Generally speaking, audience engagement has always been an aspect of event strategies. Yet there now exists, in this (nearly) post-pandemic, a real craze for all possible practices that might increase event engagement rates. Should we be discussing this merely as a trend, or as a reconfiguration of public expectations?
Propelled by the pandemic period, the part that is now being played by digital in our communications, and especially in breathing life into our events, has opened up a much broader range of options when it comes to exploring and stimulating public engagement.
Though engagement has always been at the heart of our industry’s concepts, today it has become unthinkable for event production to omit this (major) factor. The pandemic has left its mark by changing the event landscape and the expectations we can place upon it, more so than ever before. These transformations have paved the way to new avenues of inquiry. How can we better understand our audience? How else might such a thing be done?
Lulu’s advice: guests should not feel like they are at an endless holiday meal, with (overly) stuffed bellies. You know the feeling – the one that puts you to sleep thinking: “every year the same song and dance”? Well, that’s precisely what we wish to avoid! Several methods for stimulating engagement have been devised. Digital / virtual techniques developed during the pandemic have demonstrated how essential new technologies are for both their attractiveness and for the fact that they enable a measuring of engagement before / during / after an event.
Event participants no longer wish to be mere spectators of content served up on a platter. Today, they prefer to be challenged, and to be an active part of an unfolding story.
Immersive experiences are part of the engaging neolanguage that the effects of the pandemic have gifted us. They allow us to elicit a drive among attendees to act as protagonists, and what could possibly be better than to feel considered? Is that not the impactful value with which we seek to imbue our events? Immersion in the world of a brand or company also means replying to someone’s “What’s new?” with “I attended an event that I won’t soon forget! It was amazing”!
Whatever form they might take, immersive experiences are talked about and have educational virtues vis-à-vis not only a company, but also event guests themselves – because there is nothing better than letting participants leave with the feeling of having learned something.
Some avenues that might be explored? Where would we be without imagination? What could we learn if we weren’t being asked the right questions? As you will have understood, the event concepts that elicit commitment are those that awaken creativity and boost sharing, guided by a single watchword: federate. In a domain where the acceleration of modernity takes on its full meaning, we should stop for a moment and give our audience a voice.
Speaking of asking the right questions: what about creating memories? Engagement is also fostered through connection, wherein memories are generated and can then be given room to grow thanks to the creation of events. Memories constitute a common identity. And what could more strongly nourish a company’s culture?
Engagement is now considered a retention lever for companies. At the present time, with a labour shortage is in full swing, it is relevant to speak a common language by affirming new codes and waving the flag of common values.
Considering all this, it is now obvious that engagement is at the very heart of the event production process. If we are talking here about neolanguage, it is because the term itself has been reconceptualised due to the influence of the pandemic. Is this a positive consequence? Well, yes, insofar as event dynamics operate in the general interest of participants. More than a trend, soon the neolanguage of engagement will no longer be quite so new…