Reporting on the intangible moments that added to an event’s magic can feel daunting. What’s the best way to showcase impact to stakeholders who missed the electric buzz, participant excitement and quality connections? Enter ROI and ROE your dynamic duo for capturing event milestones that impress your C-suite beyond spreadsheets and attendee counts. 

Together, these insights can:

 

      • Serve as a cheat sheet on what worked and what to focus on to improve outcomes at future events.
         
      • Help drive attendee engagement and satisfaction — the single most important key performance indicator (KPI) in whether an event was successful or not, according to the latest Planner Pulse 

 

ROI (Return on Investment) measures the amount of money gained or lost from an event.

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ROE (Return on Experience) measures an event’s value from the perspective of participants, sponsors, and organizers. ROE tracks outcomes related to thoughts, feelings and behaviors.

ROI & ROE For Events: Master The Metrics

To accurately measure ROI and ROE, you’ll need to consider both tangible and intangible metrics. From financial returns to qualitative aspects, like attendee satisfaction, knowing what to track — and how — can bring the many facets of your event experience into focus. 

Here are some common metrics your peers track for each category. 

ROI Metrics

Financial Metrics

      • Revenue generated from the event.
      • Cost of organizing the event.
      • Profit margins.


Lead Generation

      • Number of leads generated during the event.
      • Conversion rates of leads into customers.


Sponsorship Value

      • Number of leads generated for sponsors.
      • Estimated impressions of display advertising, considering foot traffic in the venue, visibility of the displays, and duration of exposure.


Cost per Attendee

      • Calculating the cost incurred per participant.


Sales Metrics

      • Increase in sales resulting from the event.
      • Customer acquisition costs.


Marketing Reach

      • Measure the event’s impact on brand awareness.
      • Social media impressions and engagement.
 

ROE Metrics

Attendee Experience

      • Satisfaction levels of participants.
      • Feedback on event activities and content.


Networking Success

      • Number of new connections made.
      • Quality of networking opportunities.


Educational Impact

      • Effectiveness of educational sessions.
      • Knowledge gained by attendees.


Participant Engagement

      • Interaction levels during the event.
      • Attendee participation in discussions and activities.


Message Retention

      • Surveys/post-event evaluations.
      • Interaction levels during sessions.


Brand Perception

      • How the event enhances the brand’s image.
      • Perception of the organization’s values.


Community Building

      • Growth and engagement of the event community.
      • Long-term relationships fostered.
PRO TIP: New to capturing ROE? Most planners measure ROE through attendee surveys and attendance, according to the
latest Planner Pulse.
 

Show Me The Returns:
ROI-and ROE-Boosting Strategies

Asking the right questions during the event planning process can help you identify opportunities where you can increase returns in each area.  

Essential questions

      • What are the goals/objectives of the event?
      • Who is the target audience?
      • What is my budget?
      • What are my event KPI’s? 

These questions will guide you in defining your event “goal posts,” so you can set an effective strategy. Let’s dive into best practices for your next steps.

Tips for delivering a high ROI

woman pointing to dry erase board

Set clear objectives
Define specific and measurable goals for the event. Align objectives with the overall business strategy.

Target the right audience
Identify and target the audience that aligns with the event’s purpose. Tailor marketing efforts to reach potential high-value participants.

Effective budgeting
Create a comprehensive budget considering all aspects of the event. Allocate resources wisely, focusing on areas with the highest potential ROI.

Sponsorship optimization 
Forge strategic partnerships with sponsors aligned with the target audience. Maximize sponsor exposure through various channels. 

Maximize technology
Leverage event technology to track key metrics and set yourself up for stellar execution. This is a popular best practice: 83% of planners believe using technology that delivers immersive experiences enhances event ROI.

Data analytics 
Use data analytics to measure and track ROI metrics. Gather insights to refine strategies for future events.

Tips for delivering a high ROE

Attendee-centric approach 
Understand the needs and preferences of attendees. Customize the event experience to cater to diverse participant interests.

Engaging content 
Curate relevant and engaging content. Incorporate interactive elements, workshops, and networking opportunities.  

Networking facilitation 
Provide structured networking sessions. Implement tools, like the Chime Live℠ networking features, to facilitate attendee connections. 

Tech-powered innovation 
Introduce unique and memorable experiences. Consider incorporating technology and experiential elements that engage the senses to make your event unforgettable. 

Educational value
Ensure high-quality educational sessions and speakers. Encourage Q&A sessions and discussions.  

Post-event engagement
Continue engagement post-event through follow-up emails and surveys. Create a community platform for ongoing discussions and networking.

