Any business professional is intimately familiar with the concept of the customer journey at a corporate event. It's a mainstay of your business strategy and crucial to delivering the best possible experience for your customers.
With the rapid digitalisation of business and evolving consumer behaviours, it's become more important than ever to invest in the customer experience. Understanding the way customers interact with your business across all platforms enables you to meet them at their level and nurture the relationship in the way it needs. Navigating the customer journey has long been a major talking point in the business world, and often a staple on the agenda of corporate events.
Just as business leaders need to be paying close attention to their customer journey, event professionals should be approaching their meetings and events with a holistic view of the delegate journey in order to create truly memorable moments at their corporate events.
In this article, we'll examine what it takes to put the delegate journey at the forefront of your corporate event strategy.
Your delegates have a journey ahead of them - can you make sure all roads lead to you?
Establishing your CORPORATE EVENT touch points
Your corporate event delegate journey is measured in touch points. These are small moments of truth wherein a delegate interacts at your event, and they can make or break their overall experience at a corporate event.
Your corporate event touch points are more than just a point of contact or sale. Food and beverage, accommodation, transport, presentation, content, corporate event signage and technology just begin to scrape the surface of the touch points that make up the delegate journey.
In thinking about the touch points for your corporate event, organise them in approximate chronological order. You should be able to categorise pre-event, on-site and post-event touch points fairly easily. From there, attribute a value to each one. It's important to consider value as it relates to:
- The delegate: Does this touch point enhance the delegate experience at your corporate event, or is it largely functional? Should you focus on minimising disruption or maximising impact?
- Your organisation: Is this touch an opportunity to drive strategic objectives at your corporate event? Can you weave stronger messaging into it? Can you use technology to collect valuable data?
- External stakeholders (eg. sponsors): Does this touch point reflect on any particular sponsors? Do we have any obligations to stakeholders we need to meet at certain touch points, such as visibility or experience?
Mapping your Corporate Event delegate journey with touch point data
Ensure your understanding of the value of touch points and how they fit into the delegate journey at your corporate event is accurate, by reinforcing your assumptions with real data.
Post-event surveys are the most common way of doing this. By asking your delegates to rate and comment on various touch points throughout the corporate event, you can better understand both how valuable the touch point is and whether or not it's meeting its expectations. Averaging and mapping the general sentiment towards various touch points lets you see what needs greater investment or refining in future corporate events and which changes are most likely to have the biggest impact. Segmenting these results according to your delegate personas also helps you understand which of your audiences are being serviced the most (or least) by your event.
Corporate event technology can put a valuable touch point right in your delegate's palm.
In your first year, you may not have access to delegate data regarding the value of touch points, so it's important to pay particular attention to the way your expectations measure up to reality.
Corporate event technology is a highly valuable investment in many cases, allowing you to track and manipulate touch point performance in real time. Learn more about the power of event technology in our blog post, "Has tech taken the life out of corporate events?".
Weaving consistent messaging across touch points
With a clear vision of your delegate journey, it's often easier to disseminate a central theme across your touch points.
Break down what your corporate event's theme means to each delegate segment. Then, bearing these multiple perspectives in mind, consider how each touch point communicates and contributes to the central theme. In your most valuable touch points, such as presentations and sessions, this is fairly straightforward - boiling down the content itself. Meanwhile, pre-event marketing or on-site check-in may require more creative ideation to ensure the event message is reinforced at every available opportunity.
Are your delegates getting the message at your corporate event?
5 key considerations for your delegate journey at your corporate event
Ask yourself these key questions when mapping the delegate journey for your next event.
1. Does each touch point motivate the desired action at your corporate event?
Your touch points should wow your delegates - but without the right actions being taken in return, your efforts are for nought. Each touch must be designed with clear intent. It should be obvious what actions your delegate should take next, not just because you want them to but because they feel genuinely compelled.
2. Have I looked at the whole picture for my corporate event?
Your delegate journey must take into account pre- and post-event communications. A delegate's experience with your event is not limited to what happens on-site or during event hours, but also before, after and in the gaps between sessions. To deliver a truly memorable experience, you must be engaging delegates and optimising experiences at every opportunity.
3. Have I considered more than one perspective?
Think of your delegates as people wherever possible. Accommodating for different perspectives, attitudes, behaviours and motivations allows you to identify shortcomings in your event strategy and address them to ensure all delegate segments' needs are met.
4. Do the touch points make an impact ?
To be truly successful, your event must be memorable. This means your touch points shouldn't only be functional, but disrupt the ordinary. Could you streamline check-in so efficiently that delegates hardly have time to blink before they're through the conference doors? Can you use the latest technology to immerse and inspire?
5. Are you ending on the right note?
Finally, what feeling do you want your delegates to walk away with? It's vital you leave a lasting impression on your delegates, so your post-event touch points need to reinforce key messages and moments clearly and effectively.
Developing a delegate journey is about more than just understanding where delegates will go and what they'll do - it's about meeting them on a personal level to deliver emotional and inspiring moments of truth throughout your event. It's time to start pushing the limits of what your events can achieve - reach out to the cievents team today to discuss your delegate experience.