Unengaged attendees are an event planner’s worst nightmare. After all the planning, long hours, and late nights that go into putting together a conference or annual event, the last thing you want is for the experience to fall flat. Offering unique conference sessions is a great way to ensure your event goers stay engaged, interested, and excited to attend again next year.
Here are some ways you can mix it up and offer an event experience like never before.
Add an element of fun to your event! Scavenger hunts can be a great way to help attendees engage with sponsors, visit more exhibitors, and interact more with one another.
Wondering how you can implement this type of gamification into your conference? SCANvenger Hunt is an event technology platform that can be used at conferences and tradeshows. Their award-winning platform mixes experiential marketing with social media to drive sales and increase foot-traffic in specific exhibit areas.
In addition to scavenger hunts within in an event venue, they also offer solutions for city-wide scavenger hunts as well as team building activities for breakout sessions. The opportunities are endless!
Spice up traditional networking formats with some speed networking. Rather than having your attendees mix and mingle at a cocktail event or welcome reception—like they have at every other conference they’ve ever been to—really help them connect with fellow event-goers in a more structured and strategic way.
Speed networking is an accelerated, efficient way to help your attendees build meaningful business relationships. And we aren’t talking about round robin speed networking. We’re talking about targeted speed networking.
What is targeted speed networking? It’s strategic networking that pairs people together who share the same interests to ensure the right people are connecting. We call it smart.
Ditch the technology:
Most conference sessions incorporate some sort of technology: powerpoint, smartphones, clickers, etc. Even sessions that aren’t technology-focused end up with attendees on their phone—they’re texting a friend, scrolling through social media, responding to an email. Instead, host a session that is intentionally technology-free. Plan something outside and let your attendees breath in some fresh air and get to know one another, free from distractions.
As we continue to see an increasing shift towards sustainable event planning practices, individual event sessions are a great way to show your commitment to more eco-friendly events. Rather than offering the usual charging station have your attendees generate the power by riding bikes. It’s interactive, engaging, and without a doubt unique. Your attendees will be moving and grooving in no time.
What better way to start the day than with a peaceful yoga practice? Yoga has been proven time and time again to have both physical and mental health benefits. After a session of stretching, deep breathing, and relaxation, your attendees will have more energy to devote to later sessions and are much less likely to drag throughout the day. Plus, it's always hard to find the time and tools needed to stay active while traveling. Trust us, your more health-minded attendees will thank you. Here are some yoga classes for conferences.
Cocktails and canvases:
Get the creative juices flowing with a more art-centered session! Bring in an instructor to conduct a class and include some cocktails. It’s a stress-free way for attendees to interact with one another.
Find an organization in your host city and see how you can get involved. Attendees can build lasting connections when they come together to help and give back to a community. The more hands-on and involved you can be, the better.
We hope these unique conference sessions can help create an experience your attendees will never forget. No matter what, attendees always appreciate something that is different from every other conference they've ever attended. And remember, you can't please everyone. But the more options you offer, the better your chances!