Experience feedback
Gather feedback during and after the event. Use feedback to make continuous improvements for future events.  

Community-building
Foster a sense of community among attendees. Encourage collaboration and shared experiences.

crowd gathering

Combining these strategies can help ensure your event becomes a catalyst for long-term relationships, brand loyalty and continued success in the dynamic world of event planning.   

Choosing a full-service event production partner, like Encore, can be an invaluable part of this journey. Leverage the experts to help set your event strategy and deliver the end-to-end creative, production and technology solutions that support your ROI and ROE goals. 

We’d love to partner on delivering an event that resonates with both your audience and your bottom line.

Click here to schedule a free consultation!

How to enhance learning, memory and mood with the cross-connection of senses  

Marcel Proust’s masterpiece Remembrance of Things Past begins with the narrator enjoying the taste, touch and smell of a cookie dipped in tea. That simple multisensory experience transports him back in time to his childhood, kicking off an epic multi-volume adventure. Similarly, what participants touch, taste and smell at your event can evoke positive memories and emotions, making your event unforgettable. 

There’s a deep connection between what we experience through our senses and how we learn, process emotions and relate to others. Think about babies and small children. When they are upset, they are comforted by touch or swaddling. When they are curious about what something is, they shove it in their mouth. And how willing they are to eat something is directly proportional to how it smells. Clearly, when we were small, we learned about the world by feeling, tasting and smelling it. We may be older, but those senses still inform how we feel about environments, people and experiences. That’s why it’s crucial to incorporate sensory information into your event experience. In the first part of our series, we shared how sound affects audience engagement. Read on to learn more about how touch, taste and smell can be incorporated into your event design to enhance the experience.

The effect of touch on social connection
and learning

Touch is one way that people display affection for one another. Being touched releases ‘happiness’ chemicals, like serotonin, in our brain. Think about how many hugs you give and receive at a conference; it’s a social bonding ritual that has the power to boost your mood. 

Touch also helps us engage on a deeper level with conference content. Think about second screen technology, like Chime Live, which allows participants to use iPads to zoom in and out of slides, rewind parts of the presentation and ask questions of the presenters. Giving attendees something to hold onto keeps them off their phones and helps them focus on what’s being presented onstage. 

catchbox microphone
Tactile sensations also help us connect playfully with others. Have you ever seen an audience engage with a Catchbox throwable microphone? The act of tossing the mic and catching it elicits lots of giggles and smiles; it’s a fun way to shake up expectations for audience feedback and presenter Q&As. 

Immersive experiences also benefit from including tactile learning experiences. For example, companies increasingly use virtual reality (VR) technology for on-the-job training. Another effective way to enhance learning comprehension is through the use of augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality technologies. Research has found that well-designed AR experiences cultivate problem-solving skills, improve learning outcomes and help people feel better about complex concepts. And mixed reality use increases learner satisfaction with content, technology and learning environments, even more than gamification. In fact, these multisensory educational tools not only enhance the learning experience but they increase overall interactivity and engagement with content.  

Explore more concepts in the guide, Harnessing the Potential of Touch with Technology, available for download here.

 

The effect of taste on experience and memory

Experienced event professionals take pictures of how chefs plate food and incorporate that level of detail into event menus. The reason why this is important is because what food looks like influences how it tastes. This is backed up by research that also suggests the key to designing a memorable culinary experience is making it a multisensory affair.  

For example, ambient music and background noise affects how food is consumed. Low levels of volume/music relax people and results in increased consumption of healthy foods whereas in a noisy environment, or one without any music, people are more likely to become excited and reach for unhealthy things to (over)eat.  

One pro tip to consider at your next event? Play classical, pop or cinematic music to relax participants while they dine. This can help reduce sluggish, unfocused audience behavior post-meal that can come from attendees overeating unhealthy foods.  

With Encore Music, you can choose a curated and already licensed playlist of any of these genres and beyond, influencing attendees to make choices that benefit their health — and your program’s engagement levels. 

How lighting affects dining satisfaction

In another study, researchers found that lighting can affect everything from mood to meal choices, with diners at dimly lit tables often experiencing a greater sense of contentment.

Wireless LED table lamps are a great way to set this type of atmosphere. While creating a calming, low-light environment, they can also change hues for a soft glow of color that reinforces your event theming. Simply use an IR Remote or wireless control to change their hue on cue. 

What meeting and event professionals can take away from this research is that by making intentional lighting and music choices, they can enhance their audience’s dining experience without spending more money on the food and beverage itself.  

