The meetings & events industry is currently undergoing a massive evolution, which has brought to surface many complex topics that all #eventprofs are thinking about. Last week, we hosted our first #twineTalks event. We created #twineTalks as a way to power peer to peer conversations within the industry about challenging and complex topics.
We know that talking to each other is a great way for our industry to harness collective intelligence and to explore, distill, and tackle these complex topics.
Our first #twineTalks session, tackled the hot topic of if and how events can lead to year-round, 365 engagement, that turn into lasting communities.
The word “community” has become the new “pivot” of 2021 and #eventprofs can’t look anywhere without seeing or hearing about the importance of turning event attendees into members of a year-round community. We are seeing many organizations experiment with different ways to keep attendees coming back to engage with their brands in hopes of making a long-term commitment. The power of community is clear - make people feel like they belong, and keep them loyal to your brand.
Approximately 40 #eventprofs gathered last week to discuss the feasibility of turning your event into one of many touchpoints with your attendees and to answer the broad question of: How Can Events Create Year Long Engagement?...and the discussion was rich, colourful and left us with lots to consider.
Here’s what we learned:
In one word, what was the main theme you took away from your discussions?
(you know Lawrence was on the call when the word “headphones” makes the list)
Like any complex topic, we didn’t expect to leave our one-hour #twineTalks with all the answers, but the key themes that were distilled highlighted some areas for us to focus on as #eventprofs who are slowly becoming community managers: Leverage existing infrastructure like associations and technology, less is probably more, nurture it to grow organically, and focus on creating channels for connections.
At the end of our event, we were also joined by #eventprof and community builder, Mustafa Khan. Mustafa is an event producer and community manager for Village Global, which is a venture capital firm funded by Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, and other iconic entrepreneurs. Mustafa has been planning events for nearly 9 years and he’s produced events for brands like Facebook, American Express, Target, and Macy’s.
Mustafa shared three things #eventprofs could do in the next 30 days to start our community building journey:
If you missed our #twineTalks, we hope the summary was helpful. We’re not recording these events since they’re meant to be very unstructured, organic, discussions, but be sure to check out our events page for details about the next event.
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For virtual events, this dearth of human connection means less impact for your event. Less community. Less brand loyalty. Likely less retention and engagement. Less ROI for your attendees and sponsors.