Here we are, two years after the pandemic hit, still navigating and trying to figure out how to keep employees and customers safe now that we are resuming in-person functions. Although the pandemic came in strong and kept us socially distanced for some time, it’s impossible to remain this way now that the pandemic has subsided because people are demographically and behaviorally social beings. People want to interact and have fun, even while they work!
That’s why it’s super exciting that we can now plan and conduct business in person and attend networking events, trade shows, conferences, trainings, meetings and so on. However, things will be different and here are a few things to keep in mind when planning your next event:
Reduce Event Attendee Size
Big events are your thing? Well, one thing you must consider is the amount of attendees for your next event, to be safe it is best to have small gatherings and host multiple events. However, you can have an unlimited number of attendees by hosting a hybrid event, unlimited number of people logged on to you virtual platform and a limited number of in-person attendees for safety precautions. Another inexpensive option, is to host multiple events online, this way you don’t have to pay for a venue, allows more one-on-one time with the audience and provides downtime for networking opportunities.
Update Sanitation Policies
Being nervous about hosting your first event is normal, but adding on concerns about sanitary measures while a pandemic is subsiding is a bit scary! So, make sure you plan ahead and think through your event sanitation policies such as Covid-related questionnaires when attendees arrive, scanning temperature at check-ins and offering masks, placing sanitation stations, offering gloves and taking extra precautions by having meals individually boxed, if the event includes lunch or dinner. All of these measures will give your attendees a peace of mind, allowing them to focus and enjoy your event!
Visuals Are Essential
Creating stellar visuals are great for guiding people towards your exhibiting display and information booths. You want to ensure your displays are eye-catching and informative, this will help you look more professional and get you all the attention you can get at your next event. Some attendees may be reluctant to linger at booths and attend event parties, however interactive designs on your tents, table cloths, banners, flags and retractable banners will pull them in!
Bright and eye-catching displays invite the attendee to step inside and check out the display and high-quality designs. The layout should be memorable and stay with the visitors even after they return home. The booth should have aesthetics that highlight the personality of the brand.
We are still not in the clear and there is still a possibility that Covid-19 could resurge in the fall or another pandemic may strike. It’s important to think through how these situations will be handled. Last minute options would be to host small groups safely, such as the exhibit hall with only a small amount of attendees, enforcing masks and marking seats and locations where to stand to enforce social distancing. If you have enough time, then you can also offer the option of the attendees joining your virtual event. Adapting to the new needs and safety of your attendees is important for a successful convention.
People Will Be Excited!
In recent surveys, of an estimated 1,000 adults in the United States, about 83% wish to return to in-person meetings and events. This means that when you host your event, your attendees will be so excited to interact and network with other attendees. You should tap into that emotion and create a party-like atmosphere that everyone will enjoy. Always keep in mind that safety comes first and seek venues with large space and set seating charts to mark seats six feet apart.
One thing is certain, Covid-19 taught us that change is inevitable and improvising is key for staying afloat in any situation. Therefore, it’s important to have different plans in place in case you need to make changes on the fly and make sure you remain flexible. Stay professional and on task by communicating with your registrants to keep them informed and to provide reassurance. Ultimately, how well your company adapts to changes will dictate how successful your events will be!