The mark of a great conference is seeing familiar faces return year after year. The challenge for meeting planners is maintaining the elements that attendees love, while also keeping the event from becoming stale. Here are our tips for ensuring that your conference attendees keep coming back for more!
A First Time for Everything
A great way to cultivate returning attendees is to make sure first-time participants feel welcomed. This can start before your event begins by creating a landing page for rookies to visit with informational tip sheets and FAQs, as well as blog content on your website geared toward first-timers.
Of course, providing a welcoming atmosphere for all of your attendees is a way to encourage repeat business. It's also a good idea to make returning participants feel special. For people who have reached a milestone with your conference, give them a shout-out in your conference program or give them a special pin that they can proudly display as they make the rounds. You can also show your appreciation with a discount on their conference registration.
While your commitment to customer service should remain constant, the content of your conference should stay fresh from year-to-year. Keep up-to-date with important trends and concerns in your industry and make sure it's reflected in the panels and keynote speakers you present to attendees. Use data from your end-of-conference surveys to help you plan for next year. Your attendees have already told you what has worked well and what hasn't, so don't let that information go to waste!
Experience it All
More and more, attendees are looking for the "wow" factor when it comes to choosing a conference. Creating an experience, not just an event, for participants is crucial to keeping your registration numbers from decreasing. Whether that experience comes from the content of your conference or the onsite amenities available at your venue, be sure to remember that your attendees are looking for more than just a lecture. From the moment your attendees set foot in the conference venue, the task of converting them to a returnee begins. The weight of producing a stellar event doesn't need to fall squarely on your shoulders, though. Let the qualified staff of The Otesaga help you create an experience your attendees won't forget. The serene lakeside setting of our upstate New York hotel combined with our resort amenities provide the perfect location for your next meeting or conference.