One way to transform a meal function into a memorable experience is to incorporate tactile and visual technology. For example, interactive menus could provide peace of mind for people with food allergies or prompts for how to assemble a dish with the rest of the people at your table. Or, subtly set the mood and enhance the food presentation by lining a buffet table with colored LED table lamps. If you want to really engage participants, consider using targeted projection mapping to create a culinary experience that weaves an event theme into the meal itself. For example, table projections of sea life or garden scenes could tie what’s on the plate to 360-degree video screens surrounding the participants, transporting your audience out of the ballroom and into an extraordinary immersive environment.

For more ideas on creating immersive experiences around taste, download our Gastronomic Fusion guide by clicking here.

How aromas affect memory and mood

memory and food with armoas

Aromas are processed by the same parts of the brain that handle associative learning and emotions. This is the main reason why this sense affects behavior, mood, memory and work performance 

Have you ever wondered why real estate agents encourage home sellers to bake cookies or display apples during open houses? It’s because they know that certain scents relax, engage people and put them in a receptive mood. You can do the same thing at your event by using essential oils or an AromaTherapy machine to subtly fragrance a room. Or use natural elements like flowers or branches as décor that engages the sense of smell. 

Align scents you deploy with your desired audience behavior. For example, a recent Japanese study discovered that diffusing lemon scent through an office improved worker focus and performance, reducing errors by 50 percent and increasing productivity by 54 percent. Lemon would be a great aroma for strategic planning or training sessions. Research has found that rosemary reduces cortisol levels in the bloodstream, which means it would be a phenomenal scent to use if you want to reduce stress and help participants relax. 

To learn more about leveraging scent, download our guide, Scented Storytelling: Creating Memorable Experiences here.

 

Why multisensory events matter

Education and networking remain the top reasons why people attend events. However, the pandemic has changed participant behavior. Audiences have different expectations, ways they want to engage and a hunger for nontraditional environments. Designing multisensory events meets all these needs by using proven methods for engaging areas of the brain that help people relax, learn, connect, enjoy and remember what they experience onsite.

Interested in learning how to harness all the senses? Click here.

From sound effects to targeted audio, learn how to amplify participant experiences

Sounds provoke powerful emotions. The sound effects in a movie make us lean forward with anticipation or jump in surprise. A song on the radio has the power to transport us to another time and place instantly. Conversely, when you can’t hear what’s going on, you tune out. And when sound quality is degraded, it negatively affects people’s ability to communicate, learn and focus. That’s why sonic engagement is a powerful tool in any meeting or event professional’s arsenal. 

According to the National Institutes of Health, when people hear sound, it ‘lights’ up brain areas involved in emotion, memory and even physical movement. That’s why intentionally chosen music, video stingers and well-produced high-quality audio amplifies the emotional impact of a conference program and makes it more memorable. Let’s examine how integrating sound and engaging participants’ hearing can enrich onsite events.

Want an in-depth look at audio strategies that improve the attendee experience? Download our free guide for more pro tips and smart insights.

Traditional sonic tools and technologies

One in eight people in the United States over the age of 12 has hearing loss in both ears. Nearly ten percent of adults between the ages of 55 and 64 have disabling hearing loss. That’s why it’s important not to cut corners on how you employ traditional event audio tools. It’s important that the correct type of amplification is used throughout your event spaces to deliver high-quality audio.  

Traditional sonic tools and technologies include:

    • Speakers
    • Microphones
    • Monitors
    • Audio mixers
    • Closed captioning
    • Simultaneous translation

To aid comprehension, consider close-captioning event audio for the in-person audience. This not only helps the hearing disabled, but also for non-native English speakers. Simultaneous translation, whether AI-generated or using a live translator, is a must for international meetings.  

Setting the mood with music

Music sets audience expectations and influences their mood. For example, playing ambient jazz can help participants relax before you discuss difficult topics. If you’ve had people sitting in meetings all day, dance music can boost their mood and get them excited for evening activities. 

For any public event, music played needs to be properly licensed. Your pro subscription to a streaming service won’t protect you or your organization from liability if you’re caught playing a personal playlist. 

One solution is Encore Music. It offers more than 300 curated and properly licensed music playlists for commercial background music use. It also offers a royalty-free music solution with more than 100,000 tracks, sound effects and loops for virtual/hybrid events and stingers that you can edit and use for videos, motion graphics and walk-in/walk-out music. 

Combining sound with other senses to create more inclusive events

catchbox microphone

Some audio technologies engage the sense of touch as well as hearing. One such tech tool is a throwable microphone, called a Catchbox. It’s a fun way to keep your audience engaged. Audience members can toss the Catchbox to each other instead of waiting for mic runners to reach them. Because people don’t have to move from their seat to be heard, it also makes it easier for people with physical disabilities or more introverted dispositions to join in the conversation. 

