Live events are not just about getting people in door, but also keeping attendees engaged before, during and after the event. Event success is not measured solely on attendance numbers, but in your ability to create an engaging, extraordinary experience for attendees.


Attendee engagement is directly related to the level of commitment, involvement and satisfaction in an event. Your main objective is to increase the value that people take away from an event. So regardless of the types of events your company hosts—whether client appreciation, networking, educational or other industry-related events—here are few tips to boost attendee engagement at your next live event.

1. Make it personal

Attendees want to know that they are appreciated or recognized for coming to your events. You can do this by asking specific questions during registration to get information on why they are attending, what they want to learn, etc. Then, using this data, segment your attendees into lists and send personalized, relevant emails that gives them the information they want before, during and after the event.

2. Create a hashtag

A lot of business professionals today have use Twitter to stay on top of news and information. One way to keep attendees engaged is to encourage tweeting during the event and running a live feed of the hashtag on a screen in the room during the event. You can even creative incentives for the top tweeters. Not only does this keep attendees engaged, but it also raises awareness of your event on social media and engages people that aren’t in attendance.

3. Make time for networking

Networking is always listed among the top reasons business people give for attending events and conferences. So make sure you create intentional time before, during or even after the event for people to network and engage with each other. This can include having a cocktail hour after the event, a meal right before an event or breaks between speakers or activities. However you do it, encourage your guests to meet someone new and network.

4. Give compelling presentations

Everyone loves a good speaker or presentation. Be sure the speakers at your event have compelling presentations that will engage the audience and entertain, educate or inspire (ideally all three) your audience. Here are a few ways to make your sure your presentations are compelling:

Show pictures & graphics – Slides should be filled with images and VERY little text.

Give real stats during event – If you send out a pre-event survey to your attendees, giving real stats about who is in the audience and how they responded to your questions is always a good way to engage your audience.

Perform a real-time survey – During presentations, ask a question and have the audience answer with their mobile devices.

5. Build a community around your event

Create an event group on LinkedIn, Google+ or Facebook where attendees start discussions leading up to the event and can continue discussions during and after the event and stay engaged. Be sure to post photos from the event in these groups. Also, offer content, presentations, videos, etc. after the event that reinforces key points and messages from the event.

6. Have a “cool” factor

Find something that will be a conversation starter at your next event. Photo booths can work for more informal events. Interactive floor projections are a new piece of technology that will get people talking. It could even just be a different centerpiece or piece of art. Don’t underestimate decoration and design. Get creative and have fun with it and your guests will too.

Events are not just about attendance anymore; they are about engaging your audience before, during and after the event. Hopefully these tips will give you some ideas to make your next event more valuable and enjoyable for attendees.