
Part II - Corporate Speed-Dating
Following the session, we had the chance to meet and mingle with the respective Head of Events at top UK companies. These, among many others, included British Water, Brother, AIG,
The format of these sessions which took place before and after lunch was a 20-minute speed-dating setup which I think worked really well and was the perfect time duration. Just enough time to show our potential clients how
It’s always great to learn more about our clients' upcoming events and what their goals and difficulties are and how
"Technology needs to be easy then I will use it." [Click here to tweet]
A quote we should remember. It really shows that
We finished the first day with an educational session from Abi Cannons (former Educational Content Executive at Reed Exhibitions). She provided us with some useful insights on audience engagement, activities that endorse your delegates’ networking and methods to make your panels more engaging. Her advice was that using images in presentations can go a long way. Plus, having a seed question planted to engage more questions is another strategy. Or even displaying the wrong answer on the main screen to create interaction and get people talking is a cheeky way one of the delegates recommended. We love talking about those strategies.
What we thought…
Overall, we can highly recommend the Event Organisers Summit for planners and suppliers alike. We've made new connections, had interesting conversations and left inspired with new ideas.