Your association’s annual meeting has the power to excite and engage current members, while marketing the benefits you provide to a whole new audience. But only if your meeting is exceptional!
If your events have gotten stale and anticipation for them has taken a dive, it’s time for a refresh. Fortunately, that’s exactly what we’re talking about today. Keep reading to learn four tips you can use to improve your annual meetings immediately.
How to Refresh Your Annual Meeting
You’ve decided that your annual meeting needs a refresh. But how do you do it? We’ve got you! here are four tips you can use to plan unique, out of this world events for your attendees.
1. Invest in Modern Technology
Modern technology has the potential to make your next annual meeting more engaging and effective. If you use it correctly, of course. We have a few ideas on this front to help:
Live Stream Your Event: Not everyone who wants to attend your annual meeting will be able to. There are many potential reasons for this including COVID regulations and lack of funds. By live streaming your event, you’ll be able to connect with more people.
Encourage Social Media: Social media has the ability to be a powerful tool in your event-planning tool belt. For instance, you can tap these platforms to run live polls during sessions. Or respond to customer service questions. Or build online communities to increase engagement.
Use a Proven Event App: The right event app can supercharge the attendee experience. One example is Bizzabo, which allows users to build stunning event websites, easily register and communicate with attendees, boost audience engagement, gain real-time insights, and more.
2. Book Professional Entertainment
Another way to refresh your annual meeting is to book professional entertainers. There are a wide range of options available to you. Here are a few that we recommend:
Magic Shows: Nothing amazes a crowd quite like magic. Stun your audience with a performance by Digital Deception, a highly regarded magical duo who use technology to astound and mystify.
Comedy Routines: On the other hand, maybe you want to help you attendee relax in between sessions. Hire a clean comedian like Andy Hendrickson to amplify the fun factor.
The key to annual meeting entertainment is connecting with the right acts. Fortunately, that’s exactly what we do at Funny Business! Contact us and we’ll help you find the perfect performer for your next gathering.
3. Seek and Use Audience Feedback
You create your annual meeting for a specific demographic. So doesn’t it make sense to ask those people what they think of your event? We think so!
Audience feedback can be used to choose better meeting themes, secure relevant keynote speakers, plan more entertaining sessions and activities, and a lot more. The question is, how do you get feedback?
The easiest way is to ask attendees for their opinions via an exit survey. When your next annual meeting concludes, ask your audience what they liked, what they didn’t, and what they want to see next time. Then—and this is key—use the feedback they give you to plan next year’s annual meeting.
You can also learn about your audience by studying the data. For example, you might discover that a large portion of your members sign up for your annual meeting, but don’t attend. This could mean that attendee engagement is low, which is definitely a problem that you can work to fix in the future.
4. Dare to Be Different
Lastly, take a look at other annual meetings—especially ones in your industry. Notice what they’re doing, then brainstorm ways that you can do things differently without destroying the attendee experience.
For instance, if the typical annual meeting in your industry is hosted in an urban location, book a lodge in the mountains. If the “normal” free time activities consist of cafeteria runs and boring meet and greets, plan excursions that allow attendees to get out and interact with each other in real-world ways.
Plan a Better Annual Meeting
To sum up, giving your annual meeting a refresh doesn’t need to be hard. By implementing the tips in this article, your event will feel fresh, engage attendees, and help accomplish your goals. Good luck!