Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

Rediscovering the 'WHY' of meetings and conferences

This presentation will encourage events professionals, both client-side and agency, to take a step back and think smarter about the events they deliver, the value they add, and the reason they do what they do. The what, how and when are in safe hands – now it’s time to think about the ‘why.’

  • Login to see the comments

Rediscovering the 'WHY' of meetings and conferences

  1. 1. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences. I N N O V A T E M O T I V A T E A C T I V A T E Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences
  2. 2. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency With budgets under ever-increasing scrutiny… …the demand for differentiation growing stronger by the day… …the competition for audience share is at an all-time high… … which means event professions are under more pressure than ever before. It’s no wonder then that many of us find ourselves caught up in the day-to-day deliverables making decisions for arbitrary, rather than strategic, reasons, and focusing on deadlines instead of objectives. Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences
  3. 3. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences Take for example ComicCon in San Diego, the world’s largest gathering of comic, sci-fi and horror enthusiasts. People come because they love the genre. The comics. The movies. The TV shows. Autographs. Cosplay. But no-one comes because they love events. The event exists because they love something more important. I see statements like this all the time, that people love events. But people don’t love events. We are enthusiastic about events. We love what events help us achieve. You have to remember that events are just a tool, a platform, to help achieve the clients objectives.
  4. 4. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency There are NINE simple lessons Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences
  5. 5. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences We, as an industry, need to remind ourselves of the most important word in our vocabulary – WHY. We need to be kids again, go back to the time when we always asked questions. Because the Why is the premise behind everything. It informs every decision we make. Once you know the answer then you can create an event that focuses towards that. The Event is the where & when The Experience is the how & what But the Engagement is the Why Lesson 1: Always ask ‘why’…
  6. 6. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences We’ve established that why is the first important lesson. It’s the reason your event exists. We have to start from a perspective that understands the reasons for the event, because that piece of insight determines the whole strategic outlook. To have a strategy is to have an informed plan of action. Which means understanding the reasons as to why you are doing something specific. To gain this unique point- of-view, you have to base it on an understanding of human/brand behavior. • What emotions do they need to feel? • What opinions do they need to form? • What facts do they need to remember? • What actions do they need to take? Lesson 2: Think strategically…
  7. 7. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences Mini Missions was an event where we took strategic insight and stopped thinking of test drives in the tradition sense. The insight behind the campaign was to create memorable branded moments, rather than traditional test drives, to increase affinity and brand advocacy specifically within 18 – 25 year olds. We turned the traditional thinking on its head and created Mini Missions. A MINI ambassador programme which recruited ambassadors from 20 Universities across Britain, who then used their knowledge of the target age range to get participants to take part in test drives.
  8. 8. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences Engagement should not just happen during the event. Engagement is the whole event from pre through to post. There is a strong need to make sure that you are covering all these areas. At GPJ we develop a detailed timeline of the event experience, that starts well before the event and ends long after the experience. We do this because we think of it as a campaign. We don’t just think of what the attendees will be doing throughout the event, but also their emotions, how they view the brand, and their thoughts and feelings from certain pieces of content. Lesson 3: Be more than an event…
  9. 9. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences When the radio was invented broadcasters had to scrabble around to find sufficient ‘content’ to fill the airwaves. They were filling space with anything they could find, but that’s not how it should be. Think of the storyteller. He has a point he wants to make. He has a voice and he wants to reach people, so he plots out his story. He then chooses the necessary medium, be it a book, short story, play, TV show, Documentary, film, or a radio play. He finds the specific medium that would allow the story to be told in the best way. It isn’t about picking something to fill a gap, but about expanding the storytelling across all mediums. Creating something that extends the whole experience. Lesson 4: Tell stories…
  10. 10. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences You have to think about the cost of all those executives being in the room. How much does it cost to get them there? How much to put them up? How much cost to the rest of the business for them to be away from their desk? You need to establish what the real costs is for each attendee, because you have an obligation to justify their time being there and create an event that provides relevant content. If you’re not listening to them, you’re wasting your time and theirs. Lesson 5: Learn to listen
  11. 11. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences Lady Gaga shows a strong understand on this lesson. She customises her concerts set list based on the listening habits of her fans in a particular location by unitising Spotify’s analytics tool. This means the performance is a unique experience for all attending, as well as the fact her audience get to hear their favourite songs. Just from listening to her fans, she has been able to create a personal experience that they will remember and engage with.
  12. 12. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency The Segway was a brilliant invention, but what was its reason for being? I’ve heard it described as a solution in search of a problem. This is the risk of trying to be an inventor. Fraught with risk. Littered with failure. But to paraphrase Edison, there are a million ways to fail. Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences Look at Apple they are renowned as innovators, not inventors. They didn’t invent the MP3 player, or the laptop, touchscreen, smartphone, tablet, video streaming, or even the smartwatch. They just perfected things that already exist. They saw a problem to solve and solved it. After asking the questions why, you need to established the purpose of the event and what problems it will help solve. Lesson 6: Solve problems…
  13. 13. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency 13Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences Think of the objectives as the strategy. As lesson 4 said it is about finding solutions that enable the story to be told in the most effective way. I recently did a panel where we were talking about event technology. Even after discussing the need to pick technology that fits with, and enhances, your event, the top question was still ‘what’s the best technology for events with smaller budgets’. Use of technology needs to solve a problem or enhance the experience. What’s the best technology out there in your opinion for events with much smaller budgets? Lesson 7: Think ‘solutions’…
  14. 14. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency 14Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences An example of a company who understand the importance of using technology to enhance their attendees experience is Disney. The Disney’s MagicBands are RFID wristbands, at the heart of the MyMagic+ collection of services. They link to a cloud-based service that lets people enter the park, buy lunch and even unlock their hotel room. Families will be able to enjoy Disney without the constant reminder that the magic comes at a price. But the cash flow aspect is only one aspect of Disney’s new service. When you begin to consider the potential of wearing a wireless ID around your wrist, all sorts of natural, customized interactions will become possible. Imagine a child meeting Mickey Mouse, and after sharing a warm hug, Mickey actually wishing them a happy birthday by name. There’s a digital handshake going on here, of course, but it’s totally invisible to the kids. Disney have implemented technology to extend the whole magical experience and allow their visitors to have a seamless, stress-free time whilst in their park. They thought about creating a solution.
  15. 15. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences An example of not prejudging is Cisco Live, where one of the competitions for attendees involved Lego. Lego pieces were dotted around the World of Solutions at sponsors stands, participants had to go around collecting the different Lego pieces before designing and building their own interpretations of the Cisco Live event. The attendees loved this and were actively sharing on social media. We keep talking about how times have changed. That because of technology we’ve lost interaction on public transport. That people don’t talk any more. But that isn’t true – we’ve been ignoring each other long before wifi was installed on trains. Which is why you can’t prejudge your guests or make assumptions. Knowing who your audience is, and really understanding their expectations is vital. Lesson 8: Don’t prejudge…
  16. 16. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences You can’t be passive You need to be engaged Talking to attendees, creating conversations, listening You need to make sure you are using the same channels that your attendees are on Make sure the content is relevant to your audience Make sure the content is representative of your objectives, and clients brand values Lesson 9: Get social…
  17. 17. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences
  18. 18. Copyright © 2015 George P. Johnson. All Rights Reserved. A Project: WorldWide Agency Rediscovering the ‘WHY’ of meetings and conferences I N N O V A T E M O T I V A T E A C T I V A T E

×