By Cylie Svartoien
When you have a local repeat event with a consistent audience, it’s easy to get comfortable and rely on tactics that have worked before. However, if you want to keep your audience’s attention and attendance, it’s critical to revamp, refresh and rejuvenate your show.
Last week at the Heroes Luncheon in Tampa, we spruced up the atmosphere in a variety of ways. Already, we’ve received phenomenal feedback, and here are some of the key tactics we used. Apply them to your next repeat event, and watch your audience crave more!
Create Personal Moments on the Stage
It’s most common to have a “sage on the stage,” but variety on stage can be much more effective when you include interaction. For example, John Sykes and his son Chuck Sykes were on the stage yesterday and John rubbed his son’s head while joking about balding, to which the son quickly retorted.
Another way we created interaction and personal moments on the stage was with an interview set up, where scholarship recipients were asked a short series of questions about their future plans. They then had the opportunity to thank or talk with the scholarship creators, John and Chuck Sykes. The gratitude, energy and emotion was palpable in a room of 1500 people. You can create this in your event too – simply create moments of personal connection.
Revamp the Script
Again, with a repeat event, it’s tempting to have a repeat script. Too often we see monthly or yearly events have a ‘Fill in the Blank Script,’ where they merely update names, dates and announcements. Friends, updated dates and times can be sent through an email. Your audience is here to soak up your goodness, so don’t be stingy! Give it to them!
One of the most effective ways to do this is to revamp your script. Switch it up and watch the audience cling to your message. You can do this by adding in interactive moments, as previously mentioned. Also, leveraging well-done, touching or energizing video(s) can add variety to your lineup. Engage the audience or captivate them with an onstage personality that represents your organization’s voice.
Colors, Lighting and Movement
For a banquet event of over 1,700 people it’s important everyone feels as though they have a front row seat. As you can imagine, that strategy requires video screens that can be seen no matter your seating placement in the room to captivate the audience. On the other extreme, flashy isn’t always better, either. What you’re really going for is captivating and engaging your audience – so work towards using colors, lighting and movement effectively.
What we ended up using worked wonderfully! We had a set-up of 4 screens, with backlighting across the entire backline wall of the stage that changed colors to help evoke emotion and interest, depending on what was happening on stage. This kept our audience’s attention, which providing purpose to each movement.
Simple is good. Effective is better.
It’s simple to take a staple event and refresh it! Implement these tactics into your next repeat event, and watch your audience loyalty grow.
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