No matter what kind of social or corporate event you’re preparing for, contests are almost always a good way of getting attendees to interact and become more immersed in the experience. The thing is, plenty of other events have contests now, so it takes a little creativity to impress attendees.
But have no fear, we’ve been in event planning in NY and NJ for a long time and we’ve designed and seen plenty of contests, so read on to get some ideas for your own event contest and for some tips on how to go about planning and executing it.
Fold photo and video into the equation.
Let’s face it, setting up a wheel for attendees to spin for the chance to win a gift card just won’t cut it anymore, and one way to spice your event contests up is to bring photos and videos into the mix.
One option is to design a photo contest in which attendees snap shots throughout the event and share them. Then, you can select the best ones at the end or you can take it a step further and make it so only the photos that best connect with the event’s theme or those with the best captions are awarded.
You can also have stations where attendees can video themselves saying what they like best about their experience or how it can be improved, or passing on ideas or answers. Then, at the end of the event, you can select the best of the best and play them so that the rest of the audience can vote for their favorites.
On top of getting attendees to interact, these kinds of contests will also result in an abundance of photos and/or videos which you can share and use to promote future events.
Clue them in early.
Another way to make your event contests a little more exciting is to start passing out clues to attendees prior to the event to start building some anticipation, rendering them a little more satisfying once they officially begin.
You can hand out hints pertaining to what the secret prize is or information or passwords which will help the team that finds or deciphers them. Then, let attendees know where to go next, and you can drop another clue there.
The point is, building some anticipation for your contest beforehand will only help to make attendees more excited and engaged once it begins, and for more on building excitement leading up to your events, check out this post, 3 Tips for Getting People Fired up for Your Next Event.
Make sure everything ties back to your event.
As longtime NY / NJ event planners, take it from us, it’s imperative that every aspect of your event tie back in with the central mission or theme, and that doesn’t change when it comes to any contests you’re trying to put together.
You don’t want attendees confused as to how the contest connects to the event they’re at, so make sure the contest and all the prizes, whether it’s a T-shirt, smartphone accessory, etc., connect to your event in some way.
The bottom line is, whether it’s a social event or a corporate conference, a contest can be a great way to get attendees to mix and mingle and to become more engaged. It’s just that, nowadays, just any old contest won’t do. It’s up to you to prepare one that your attendees will truly appreciate. We hope these tips help to get you pointed in the right direction.
About Us: Absolute Events by Corrine is a full-service meeting & event planning company in New Jersey. Whether they’re corporate or social, destination or local, Absolute Events by Corrine does it all so that our clients can be guests at their own events.