Events Council Blog

Seven Questions for Better Organisation Engagement

May 10, 2018

The Events Industry Council brings together the leaders from our 30+ member organisations each year to discuss the key initiatives of the Council, and also to discuss the state of the industry and what topics are most pressing for each of the organisations. In 2017, we released the top five trends that were shaping the industry. A few of these remain top of mind in 2018, particularly safety and security.

During this year’s discussion, events industry leaders shared a laser-focus on demonstrating relevance of their organisation as a way of increasing engagement. In this day and age where we are all competing for our members and participants attention, time and money, it’s critical to keep them engaged through meaningful participation

Some of the ways of demonstrating relevance shared at the meeting included:

  • Repositioning the organisation as a thought leader
  • Helping members maximize revenue
  • Evolving membership models
  • Engaging with new audiences to share content
  • Providing resources on time-sensitive issues, such as new data regulations
  • Expanding markets through regional programmes
  • Providing platforms for virtual connections and continuing dialogue between members

Here are a few key questions you can ask yourself as you think about increasing engagement with your own organisation:

  • How is your organisation and/or event remaining relevant in today’s ever changing world?

    For instance, have you evaluated your event format in the last 2–5 years or does it remain the same? It is always good to consider new and dynamic ways to keep your event fresh and fun to surprise your participants and keep them coming back.

  • What is your value proposition and are you remaining true to it in order to draw your audience in?

    When was the last time you had a pulse check with your members or participants about the value they are receiving from your organisation? It may be time to think about evaluating your value proposition and getting input from your members or participants on whether or not you are meeting their needs and how effectively those needs are being met.

  • How are your organisation’s offerings and/or event differentiated from the competition?

    Think about doing competitive research on the top events you know your participants attend and looking at how your pricing, event offerings and overall value stacks up.

  • How can we stress the value of belonging and being involved versus just having a membership?

    What are those things about your organisation that get your members to renew year after year? Make sure you remind them of those things and keep them involved. It is also important to consider what different segments of your membership may need – whether it is career stage, geographic location or specialty within the field – and ensure you are communicating what is most important to them.

  • How can we encourage participation beyond an event throughout the year utilizing online communities and social media?

    Have you thought about utilizing that expensive event app beyond the event? That is one way, but you can also launch a regular e-mail campaign between events featuring content and highlights or hold regular Twitter chats and share information via social media.

  • Do you understand what your members or participants pain points and challenges are to be able to better address what they need?

    Whether you try to gather information through an online survey about what keeps them up at night, what their biggest career challenges are or hold focus groups via conference call, it’s important to understand what the majority of your participants are struggling with so you can be there to help.

  • Have we been sharing enough of our organisation’s information and best practices with our members?
    Sometimes we think we may be over sharing, but it’s important to toot our own horn and keep the drumbeat going. Participants need continual reminders that you are an industry resource, advocating for shared principles and championing shared values.  

There is no doubt that our inboxes, social media channels and news feeds makes it difficult to remain focused and engaged in every way. However, it’s important to ask yourself some of these key questions to ensure you are doing what you can to remain relevant to your key audiences and keep them engaged.