While COVID-19 has been tough on many people — none more so than the key workers on the frontline of this global pandemic — events organisers have been hit especially hard.
Since the UK Government announced a nationwide lockdown in March, the entire events industry has come to a grinding halt. Events from the worlds of music (Glastonbury) and sports (the Premier League) to cultural festivals (Notting Hill Carnival) and awards ceremonies (the British Soap Awards) have been postponed indefinitely or cancelled altogether due to Coronavirus, leaving both event planners and event go-ers in limbo for the foreseeable future.
For events organisers, it’s important that you keep your audience engaged during this period of uncertainty. This will give your attendees something to look forward to and help to keep the momentum of your event alive while reducing the likelihood of people cancelling their tickets or seeking a refund. You want to push the message that your event will happen eventually, and with extra time for planning, it will be better (and safer) than ever.
Whether you’ve organised a conference, seminar, roadshow, product launch or networking event, keeping your audience engaged and excited will make sure that all of your hard work doesn’t go to waste, and will give your corporate event the best chance for success when it does go ahead.
Here are four ways in which you can keep your event attendees engaged during the quarantine.
Keep Your Attendees Informed
COVID-19 has put a spanner in the works like never before, but it’s best to be as honest and transparent with your attendees as possible. This will let them know that just because things are on hold right now, you’re still working hard to make your event happen once lockdown is over.
Use email and social media to keep them informed, both on the current status of your event and any upcoming changes as soon as they happen, such as a tentative go-ahead date or a venue change. Safety is at the forefront of everybody’s minds right now, so be sure to communicate the safety measures and protocols that will be put in place at your event, reassuring them that their wellbeing is high on your list of priorities.
Share Content from Past Events
While your next event is on pause, why not look back to past years’ events to keep your audience engaged? Sharing content such as videos, photos and testimonials from previous events is a great and easy way to remind your attendees what they can look forward to. According to a recent survey, 26% of internet users are checking social media more often than before during lockdown, so use platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to your advantage.
Give Them Something of Value
Don’t just wait until your next event to show your attendees a good time; give them something of value while they’re waiting. Using video platforms like Zoom, Google Hangouts and, of course, YouTube, you could host an online workshop or webinar; broadcast a live discussion with a leading voice within your industry; or showcase a brand new product or service.
In a time when many people are tempted to cancel tickets and save money, adding value to your attendees’ lives will help to strengthen customer loyalty and reduce the likelihood of them dropping out.
Create an Online Community
Lockdown has been a lonely time for many people, which is why bringing people together in the digital realm is more important than ever. Creating a private Facebook group for your event attendees is a great way to create a place for people to chat and get to know each other, as well as for them to receive updates and ask questions regarding your event.
To break the ice and get people involved, you could pose questions, spark discussions or share interesting content related to the topic of your event. What’s beautiful about this is that when your event eventually does go ahead, your attendees can turn these online connections into real-life friendships.
How Absolute Venues Can Help You Organise Your Next Event
Like everything else in life, Coronavirus shall soon pass, and once lockdown restrictions are lifted and life gets back on track, event spaces will be in high demand. That’s why it’s important to have an experienced team like Absolute Venues by your side.
If you’re planning your next corporate event or looking for a new location to host your postponed event, we’re here to help you find the perfect venue. With a directory of over 160,000 venues worldwide and a dedicated team of professional event planners, our free venue finding service saves you the time, energy and stress of booking a venue while ensuring that your corporate event finds the ideal home.