Examples of using sound to create
multisensory experiences

When you’re creating an immersive experience, pay attention to the sound design. Sound effects and cues provide subtle information about our environments and can reinforce the illusion you’re creating. For example, the sound of waves and seagulls transport us to the beach; crickets remind us of relaxing summer evenings. 

Flying speakers from rigging gives you better sonic coverage of large spaces than floor-based speakers do. But did you know it also gives you the ability to create directional audio? When sounds ‘move’ from one speaker to another in sequence, it immerses the audience in a sonic bath that moves from one side of the room to the other. This can emphasize motion graphics, key presentation points and complete the feeling of being in a dynamic environment. 

Targeted audio can create sonic zones. Museums often use this to educate people as they look at a specific item. Targeted audio can only be heard within a tight radius. Once you move outside that cone of sound, the audio disappears. It’s a fantastic solution for trade shows when you don’t want sound to bleed over from one booth to another. 

Next-generation event audio engagement

Wireless technology allows you to create ‘silent conferences,’ where speakers can only be heard by audience members wearing headphones. Presenter mics transmit sound wirelessly only to the headphones in that vicinity. This allows for several activations or presentations to happen in a shared space. When participants want to move on, they can change the frequency on their receiver or remove their headphones. 

Audio also can be used to create synchronized individual experiences. A fun example of this is Improv Everywhere’s MP3 Experiments. Participants download an MP3 and are asked to bring a short list of items to a specific location. At the designated start time, individuals play the MP3, which leads them through a series of prompts and activities. The result is a playful group experience that each individual feels they helped create. 

The benefits of partnering with experienced
audio partners

High quality sound is a basic building block of any event. People need to hear what’s going on, otherwise they’ll disengage with the content. High quality sounds help people pay attention, connect and enjoy themselves. It’s an essential tool for crafting memorable events.

An experienced audio partner will ensure all your presenters and participants can be heard. They also can recommend fun and unexpected ways to engage audiences sonically, such as through directional sound or attention-grabbing music cues. Best of all, if your audio partner is on the same team as your event technology provider, you can breathe easy, knowing all the elements of your event will be seamlessly integrated with your vision and goals. That makes designing multisensory experiences more seamless and successful.

Want to learn more about leveraging audio solutions to design immersive, unforgettable events? Download our guide Symphony of Sound: Orchestrating Emotional Connections. 

When it’s time to select your venue, a site visit is one of the most critical steps. Not only do you get to physically step in your space and imagine your event coming to life, it’s a chance to ask the most important questions with your potential venue team.

Unfortunately, so many of us are busy with the details of the space contracts and food and beverage minimums, that our time with AV providers is often cut short. On your next site visit, be sure to squeeze in some time with your AV partner and ask these questions to ensure a successful event.

What would you recommend to make a greater impact with my budget?

If you only ask one question, this is it.  As planners, of course we have ideas right out the gate with an inspiration board – but no one knows the space better than an on-site event experience team. During your site visit, discuss your vision and ask what they would do to make it work within your plan and budget.

Because they have worked so many events within the very space you’re standing in, they can take the groundwork of your initial plan and elevate it – whether it’s rigging screens differently for new vantage points or trying new seating levels. This discussion can change the whole direction of your event and catapult it to new heights.

What other services do you offer?

These days, AV companies do so much more than just audio-visual. With teleconferencing, content design, and event internet, the same company will likely be able to provide you with almost everything you need for your event. So, before you start the taxing process of looking around for extra technology quotes, be sure to explore the opportunity of leveraging your in-house partner.

Are there any exciting new technologies I can employ?

It’s the old adage of “if you don’t ask, you don’t know.” Technology changes rapidly, and there may be something new on the horizon offered by your event partner. Maybe it’s a new mobile engagement app that could be a great way to show meeting value to your stakeholders. Your provider will be eager to talk to you about everything they have – you just have to ask!

Who will be my point of contact, and how hands-on will they be?

Don’t wait until you’ve already signed a contract to ask this question (or worse, until there’s a day-of crisis). Ask up-front how big their team is, and who will handle which parts of your meeting. It’s also a good idea to find out if the entire team will be on-site, or if there is an off-site team (for example, in the case of internet), so you know exactly what you’re dealing with going into your meeting and who’s on first.

What information do you need from me?

Communication is a two-way street, and your event partner may have some questions for you as well that will spark some ideas. Be sure to open up the conversation and make sure they have a full understanding of what you’re trying to accomplish up-front to avoid complications later on.

