5 Tips on Creating an Engaging Event

Marketing exec Tim Leberecht posted an interesting article about the future of workspaces. He makes the case that what we learn from conferences can be applied to the daily workplace experience. And planners of other meetings and events can draw inspiration from conferences, too.

Leberecht’s examples, many related to TED talks, illustrate what makes conferences so compelling and effective.

The subject is especially fitting for Creative Group, as we have recently moved offices specifically to make our everyday workspace more collaborative and transparent. Not to mention, other leading organizations are adapting their work settings to complement fluid lifestyles and become “brand beacons.”

Here’s a recap of Tim’s points about the indicators of impactful events:

  1. Create Intimate Experiences – Create an experience that will transform the audience – and the hosts – within a safe space to allow for openness and honest conversation. Help attendees step out of their comfort zone and open them up to learning and discovery.
  2. Gather Around a Purpose – “Something bigger than us is happening and you are a part of it.” Leaders can create ad hoc “communities” that further this purpose and rally around it, so a feeling of belonging will continue after the event is over.
  3. Tell Stories – Great storytelling inspires the observer emotionally and immerses them in the story. The emerging discipline of “quantum storytelling” makes experiences engaging because it places the story into our full contextual environment – how one relates to the world and to nature. This non-linear format allows for a collection of possibilities and potential.
  4. Design for Serendipity – Strategic and intentional design should enable the convergence of “qualified” strangers – one of the main reasons people attend meetings. Provide a framework for the unexpected to occur and the opportunity for networking and sharing. Connections happen during the breaks.
  5. Give Up Control – User-generated content is powerful in marketing, and crowdsourcing has become an efficient way of sourcing creative and copywriting gigs. Producing an “un-conference” might induce anxiety at first, but the outcome will undoubtedly lead to innovative ideas built by the collective, diverse minds of the audience.

Which of these can you apply to your events?

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