No More Snoozers: Keep Attendees Awake, Alert, Engaged

There is nothing more energy-sucking than a boring presentation. We have all been at a seminar where the words on the screen start fading into one blob. You can’t concentrate on what the speaker is saying. You may even find yourself nodding to sleep.


It’s not just you: A new survey confirms meetings are putting people to sleep. One in three people reported falling asleep or feeling drowsy during a work meeting, according to the results of a survey the hotel company Hilton released today. In Verizon Conferencing’s “Meetings in America” study, 91% of meeting attendees admitted to daydreaming during meetings. Yikes! Talk about a snoozer.


Keeping people engaged, even when they’re sitting right in front of you, is one of the biggest challenges you face when running an event or leading a meeting.


How guilty are you of checking your phone or email? Have you been caught daydreaming? Have you ever zoned out?


Long events can be tough to bear. Sitting in those chairs and watching endless learning presentations can put your audience to sleep. That’s why it’s important to have strategies to reawaken the energy in your attendees.


Reasons You May Check Out During a Meeting?


  1. You just chowed down on a big meal and have a full belly.

  2. You are feeling warm and the temps are lulling you to sleep.

  3. You are overwhelmed and your mind has checked out.

  4. You are bored out of your mind with the presenter or the content they are sharing.


Sometimes that initial excitement will start to waver as attendees lose momentum. Below are some tips to stimulate your attendees.


  1. Taking breaks. Short breaks give attendees a chance to get up, go to the restroom, get a drink (caffeine anyone), and mingle. And most importantly it gives their minds a chance to reset. That way when the session starts back up they are focused and ready to learn.


  1. Dancing. Play music and encourage attendees to dance where they are at or even come on stage and dance. This is a great photo opportunity by the way to show how much your events are in future marketing. This is where an amazing event emcee comes into play.

Read our blog: Why an Event Emcee is a MUST HAVE and How to Hire One

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  1. Stretching. Getting the body moving is a great way to increase energy. Have some yoga or fitness instructors come on stage and demonstrate some moves This is a way to get attendees' blood circulating. This can be incorporated as a component in your event, or can be an activity happening on stage during scheduled breaks.


  1. Break Out sessions. Instead of passively sitting and watching a presentation, attendees get up, move to another table, and get interactive applying the material.

  2. Play a short game. Sometimes simple things like trivia or bingo are excellent ways to change the stage and energize attendees between presenters.

  3. Incorporate Q&As and hot seat sessions. This gets the audience involved and helps them personalize the learning.

  4. Have live polling during the event. This is simple in the virtual format, and when in person, you can incorporate it into your event app, or even pop a QR code up on the big screen driving people to an online polling site. This gets attendees involved as they share their two cents on the matter.

  5. Stick a healthy snack in the swag bag. This can boost the attendee's energy and pick them up until the next break.

  6. Encourage the event speakers to offer as much variety as possible in their presentations. The more mentally engaging the presentation is, the better audience members can pay attention. They can add video clips. They can be fun pictures. They can add a joke.


The firehose technique for events isn’t what people are looking for. Attendees appreciate events that have great content they can absorb along with a great experience that is fun, engaging, and keeps them awake.


Ready to Spark Engagement, Inspire Change, and Enrich Lives?


Isn’t it time you put an end to snooze-worthy meetings once and for all? Let Be Bright Events strategize, plan, and implement events your attendees will love!


Schedule a free strategy call!


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