In the whirlwind of 2023, events made a comeback, bringing with them a sense of vibrancy and reconnection. As we bid farewell to a year filled with bustling activities, successes, and the revival of in-person gatherings, it's time to reflect on some less-explored trends. I'm here to unravel the subtleties that often escape the spotlight.
Continue reading as I unveil my top 7 observations that left a lasting impact on the events of 2023, shedding light on insights often hidden from the spotlight.
1. Challenges with Venue RFP (Request For Proposal) Responses
Selecting the perfect venue is more than a choice; it's an experience we meticulously craft for our clients. While they revel in the thrill of their chosen location, behind the scenes, we navigate an evolving challenge—ensuring swift and comprehensive responses from potential venues.
What once flowed seamlessly in negotiations now encounters newfound resistance, demanding enhanced negotiation skills and a profound understanding of what truly makes a win-win scenario. As an experienced planner, navigating this intricate terrain has become a cornerstone of success that has created thousands of dollars in savings combined with the confidence that they are contractually protected.
2. Rising Costs of In-House AV Services:
In the realm of event planning, while our clients savor the seamless execution of their events, the orchestration of in-house AV services is undergoing a less harmonious transformation. The disappearance of pricing lists and the rise of overpriced proposals, along with substantial service fees, create a jarring element in event planning. Yet, fear not, for in navigating these turbulent AV waters, I've uncovered a golden key—third-party AV vendors. Picture this: your event, a masterpiece of audio and visual artistry. When clients entrust us with their event, they're not just getting meticulous planning; they're gaining access to a secret weapon—our partnership with Lifted AV Productions.
In the realm of in-house AV, hotels often pitch their providers, complete with equipment rental costs, taxes, and service charges. And, what's usually omitted—the producer on the day of the event! With Lifted AV, our clients experience more than just an AV provider; they gain a dedicated resource committed to their vision and the success of the event. Picture a seamless process, professional AV expertise, and an AV team commitment to excellence that rivals Be Bright Events.
Every event sees the in-house AV company submitting proposals, and without fail, Lifted AV emerges as the more affordable option. Even when factoring in travel and lodging expenses, our clients consistently save thousands, receiving not just cost savings but an elevated AV experience that resonates long after the event concludes.
3. Internet and Power Drop Fees Negotiations
Navigating the landscape of internet and power drop fees, a relentless tune of rising costs has become a crucial aspect of event planning. Clients, faced with limited options and often required to use the hotel for these services, find themselves vulnerable to significantly inflated price tags. Here's where a professional planner, with proven negotiation tactics and skills comes into play. I'm proud to share that with every.single.event we planned in 2023, we successfully negotiated these rates down by almost 50%.
4. Social Media's Impact on Ticket Sales
In the realm of event success, one area stands out where our clients wield absolute control—their social media strategy. Witnessing the remarkable success of a client in 2022, we advocated this approach as an organic marketing success strategy for all of our clients.
Tapping into the potential of organic social media, especially through direct messages, emerges as a transformative force in boosting ticket sales. The personal touch of extending invitations to potential attendees has yielded remarkable results, particularly in the early stages of ticket sales (when minimal information is even provided on the registration page).
Not only does this elevate the quality and quantity of attendees, this approach also infuses an undeniable energy into the overall event atmosphere, creating an immersive and engaging experience for everyone involved. And, for those running enrollment events, it also significantly contributes to increased enrollment numbers because our clients are selling to a qualified and genuinely interested audience.
5. Strategic Investment in Videography
In 2023, clients are investing big in the cinematic experience of videography, recognizing it as a valuable long-term asset. While this adds to the overall event budget, it's more than an expense—it's an enduring investment.
B-roll footage, live testimonials, and promotional materials, expertly crafted through videography, serve as powerful social proof. Beyond capturing the essence of the event, it extends the shelf life, contributing to future event promotions and marketing initiatives.
This strategic decision ensures a lasting impact, creating content for reels, stories, and social media that continues to resonate and elevate the event's narrative. Through strategic pre-planning, custom-crafted testimonial questions, and a clear vision of post-event deliverables, the process becomes more than capturing moments—it's about creating a visual legacy that resonates long after the event.
6. Elevating the Attendee Experience: Crafting Memories, Not Just Events
The heartbeat of event planning is evolving, and it's rhythmic with the commitment to immersive experiences. It's not just about hosting events; it's about creating memories that echo in the hearts of attendees. The shift reflects an understanding that events go beyond functions—they're emotional journeys.
7. Mobile Technology Reshaping Event Experiences
In the spotlight of trends is the increase in mobile technology adoption. I noticed a significant uptick in clients embracing event apps that not only facilitate streamlined operations and also empower attendees with all the necessary information at their fingertips. It's not just about efficiency; it's about connectivity.
Beyond operational efficiency, the true essence lies in enhancing attendee satisfaction and overall experience. Providing attendees with comprehensive information, such as guest speaker bios, event agendas, and nearby restaurant suggestions, fosters a seamless and enriched event journey. The convenience of ordering branded merchandise, easy icebreakers, resource downloads, and an attendee roster for social connections amplifies the overall satisfaction. This not only adds value but also brings about cost savings (on printed material) and contributes to a reduced environmental impact.
As you explore the plethora of trends in event planning, it's crucial to recognize that amidst the commonly discussed, lie the less-explored nuances that truly shape the success of an event. Dozens of trends abound, each with its own narrative and impact, yet these insights, often hidden from the spotlight, add an extra layer of proficiency to your event strategy.
While some observations may pose challenges, we, as experienced event planners, thrive in the face of complexity. Our expertise extends beyond crafting seamless events; it encompasses navigating the ever-changing landscape of trends, and ensuring your event stands out in a saturated market.
By having a professional event planner meticulously curate every detail or offering strategic guidance through our Event Brilliance Strategic Coaching program, you're poised for success.
Confidence becomes your ally as you step into your next event, armed with insights that truly make a difference.
Curious to learn more about our event and retreat planning services or our innovative coaching program?
Schedule a free consultation, and let's elevate your events to new heights together.