Takeaways

Arming yourself with these questions for your event partner during your site visit can instill confidence in your decision with venue selection, and ensure a seamless event from the start with a team that understands your goals.

Even the smallest event can involve surprising complexity: innovative technology, remote participants, not to mention on-site changes. And with each vendor or production partner, that level of complexity becomes amplified by the need to manage additional people and processes, expectations and production schedules. That’s why – especially if you have limited time and resources – partnering with a single event production provider to weave together all your creative, production and technology needs will make your (and your team’s) life exponentially easier. Here are three smart ways to leverage the power of a single event production partner. 

1) Align on strategy and solutions to enhance the participant experience

The best event production partner will be with you and your team from the very beginning – getting to know your event goals, history and patterns and co-creating the event strategy with you. Understanding why you are meeting and what you’re trying to achieve will help them make recommendations on how to bring your vision to life.  

If this partner can manage everything from the creative design/branding to sets/décor, speaker content and coaching to onsite production and technology, then you don’t have to worry about reiterating your vision to every vendor. Your event production partner bridges that gap, ensuring that all the disparate pieces of your event are united under one coordinated, well-communicated umbrella designed to help you achieve your event goals. A single provider also means no surprises: They’ll guarantee that software is up to date, presentation audio and video synch up, SSOs and APIs are integrated, and more. This eliminates many of the barriers to enjoyment attendees experience when tech infrastructure is cobbled together between different vendors. 

Even better alignment is assured if your partner has a relationship with the host venue. Partners embedded with your host venue can facilitate relationships with the venue team and help them align with your event strategy, desired participant experience and goals. In-venue partners also have the inside track on identifying potential challenges and proposing solutions to anticipate your needs. For example, their insider knowledge and relationships with hotel service groups helps you maximize room layouts, set-ups, quick turns, show flow and the timing of breaks and meals so they synch with other events happening in the venue. This also helps them troubleshoot problems that typically pop up during live events. This optimization and alignment between all your event vendors amplifies the cohesive nature of your event, creating a truly memorable experience for your participants as well as a relatively stress-free experience for you and your team. 

Once you find an event production partner you work well with, engage them to work with you across your event portfolio. They will be able to track important per-event and year-over-year metrics that will demonstrate how your work contributes to achieving organizational objectives. And they can ensure quality, ease and consistency from one event to the next while creating an economy of scale across venues. Best of all, they’ll already know how you like to work, what you’re trying to achieve and what’s worked or needs to be improved from event to event without you needing to educate them. This kind of relationship provides an excellent customer experience that translates into exceptional events and outcomes, no matter where in the world you produce them. 

2) Leverage production partner expertise

A single production partner isn’t only an expert on event technology. Creative branding, presentations, exhibitions, hybrid events, mobile apps, general sessions or audience engagement – they comprise teams with expertise in all these areas.  

The best partner will be able to explain good, better and best solutions for creative, production and technological aspects of your event goals and budget parameters. If the partner knows the venue, they’ll know what works in each room, and how to show each space off to its best advantage. They may be able to offer bundled services or special event packages you can’t find anywhere else. They’ll also know which options might produce a similar result at a different price point, so be transparent about your budget and other constraints so they can customize recommendations for you. There’s an incredible benefit to working with a team that knows you. And who can replicate established best practices for your events, no matter where they are organized.  

You want a partner whose team is up to date on the latest trends, technologies, audience engagement and customer satisfaction strategies. When interviewing potential partners, ask how their team members are educated and trained. What kind of capital investments are they making in their people, products and technology solutions? What is their approach to customer success? Do they see challenges or solutions? Alignment with your organization’s brand values is another crucial factor to consider, as it’s an important indicator of whether they will match your organization’s commitment to delivering service excellence and customer support.

3) Trust your production partner to coordinate resources and relationships

The fastest way to put time back on your calendar is to trust your event production partner to coordinate the resources and teams needed to execute your event. If they helped set the strategy and have deep knowledge of the host venue, then they only need your brand guidelines, feedback and approval to run with the other elements.

For example, you don’t have to worry about sourcing separate providers for audience engagement technology, an event app and in-room audiovisual. The event production partner can provide all those services and teams and make sure that everything works together. You can rely on them to do everything from producing walk-in motion graphics, designing lower thirds and choosing the audio stingers to livestreaming the general session and packaging it for your online learning management system post-event. They can provide stage managers and set designers.

When you engage one provider to do everything from creating the event strategy, designing the branding and content, producing the show and executing it, then you are more easily taking a holistic approach to your event, where every element is completely aligned with your event goals. This enhances the customer experience for your participants, exhibitors and/or sponsors.

