Whether your guest list is 10 people or 100 people, a celebration or a business presentation, hosting a memorable and enjoyable event starts with guest engagement.
What is Guest Engagement?
Engaged guests are involved, emotionally connected, committed and greatly interested. They participate in, share, interact with and experience the people and activities at your event. They are part of what makes your event memorable.
Here are 5 ways to create energy and engage your guests at your next event:
Designate a Master of Ceremonies
For small groups, this is probably you, or the host. For larger groups, hiring a professional emcee who knows how to speak in public and engage a crowd is priceless. It is the emcee’s responsibility to connect with each individual, make them feel welcome, guide them through what is happening at the event and keep the energy elevated.
Performers are entertaining and all, but an interactive performance really gets your guests engaged. Find a performer who will customize his/her performance to include something specific about your guests or invite guests to participate in the act. Comedians, musical acts, murder mystery theater or dueling pianos are all options for interactive entertainment.
I know what you are thinking. Gami-what-now?!? Gamify. Gamification is the practice of using game thinking and game mechanics in a non-game situation. Creating a game for your event doesn’t have to involve tons of high-cost technology, though there are a number of apps out there. Gamification can be as simple as networking or team building activities, or even a live, interactive game show.
Guests as Presenters
Asking key audience members to be part of the presentation is a surefire way to engage. If you are celebrating, ask some of your guests to give a toast or make a speech. If you are conducting a company training, divide your audience into groups and ask them to present their solution to a question or a puzzle.
The internet isn’t the only way to get social. Social-up your event by creating a unique hashtag for your guests to use when posting to Instagram or Twitter. Create a Facebook Group for your guests so they can continue the interaction even after the event is over. Adding a social component ensures meaningful memories can evolve to meaningful relationships.