When you run your own networking event, there is a huge list of requirements you must provide to encourage people to share knowledge and have conversations.
However, a stimulating and engaging atmosphere can only be achieved if your guests are feeling positive.
This is where the human side comes in. The world is running at a mind-boggling fast pace, and with more and more digital experiences, physical events need to be executed perfectly for the best result.
At the end of the day, your goal is to bring people together and create a positive experience and good impressions, so they build trust with you and view you as a leader in your field.
And so, truly knowing your audience is essential – the event is for them not you.
Luckily, there is one thing that can bring all of this together: the atmosphere you create. And this is the one thing you have complete control over.
Here are 5 tips to create the perfect atmosphere for your event and win over your guests.
Choosing the perfect venue in the right location is incredibly important.
Depending on the type of event you’re holding, the venue should be chosen accordingly, and this will enhance the atmosphere in itself.
For instance, if you’re holding an informal networking event where people will be standing at tall tables, having finger food – you’ll want an open space where people can move around freely without feeling crammed.
In addition, it’s a good idea to have your venue close by to transport links and have enough parking space for the projected number of guests, so there is no room for frustration once they arrive.
Be Welcoming and Friendly
You only get one chance to make a first impression.
So they’re a pretty big deal. This is why you need to make it your priority to greet and welcome each and every guest with a genuine, warm welcome.
For networking events that are more formal, consider having a team leader at the reception, or you could perhaps hire a hostess (if you have the budget).
Either way, every guest should be welcomed by someone friendly and who knows all about the venue facilities.
As a rule of thumb, there should be 1 host to every 50 guests. But bear in mind extra sessions such as workshops where extra support may be required.
It’s also worth noting here that your team should be dressed according to the type of event you are hosting; they’re representing your brand, after all.
Set the tone with lighting
I imagine you’ve spent a lot of time and effort in making your event look amazing, from decor to marketing materials.
And you’ll want to continue making a dramatic first impression by getting the lighting right; lighting has a huge effect on mood.
If you’re not sure where to begin, lighting professionals can help transform your venue to create the atmosphere you desire through different colours and intensities of light.
From LED uplights to colour washes, there are endless lighting techniques you can implement to set the perfect tone.
Furthermore, if you’re going to be using a projector, you’ll need to set the light just right so there’s a clear enough view for guests to be able to take notes and see the information clearly.
On the other hand, if you’re selling a product and have a new stand to showcase a launch you could keep that area of the venue illuminated whilst the overall lights are slightly dimmed.
Create Ambience With Music
People assume music’s not a big deal, and will just pick out a few random chill-out albums without giving it much thought.
But the truth is, the choice of music does matter and sets the rhythm of your event atmosphere, which can affect how your guests feel. Listening to music creates emotions, and can increase the amount of dopamine (the “happy” neurotransmitter) in the brain.
Hence, you can directly influence the way your guests feel just by energising the atmosphere, or setting a relaxed mood with the right music choice.
Food and Drink
When thinking about what food and drink to supply at your event, it will be dependent on the overall theme.
For corporate affairs, you may want a sit down, 3 course meal. Whereas for informal, chatty events, you may want finger food and nibbles instead.
Not only that, you will need to supply food and drinks suitable for all tastes and requirements of those attending.
To get a better idea, you could request information for any special dietary requirements on the event registration forms prior to the event so you can sharpen your decision making when designing your menu.
Moreover, the last thing you want is to run out of food or beverages, so make sure you double check numbers. Sounds obvious, but you’d be surprised how often this happens!
Planning an event is more than just taking care of logistics and communication.
It’s paramount to create the perfect atmosphere to leave a positive, lasting impression on all of your guests. From music to lighting and even the food you choose, it all plays a part in influencing the mood of your guests and setting the tone for your brand.
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On a related note, if you would like to get more people to your events, please check our video below