More and more often we are working with clients and hearing about companies hosting their own events. These can be a strain to plan and coordinate, but the payoff can be huge. Here are some of the reasons you may consider having your organization host an event:
First, let me define the type of corporate event I’m referring to because that term can encompass a number of meanings. I’m discussing an event that an individual organization would host at a hotel/conference center to invite their clients and prospects. These functions could be based around things like a product launch or customer appreciation.
Building Relationships with Clients
No matter how you frame the event, this is always the underlying focus. The beauty of these events is that it offers plenty of time to be more relaxed and get to know the people better that you’re doing business with. You can also meet and introduce your connections to those up and down the line from you. For instance a salesperson can introduce their internal staff and directors that the client may know of but haven’t met in person.
Additionally, your team will have the opportunity through conversation to learn more about your client’s business and how they’re utilizing your products/services. This can help identify additional ways you can be of benefit to them with your current offering, or even offer some R&D into what new options could be beneficial for your company.
Total Brand Immersion
You’ll have the opportunity to take over the venue. It isn’t uncommon to do signage and displays outside, in the lobby, in the hallways, in the banquet rooms, wherever people will be. A stage with a branded podium, logo gobos shining down, maybe a step and repeat brandwall in the room for photos. Monitors all around the building looping content. You can even add a gift-bag in a hotel room if applicable. This is the best chance to drive home all of your corporate branding and messaging so that an attending client will not, and can not, forget.
Invite only who you want. Compared to trade shows and more generic opportunities that can at times bog down time with those that aren’t your target consumer, all of your effort at these events can be focused into the people that matter. This also makes these perfect for introducing new products and services as you’ll have those you want to see it right there for demonstrations, explanations and answering questions.
It isn’t uncommon for our clients to have big annual industry shows in Las Vegas (this is true for us as well), but what if you’re an east coast company dealing primarily with east coast clients? You could be even more localized serving clients in a single east coast city. This makes flying across the country an obstacle to success. You can host your event in an area that is most convenient for your attendees and company itself to increase the potential for participation. Hosting in your company’s city also allows for facility tours to further show how your operation functions.
Take The Lead
Events like these give your client the impression that your organization is a major player in the industry. This is especially true when you bring in speakers and make it, at least in part, educational as well. This says that you’re looking to invest in educating to further the industry as a whole. Regardless, they may not know the specifics, but people recognize the amount of effort and money involved in these events and will respect that you’ve done this for them.
To have a successful event be sure to pick experienced vendors and event planners to work with and allow plenty of time for planning. This will help to avoid surprises and have backup plans in place. Also be sure to get buy-in from all of the key players in the company. It will more than likely add to some stress as you’ll have “too many cooks in the kitchen” but it will allow access to the necessary resources and personnel to succeed.
These corporate events are a great way to maximize budget dollars and control. You can create lasting relationships with clients and teach them all about you (the company) and you (the person). If you’re considering hosting an event in future, feel free to contact us to learn how we can help!