If you want to maintain attendance of your conferences, you need to have a way to keep the interest of the attendees.
After all, if you’re putting together a conference year after year, getting people to come back is going to be very challenging if you can’t provide a new experience every single time.
People spend their valuable time and money when attending conferences, and so if you want them to keep coming to your events over other similar ones, you need to have ways to capture their attention every single time.
That’s where creating appealing conference event themes can be so useful.
What Are Conference Event Themes?
As you probably know, most conferences have an underlying focus that they revolve around – whether it’s an industry, a profession, or a cause, conferences are a place where people gather to share valuable insights, deepen their knowledge, and develop new connections that can help achieve goals in the future.
However, the best corporate event production services providers know that if you want to keep your engagement numbers high, you need to be able to offer more than just the same conference every single year.
That’s why you should try to make your event more than just about the topic that it covers by choosing an underlying theme for each event. This theme should involve the biggest ideas that will be emphasized during the event, unique branding, or even additions to the program that don’t fall directly within the scope of the conference but can still offer immense value to the attendees.
Remember, you’re trying to attract the best of the best in the field that you operate in, and it’s likely that you’re competing with several other conferences for their attention. So the only way to stand out is to be bold and daring with your theme selection and get people talking about your conference long before it starts.
But how can you choose a theme that will captivate your target audience?
Well, let’s explore some of the most important aspects you should consider below.
Develop a Deep Understanding of Your Audience
You probably have a general idea of who will be attending your conference – depending on the industry that you operate in, you expect professionals and those interested in the topics that you cover to be the most likely people to be interested.
However, that’s just scraping the surface of what you could find out about your target audience, and if that’s all you’re going with, you are likely to end up with generic and faceless conferences that don’t generate any significant interest.
If you want to have a chance to generate a buzz around your conference, you must find out as much as possible about the people that you want to attend and then use that information to personalize your conference experience and choose a theme that generates the best response.
You should try to identify your absolute ideal attendee and make a very detailed description of his professional and personal information that could be relevant.
Things like their age, education, interests, experience, and motivation for attending your event can all play a role in the way that you run your marketing campaign and brand your event, as well as the activities and program that you end up putting together.
A good session tracking app can provide insights for crafting future conference themes that resonate with attendees. Session tracking apps not only capture attendee demographics but also how long attendees spend in each session and participation time at exhibits. The time spent at a session or exhibit reveals what attendees value.
Find a Venue That Helps Your Event Stand Out
When looking for venues, many professional conference organizers focus too much on the functional details such as capacity, amenities, or equipment.
However, that can leave you with a conference venue that, even though it meets all of the basic criteria of what you’re looking for, is simply too bland and boring to generate any excitement.
Therefore, you should look for a venue that positions your event as more exclusive and unique – don’t be afraid to be daring and choose a site that’s not traditionally associated with conferences, as you may find that it will serve your marketing efforts and help your conference stand out from the crowd.
Whether you choose a venue with a unique or modern design, or go with a repurposed older building that will provide your event a more exciting environment, you should try and think out of the box and consider going with a venue that no one else in the industry would even think of.
Of course, whatever you end up choosing, you need to think about convenience for your guests, so things like an accessible location, the necessary amenities, as well as AV production options are all things you need to consider as well.
Look for Niches That Aren’t Represented
Finally, when looking for a good theme for your event, you should look at the landscape of similar conferences that are being organized in your area and try to look for ways that your event could add value that’s missing everywhere else.
For instance, if you are organizing a business conference and find that most of the competing events focus on targeting larger corporations, you could shift your focus to a different segment of the audience and offer a more small-business oriented theme.
You could also emphasize certain features that your conference could provide that aren’t available in other events. Attracting more intriguing speakers, offering more interactive activities, or making it easier for your guests to build relationships can all be great features that you could make the center of your marketing campaign.
The important thing to remember when choosing a theme is that no matter how competitive your market may be, there will always be opportunities for attracting segments of the target audience that don’t have their needs met in other conferences.
About the author: Sarah Hill is a content writer at Seven Events Ltd – one of the leading event organisers in Birmingham specialising in corporate events, team building, incentive travel and organising conferences. She started her career in the events industry almost a decade ago; as time progressed she became an avid event blogger sharing her insight on corporate event planning.