This relationship makes your life easier because you have a single point of contact: the event production partner’s project manager, who sets deadlines and deliverables and ensures all the event elements are on track. The event production partner’s team will manage the inter-team communications with the creative, production, technology and on-site team.

Because of the variety of services, products and solutions, your partnership can scale based on your needs. A single event provider puts a strong network of resources at your disposal. This is especially important if you have a complex event. If they have a regional network of warehouses and venues, they can quickly scale up to provide you with additional resources, staff and equipment to amplify what may already be onsite.

In short, engaging with a single event partner will save you time and headaches as they coordinate the moving parts required to bring your vision to life. Having a single point of contact for all your event needs streamlines communication and simplifies the planning process. Because they’re aligned with your event goals and can help you track their achievement, they make you look good and help you demonstrate the value of your event portfolio in ways that will raise your profile within your organization. Best of all, when you partner with one team from strategy to execution, you maximize alignment and deliver truly memorable experiences.

Produce a memorable experience for your meeting participants

In today’s ever-changing landscape, the way people consume content has undergone a rapid transformation. What does this mean for meeting and event professionals? You’ve likely faced unique challenges in capturing (and keeping) your audience’s attention to deliver a memorable experience. Let’s consider some key trends that contribute to these hurdles.

encore marketing a large corporate event

  • Shortened attention spans:

With the proliferation of smartphones, the average adult’s attention span has significantly decreased. Encouraging participants to disconnect from their devices has become more challenging than ever.

  • Greater production value behind content:

When it comes to the crowd-pleasing content people routinely engage with, even singular episodes of popular series have soaring production value. Episodes of  The Crown cost an average of about $13 million, and high-end streaming dramas like Stranger Things now see price tags of $4 to $7 million per episode.

  • More targeted, digestible media:

Thanks to platforms like TikTok, which deliver fast-paced, hyper-targeted content to 1.67 billion users, many of your attendees expect pithy and punchy messaging, picked specifically for them. Your tech-savvy participants are used to being able to find, filter and immediately interact with the type of content they already like, thanks to the platform’s scarily effective algorithm. If you want to earn (and keep) attendees’ attention in today’s digital landscape, your content needs to meet their higher expectations. 

Considering the impact of these trends, it has become more difficult to entertain and engage an audience — while easier than ever to distract them. So, how can you ensure your content is compelling and has a lasting influence? Read on for insights that can help you revolutionize your storytelling.


Get my FREE content consultation!

Engagement is a metric that matters

Engaged Audience

A recent Encore survey revealed that planners prioritize attendee engagement and advanced content delivery. To revamp your content strategy and recapture the hearts and minds of your audience, here are three powerful approaches to consider:

  1. Cultivate community through content

Remember the viral Ice Bucket Challenge, which united people around a common cause? It brought ALS, and the ALS Association’s mission, to the forefront of Americans’ minds (and phones).

The content developed around the social media challenge was not only attention-grabbing but also prompted immediately achievable action.

Taking part was cheap, easy (except withstanding the ice water part), enthralling and, most importantly, repeatable. Meanwhile, the call to action rallied individuals into a community for a shared goal.

ice bucket challenge

Photo credit: ALS Therapy Development Institute

2. Craft Your storytelling as a unifying thread

Your content should seamlessly weave a compelling narrative throughout the entire attendee journey, from initial contact to post-event communications. However, avoid generating content that merely starts and ends there.

While the content onstage might be the main focus during your sessions, to deliver truly resonant messaging, consider how your programming ties into the tentacles of broader, ongoing conversations within your audience’s communities. By designing content that’s relevant to your participants and what’s going on in the world around you, you can leverage your meeting as a chapter in a much larger and powerful discourse.

3. Appeal to your guests’ emotions for lasting impact

Some of the most memorable event moments are emotionally charged rather than purely intellectual. Consider award shows in pop culture, where speeches, interactions and reactions generate buzz for days, weeks and even years.

Ultimately, you want your program to live on with a life of its own, and fueling similarly strong emotive responses is a great way to drive connections with your content. Is yours designed with that intent? Is it working hard enough to become unforgettable for your attendees? If the answer is no or you’re unsure, think through how you can better speak to and influence attendees’ emotions through your storytelling.

We’d love to help you do just that! Our Creative Services team dreams big when it comes to crafting inspiring content, amplifying it through strategic event branding and design, and influencing the purposeful connections that set programs apart.

Want a sneak peek into our capabilities? Explore some of the riveting content we created for Marriott International’s exclusive three-day conference for their general managers that created a customized experience just for them!

