15 Creative Promotion Ideas to Increase event engagement Apart from making sure that everything is working smoothly during the event, increasing audience engagement is crucial to make it successful. In this digital world where every little thing can be accessed with the help of a single phone, face to face interactions and physical meetings and gestures are becoming a privilege for customers and businesses. Especially in the events industry, audience engagement makes the whole event planning fun, interactive, informative and enables growth at the same time. Marketers and organisers can collect rich attendee data by ensuring consistent audience engagement through an event planning app. The whole process of audience engagement starts way before the event day and continues even after that. However, if you are not familiar with the points that can help improve your brand image and increase engagement then you need to read ahead. We have accumulated 15 pre and post-event day tips and promotion ideas that can help in increasing your event engagement. 1. Start with a Blog Post In order to promote any upcoming event, always start with a blog. Make sure you add all the details in a structured manner so that people can understand easily. The company blog about the event is important because it will help the marketing team learn critical information like sessions, keynotes, parties, food requirements, exhibitors, sponsors etc. This blog will help you create the pre-event buzz and if you add a link for registration, it will increase traffic on your blog along with attendee footfall on the day of the event. 2. Social media promotion with Hashtag A Twitter or Instagram hashtag is important. It should be unique and made especially for your event. It is a great promotion strategy for marketers. They can promote event details and content with using this hashtag. Using a unique code for your event will make sure that social media engagement is high. People will talk, post pictures or share posts with the tags before, after and even during the event. Using an event management app, people can post it all directly on social media channels, too. Proper use of hashtags is important to create the buzz, make sure you are not using a dummy or unnecessary hashtags while promoting your event information as it can decrease the reach on social media because of the algorithms used by Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Apart from the attendees using your hashtag make sure you promote it throughout the event to maximise the reach. By clicking on the hashtag, people can check all the public posts together, it basically means that the information will come under one tag and users do not have to go and check the posts individually on your pages. 3. Plan the Room Design and seating arrangement to maximize engagement The first step of meeting planning is designing and the seating structure of the room. Strategically organising the room and the seating plan can help ensure maximum interaction and audience engagement. Cognitive engagement can be improved by positioning attendees on a table as a group or with familiar faces. It will help users to be less shy and engage more. 4. Know Your Attendees It is really important for the organisers to know their audience before the event starts. This not-to-be-missed step helps organisers to prepare and execute well. All this ultimately helps in increasing engagement. Work on their demographic and psychographic attributes like name, location, company, designation, how can you help them, what interests them etc. Collect all this information and try to analyse it. Come up with ways that can make the event and the activities more relevant, fun and interest your audience. If the attendees are enjoying during the event, they will be stress-free, interact more with fellow attendees. Make attendee personas to segment them into categories and decide activities accordingly. Make sure each and every group has an option they can participate in and enjoy more. 5. Compelling Sessions and Speakers Networking, learning and sharing experiences, tips etc. is the main reason why people attend events. This is the reason why elite speakers and sessions are always in demand during events. Make sure people gain something by attending your events. Compelling and informative sessions by well-known speakers will attract more attendees to your event and increase engagement. 6. Have Live Polls Live polls are a great way to make sessions interactive while collecting data that can be leveraged for better user experience in the future. For participation and winning these polls, you can offer prizes to the attendees like airline tickets. Hotel bookings etc. This can be done both offline or online. You can either ask the attendees to visit your booth or make an event engagement app with live polls feature for gamification. Group polls are great engagement and relationship building exercises. These polls provide a platform to promote brands and sponsors along with networking. 7. Invest in a Mobile Event App Develop mobile apps for events and conferences, it can shoot up the engagement rate by a big margin. In the 21st century where technology is taking over all the aspects of our life, using it to optimize events is an easy and effective way. From online registration, social media sharing, live polls, in-app chats and even check-in codes, everything can be done with just one app. Apps basically simplify the process for users and reduce monotonous work for the organisers. Users get a customised experience from the start, they can ask questions, decide the events they are interested in and plan their day accordingly, get personalised session alerts based on their choices. Event engagement app have been around for a while, we just need to work to optimize it so that it can cater to our needs. 