The Why’s and How’s of Attendance Tracking

October 26, 2018

If you’re a seasoned event planner, you likely have the “big stuff” down cold: the marketing, the speaker lineup, the venue booking, the sales facilitation. But, as they say, the devil is in the details, and neglecting just a few little things can make an attendee say “pass” when it comes time to register the following year. Therefore, here are a few details that, if done right, will make your event stand out from the rest.

Cellphones. These are more of an inevitability than a detail; everyone will have them. So while you don’t want your attendees buried in them all day long, you do need to ensure that, when they go to send an email or make a phone call, these things can be done quickly and easily. This means ensuring a strong, easily accessible WiFi connection—or, at the very least, sufficient cell reception—and ample charging stations.

Private break spaces. Seeing as it’s impossible to pull attendees entirely away from their day jobs and personal lives, providing quiet, discreet places for attendees to make calls and charge cell phones during breaks can make a huge difference in attendee satisfaction.

Signage. Sounds basic, but clear, visible signage is absolutely essential to help direct attendees not just to where certain sessions or exhibitors are, but to the restrooms and any available food (and coffee!).

Lighting. Again, sounds basic, but lighting (and music, or other ambient sounds) can really set the mood for an audience. Also, consider when and where attendees might want to take notes during the event, and make sure the lighting is high enough so that they can see to write.

Conference badges. We have written about this topic many times, but the upshot is: make sure that the name is the central focus; render the words in simple, large font so they are legible from a distance; and include salient (but not too many) details like where the attendee is from. The content of a badge can be a great way for attendees to start conversations!

Room Set-up. There are a number of things to consider when setting up a room, including speaker visibility and potential networking. Round tables and short rows can help to encourage attendee interaction, and, ideally, you want everyone to see the speaker, even if that means projecting a video feed of them onto large screens.

Staff. Last but definitely not least, staff play a hugely important role at your event. They are the face of your event and ambassadors for your brand. Make sure they can be easily identified by attendees, and that they are well informed about the nuances of the venue and schedule. And of course, always choose staff who are naturally welcoming and friendly!