Let’s partner on incorporating these content strategies into your planning process for a program that captivates participants and extends the reach of your message well into the future.


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How to leverage color psychology to
Unlock the Unforgettable

Colors play a vital role in helping us navigate the world around us. Certain hues can influence how we feel, behave and even respond in various settings, giving them an intriguing role in human psychology and fueling our long-held fascination with them.

This year, Pantone, the industry leader in color forecasting, declared the vibrant Viva Magenta as the Color of 2023. Described by the institute as “bold” and “unapologetic,” this shade was chosen to evoke a sense of confidence and optimism in the post-pandemic world.

mega verse image of woman standing in front of moving LED

*Photo caption: Courtesy of ARTECHOUSE 

Each year’s color is carefully selected based on current trends, social and political events and global attitudes. Once announced, it becomes a symbol of the times, evoking emotions and memories specific to that moment.

In our industry, for example, we’re seeing the sense of optimism that Viva Magenta is meant to signify with the surge of in-person events — which are expected to continue increasing. This hopeful sentiment is reflected by audiences who have shown their desire for the return of face-to-face interactions.

In a number of other business sectors, ranging from fashion to marketing, the color of the year is used to forecast trends in branding and design, product development and purchasing decisions. It’s become so influential that the 2024 color of the year has already been selected (Apricot Crush), and there are predictions for which hue will hold the glory in 2025 (Future Dusk)! But what grants a singular shade such power? 

Read on to explore the impact of color psychology and how to leverage it to promote certain mindsets, further engagement and participant learning, and deliver an inspiring attendee experience at your next meeting or event. 

Color psychology: Why certain hues affect
our moods

Colors are not just a matter of aesthetics; they can have a profound impact on our mental state. Research in this area has confirmed what we have long suspected: that colors can influence our internal physiology and create unconscious reactions.  

Consider the neurological effects of warm versus cool tones. Bright and warm colors, like red, orange and yellow, stimulate our senses and can evoke feelings of happiness, optimism and energy. Contrastingly, cool and calm tones like blues and greens are typically internalized as soothing.  


“When people are in an environment that has a fair amount of red accent light, their pulse rate increases slightly and they tend to breathe a little bit faster, which actually equates to them being able to think more analytically. This means that they are able to crunch numerical data better than in say a blue room which has the converse effect.”

The sway color has on our mindset and behavior has become so renowned, in fact, that prisons have even used a specific shade of pink, known as “drunk tank pink,” in efforts to calm violent prisoners.  

drunk tank pink - pink prison bars to calm violent prisoners

This fascinating field of research shows us that, not only does the presence of color affect our cognition and mood, certain hues affect how we internalize information and interact.  

How color enhances participant learning and the event experience 

Humans are more sensitive to the impact of color than you may expect, something that grants you a unique capability to strategically influence audiences. How? By leveraging this aspect of your meeting or event design, you can boost engagement and participant learning to strengthen the power of your programming. 

“There has been a lot of research dedicated towards neuroscience recently and one really neat finding as it relates to our business is that when the right colors are added to a meeting, attendees are more engaged, message retention increases and the overall atmosphere is improved.  

 “What this means in layman’s terms is that by using certain colors within the meeting space, we can adjust an audience’s mood to best match the content being presented,” explains Drozd. 

Combine these findings with research that demonstrates 80-85 percent of our perception, learning and cognition is mediated through vision, and it’s clear to see how being purposeful about color use can work in your favor.

Amplify your impact with vibrant
technology solutions 

Having the optimal technology solutions and expertise on your side can ensure you’re showcasing the right colors, and at the right moments, to shape the participant journey and reach new levels of success in achieving your meeting objectives. 

Here are a few of our top recommendations: 

LED technology and scenic elements

LED technology is a perfect way to incorporate greater use of color at indoor or outdoor gatherings. This solution enables you to cast screens or even full walls in color, delivering striking visual content in high resolution, regardless of surface or image size.   

 If you’re planning a gala where you want to promote interaction, for example, you could incorporate sweeping use of yellow visual content with LED walls. The attention-grabbing technology and brilliant hue would serve to encourage these connections and even boost participants’ moods.  

video mapping and colors

Focused on long-range planning during a critical small meeting? Add a dynamic aspect to your space with LED table lamps set to cast purple tones. This hue can support goal setting to support your desired outcomes.  

No matter your program’s aims, LED technology provides you with a rich palette to play with. Using this lighting in place of a traditional incandescent fixture allows for endless color mixing, including saturation and intensity. Change the ambiance of your event space at any time color mixing is executed seamlessly. 