8. Alert Attendees About Sessions Personalised in-app pop-ups, push notifications and alerts via SMS, email is a good strategy to promote audience engagement. Based on user behaviour and other demographics, share the sessions and activities that you believe will attract a segment more. During the event, you can send notifications based on heatmaps to get more engagement. 9. Microblogging- Long posts on social media Microblogging can boost audience engagement. It is different from traditional blogs because the pieces are usually small and the platform is social media e.g. Twitter, Facebook, snap chat, Instagram etc. You can add real-time images for the company and the event e.g. behind the scenes of the event. Just make sure that you alert the attendees and followers through your event app before you post, to maximize engagement. 10. Free gifts and Special Perks VIP status to after-parties, loyalty points, visitation gift, free consultations is some of the perks that users love. If these are unexpected then even better, audiences love surprises and free gifts. These little gifts will make your brand memorable and force the attendees to learn about your product and engage more during the event. The word of mouth theory will also work wonders after this, Happy customers are equal to great sales. 11. Invest in cool and trendy merchandise People are quite interested in cool and edgy merchandise with some swag. Try to incorporate it at your booth. Don’t just tell customers about your company using brochures or lay things out for them to read. You can have branded keychains, belt bags, pens, selfie sticks etc. These little things will help catch the user’s eye to your booth and increase engagement with your company. Brainstorm and ask you, team, about creative ideas that will help attract people to your booth and shortlist the swagiest one you can find. 12. Build a Great Booth Design Online interaction is necessary however, it cannot replace the physical world. Engagement with booths is a tricky process that can be done in many ways. Find ways to make your booth intriguing. You can gamify the whole information sharing process, give out prizes, create theme-based experience etc. You can use technology and VR to gamify the event too, like ask the users to use the live poll feature on their event engagement app and they can use the VR arena for 20 minutes or win a free gift. Think of something out of the box and inviting. Maybe go for a hiking trail theme to give users an interesting experience. It will make them look twice. They’ll get curious about what more you have planned. This will without a doubt increase engagement with attendees and even potential clients. 13. Leverage Event Technology During the event, apart from conference apps, there are numerous event technology applications that can increase audience engagement. E.g. a photo booth, this is a great way to increase attendee engagement. Along with the digital pics if users get a printed copy of their pictures they will no doubt share it on their social media pages. Ask them to use your hashtag to promote your event. These things will event increase the footfall to your booth. Apart from the attendees, you can use technology to simplify the process for your teams too. Event organizer app can help your marketing team can schedule the content that you want to publish such as press releases, blog posts, tweets, videos, images, on any social platform. Use the built-in analytics of these platforms to better understand online engagement. Even after the event is over make sure you update the attendees about what went on and how successful it was. 14. Host Q&A and Surveys Because of their transparency and direct engagement, Hosting surveys and QA before, during and after the events will increase brand awareness and engagement. You can even promote these on social media. This will also give a chance to the attendees to ask questions directly from your team. To keep a tab on how your team handled the interactions you take feedback like “ Was the session informative and helpful?” This can help you improve future engagements if there is anything that the attendees felt missing. 15. Send Thank You Emails Thanking the sponsors, clients, customers and speakers for attending the event is important. You can do it via thank you emails after the event is over. You can even send personalised emails to the ones you engaged and interacted with. Be genuine, talk directly and tell them how great it was meeting them and ask for future meets. Post it on social media and thank everyone for attending. This will help continue the conversation after the event to increase engagement and strengthen connections. You can even use the event engagement app for this by sending push-notifications or in-app alerts conveying the same. Conclusion These are hundreds of ways which can help you increase audience engagement. Interesting booths, merchandise, pools, surveys, social media engagement, best conference apps, there are so many things that you can do. These innovative actions not only increase the footfall during events but also help build customer relationships. You get more prospects and leads to work on after the events. These 15 tips will no doubt increase audience engagement and help you organise an epic event experience for everyone.