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Keys to Meetings & Events your Attendees will Rave About

August 23, 2018

Whether you’re planning a destination meeting or a small event, creating a memorable experience for your guests is extremely important. As a meeting planner, you’re constantly striving to leave a positive impact on event attendees, often with the vision of guests begging for the event to never end. To help with the planning of successful future events, that are sure to impress, we’ve listed the following keys to meetings and events your attendees will rave about:

5 keys sure to impress attendees at your next meeting

Set the tone – Consider sending information about the destination, meeting itinerary and scheduled group events to attendees ahead of time. Add an element of surprise packaging it in a way that represents the destination or event theme.  For example, groups heading to Newport Beach, CA may enjoy flip-flops with the schedule printed on the bottom of each sandal. Or if your planning a private yacht event or harbor activity, a captain’s hat with the program tucked inside could be a clever pre-event gift.

Step outside the box – Using the expected event decorations, entertainment and spaces can be boring. Your guests deserve to see something fresh and unique, setting your event apart from the norm. Ditch tradition and strive for something new.  Try mixing up floral centerpieces with destination specific items such as succulents, shells, palm fronds, or eucalyptus branches.  Opt for a tablescape of framed photos or get even more creative and use books as the focal point. Stacking great literary works or books with titles indicative of your theme can be a great conversation starter.

Incorporate the element of surprise – Nothing makes an event more exciting than walking into a venue, and being wowed by the ambiance.  Combining high impact visuals with sound and scent can completely transform a space, turning the ordinary into the extraordinary.  Taking the time to walk through the event as an attendee and envision what guests expect to see will help you take things beyond the usual.  Can uplighting be synced to music changing with the rhythm? Can you create an unexpected reveal signaling a transition between courses?  Can the entrance be draped behind doors to give the effect of a door within a door and a step into a different dimension?

Give attendees an event to remember

Success is in the details – From centerpieces and décor, to menu and lighting, planning a memorable program depends on details, large and small. Take the time to account for each entertainment and décor detail, providing unique touches along the way. Weave the program theme into every aspect starting with a save-the-date. Make certain every item is on brand or at least on theme, including invitations, programs, and parting gifts.  Success is in the details, so get detailed.  Attendees will appreciate the extra thought and effort that went into the event just for them!

Parting gifts – Provide your group with a parting gift that will remind them of their experience. One way to do this is through destination themed gifts. Consider locally grown or produced delicacies, which can be consumed on-site or packed to savor once home.  Prefer a non-perishable gift? Send each person home with a flash drive filled with group photos.

The most enjoyable events are formed using creative design and thoughtful execution. It’s not the expense or the grandeur that matters, but the attention to detail and effort put forth to achieve the wow factor. When attendees feel honored, you can safely say you’ve created a successful, memorable program.

A great way to make your guests feel extra special is by holding your program in the engaging coastal community of Newport Beach, California.   With its rare combination of upscale and affordable, Newport Beach offers corporate group meetings and events unforgettable experiences. When you’re ready to begin organizing your next group meeting, contact the staff at Visit Newport Beach, the destination marketing organization for Newport Beach, CA. Visit Newport Beach opens the doors to this Pacific paradise with destination expertise, customized site visits, strong partnerships with valuable resources.

Written by Visit Newport Beach Meetings

As a not-for-profit Destination Marketing Organization (DMO), Visit Newport Beach provides destination expertise, customized site visits, strong partnerships and resources tailored specifically to the needs of meeting planners and their clients.

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