The Ultimate Guide to Improving Event Attendee Engagement

How to engage your attendees at every stage of the live event journey.

Host Engaging Events

Continuously Engage Your Attendees

Successful events allow attendees to learn something new, network with peers, make new connections, be entertained, and even find new solutions for their pain points.

With so much happening before and at an event, attendees risk becoming distracted or fatigued.

How can meeting planners stay ahead? Our guide gives you proven engagement strategies that have worked for our clients for every event type.  Keep reading and learn how to continuously engage your attendees at every stage of the event journey.

Pre-event Engagement

Improve Engagement Before an Event

Attendee engagement should begin prior to an event or meeting. From the moment your event is formally announced, communicating with prospective audience members is key. Here are some strategies to effectively communicate with your audience before your event.

Social media - We know attendees are engaged on social channels. Social media allows an easy and open line of communication between attendees and event organizers. You can create groups specifically for your event or interact with known existing groups on channels such as Facebook, Linkedln, and Quora.

Hash tags - Introducing your event hashtag early on allows attendees to become familiar with it and interact with it. It also serves as a great resource for attendees to find news and updates in one central place.

Email - An informative email can be used to re-engage prior event attendees, providing details of the upcoming event as well as announcing the event to prospects. Your email invitation is the first touchpoint for potential attendees, so be sure to spend time crafting the right message. If you used a mobile event app for your last event, consider including stats about usage and engagement. You can also include comments from the previous year's attendee surveys and a link to a highlight video from the previous year's event.

Crowdsource event content - Using social media, your event hashtag, or email, engage potential attendees by asking them to weigh in with suggestions. Most of your event details may have been worked out, but if you are making some last-minute tweaks, it doesn't hurt to ask what attendees would value most.

Boost your revenue by understanding your sponsor’s goals

Whether their goals are to generate as many leads as possible, spark interesting one-on-one conversations, or to simply boost brand awareness, your dedicated MeetingPlay event team can help you put together personalized packages that will wow your potential sponsors.

During Event Engagement

Improve Engagement During an Event

For many events, attendee engagement is strongest on the first day of an event and attendee participation wanes as attendees start thinking about the office and see their email piling up. But fear not! We've got some tips and tricks to keep your audience captivated throughout your entire live event. 

Social walls - A social wall is a large screen at your event that shows photos or posts tagged with your event hashtag. Everyone can engage in the conversation with photos, videos, and more. Attendees see everything happening at the event in a fun way that encourages them to post about their experience. Typically, social walls are displayed in areas where people tend to gather, like in the registration area, near breaks, or in lounges.

Event gamification - Gamification offers a rewarding way for attendees to learn and engage while at an event. Attendees are awarded points for actions like connecting with people, visiting a certain sponsor, or answering questions in a poll. The possibilities of event engagement with gamification are endless. There are many different types of games you can consider. The type of game that works best is typically based on the specific goals of your meeting. If you want to learn more about gamification, check out our Guide to Event Gamification

Push notifications - Real-time push notifications help attendees stay connected to anything happening at the meeting. Have a speaker update, agenda change, or special offer to promote? Push notifications allow you to engage with your event attendees immediately, maximizing real-time communication.

Live polling and Q&A - With live polling, speakers can connect with audience members while on stage by asking questions which attendees answer via their mobile event app. Results are shown immediately. Attendees love seeing the results displayed on a large screen because it makes them feel like they are part of the action.

Matchmaking - Networking is often listed as a primary reason why people attend events, but we know many people find networking a bit daunting. Make networking easy for attendees through attendee matchmaking. Pair attendees based on their titles, purposes for being at the event, or any other details you find relevant. Attendees can then see shared interests, view each other's profiles, and connect in-person, chat, or start a video call with their network.


Post-event Engagement

Improve Engagement After an Event

Congratulations! You've hosted a successful event. The time immediately following your event is critical while your attendees are still on a post-event high. Use these strategies to take advantage of the awesome momentum you've created. 

Say thanks - After your event, don't forget to say thank you. Send out an email, update your event group page on Facebook, add a message to your Linkedln post, send out a tweet (using your event hashtag!) ... regardless of the method, be sure the message is clear: Thank you for attending our event. Thank you for engaging with our event. Thank you. Thank You. THANK YOU!

Analyze your data and reporting - With more data available than ever before, your event technology partner can provide robust post-event data on engagement and much more. Post-event analytics reports can range from session ratings to session engagement actions to download statistics. This information can help you measure ROI and improve future events.

Send a survey - You can notify attendees about the survey and send reminders through your mobile conference app or virtual event platform. Not only does a survey offer you important insights from attendee feedback, it also helps you stay relevant, as you are reminding attendees of the event once they are back to their regular routines. Check out ideas for post-event survey questions

Share your content - With more attendees choosing to attend events virtually, it's more important than ever to leverage on-demand content. Capture sessions on video, and share it with your event attendees. Did a session have a really interesting Q&A session? Post those questions and responses for all to see. You can use social media channels, your event hashtag, and email for content sharing.

Conclusion - It has become increasingly important to provide meaningful experiences for attendees. Interacting with attendees during the full event journey - and offering them the best possible value for their time spent at your event - is the new norm. As engagement is the new event currency, MeetingPlay's virtual platform and mobile event app can help you engage your attendees at all stages of the event journey and offer them experiences beyond expectation.

MeetingPlay can help you leverage these engagement strategies and more. Talk to a MeetingPlay team member about how we can help you improve end-to-end audience engagement.