For a few years now, we at Franchising Plus, have been wondering if there isn’t a better way to motivate, inspire and create change through company conferences. We spend so much money on treating our clients, suppliers and franchisees, but do we really get the value we are paying for and does this translate into real value for our franchisees? Are they going back to their stores with tools to improve their businesses?
In my search for an answer I came across a very interesting article by Nick Gold, MD of conferencing agency, Speakers Corner. This article on “Trends set to shape event management/marketing in 2016” resonated with me, because this is the way we have seen conferences changing for the better.
Gold says: “Delegates working in a fast-paced world recognise that time is precious. As such, they seek to understand what they will gain by putting their day-to-day workload on hold in order to attend an event. This means deepening the experiential aspects to demonstrate that an event is a conversation to be fully immersed in: delegates can expect to be taken on a journey and come out the other side with their usual thoughts and processes enhanced, or even changed.”
According to Gold; “If delegates have higher expectations for lasting impact, it follows that defining and measuring ‘success’ will become an ever more critical part of planning an event. Going forward, the initial planning stage of any event should be putting a stake in the ground about the ROI (Return on Investment) that will be generated from it. This will mean developing procedures and tools, with an amplified emphasis on post-event feedback and innovative ways of measuring ROI by harnessing technology.”
3. ‘Disruption’ will continue to have impact
Gold reminds us that: “Companies, sectors and industries are taking a step back to consider their value, how they will be affected, and how they themselves can be at the forefront of change.” Considering the importance of experiential conferencing, a starting point for this will be to address the traditional set up of ‘stage and audience’ by rather providing dynamic and interactive sessions.
4. Gender representation
Gold identifies a key shift with regards to gender representation at conferences, as it becomes more of a standard to have even numbers of women and men speaking on a wider range of topics that are gender-balanced.
While companies look for new and interesting ways to deliver their message, they will need to continue to show that they can deliver original creative and cost effective solutions.