 Another way to dazzle audiences with chromaticity? Reinforce the effects of your intentionally chosen tones through the use of scenic elements, such as spandex soft sets or backdrops, like BackDrop Pro. These can serve as palettes for your lighting fixtures and amplify their presence in your space.   

Whether you’re planning a large-scale event or small meeting, our experts can help you choose the right color-creating tech to captivate and impress audiences. Plus, by partnering with a full-service provider like Encore, you’ll have an industry-leading team on your side to provide guidance on enhancing your meeting or event design, creating stunning content, and managing technology before, during and after the production.  

Want to discuss your personalized meeting or event needs? We’d love to provide a free consultationon how we can help deliver a memorable experience that leaves audiences amazed. 

Interested in learning more about one of our popular colorful technology solutions? Click the button below to explore our experts’ guidance on how to reimagine the possibilities of creating transformative events with vivid LED technology! 

You’ve heard the term ‘immersive experiences.’ But what does that mean? Let’s go beyond the buzzword to look at how you can use cutting-edge and traditional audiovisual (AV) technology to leverage this trend. 

What is an immersive experience?

An immersive experience is one that engages one or more senses. It encourages people exposed to the experience to become active participants rather than passive observers. It invites them to relax and engage with their environment in new, more memorable ways. 

In an event context, an immersive experience can describe several things. But, at its root, it is an environment that mentally, physically and/or emotionally engages the senses:

      • Sight
      • Sound
      • Taste 
      • Touch
 
Now that we’ve defined what immersive experiences are, let’s talk about how to create them.
 
Before and after lighting services

Using light to influence participants' mood

Lighting helps participants connect with each other. When you’re in a darkened theater, you sit back and relax because no one can see you. But when the faces of people sitting around you are visible, you feel connected to their enjoyment of what’s happening. When they cheer or laugh, it’s easy to get swept up into that same joyous feeling. When you choreograph lighting to what’s being presented on stage, you can chart and control the audience’s emotional journey. 

Lighting also sets a mood. Being in natural light improves mood and increases happiness. And using LED screens helps you maximize venues with natural light without sacrificing presentation visibility. 

Colors affect mood. For example, blue light accelerates the relaxation process, yellow boosts happiness and concentration, white light alleviates depression, and purple light reduces emotional and mental stress. When designing the experience you want participants to have, incorporate color theory into how you light the space. 

Let’s not forget other technology that leverages the power of sight. LED screens can transform small spaces like windows to the largest exhibit halls into whatever you want to display. When you add vibrant encompassing visuals to a room, then you can transport guests to other worlds with the push of a button. And closed captioning can assist guests with hearing loss be connected to the message directly

Leveraging sound design to encourage engagement

We’ve grown so used to hearing music when we’re out in public, that when it is absent, that creates a void. The music you select to play at your event is crucial — Creating anticipation for what will come, setting the mood and grabbing participants’ attention. Encore Music provides carefully curated and fully licensed playlists for every occasion and audio clips that can be remixed or used for videos, walk-in music and stingers.  

Audio should be used to strategically engage participants in different ways. For example, technicians can surround the audience with sound to totally immerse them in what’s happening. They can move sounds from one side of the room to the other to create a sense of movement, including tracking with what is playing across the screens. The volume and intensity of the sound can be used to drive the event’s storytelling. 

Aside from these techniques, there are also tools like directional audio, which provides a focused stream of audio that can only be heard in a specific space. This lets you create activation areas that don’t bleed out into the rest of the event or show floor. 

You can also use “silent event” technology like headphones to hold simultaneous sessions in a communal space without interfering with anything else happening there. Don’t forget the power audio narration has to help visually impaired guests engage with experiences they can’t see.

Injecting scents into events

smelling lavender flowers

Have you ever noticed how hotel lobbies smell a certain way? Hoteliers leverage olfactory science to influence guest attitudes and mood. This is because our sense of smell is the strongest of the five senses, and the one most tied to memory and emotion. In fact, 75 percent of all daily emotions are generated due to smell. 

Scents can be used to add character to a themed environment. Think coconut oil and beaches or lavender and summer gardens. They also enhance taste. That’s why you swirl wine around a glass and smell its ‘nose’ before tasting. 

Scents also can influence behavior. A Nike Study found that subjects were willing to pay 10 to 20 percent more in scented environments. Lemon scents can increase productivity. Lavender and jasmine scents ease feelings of stress. 

Be thoughtful and judicious when you use scent, as some people are highly sensitive or allergic to perfumes. Scents can be infused through the space with atomizers, naturally distributed through floral or food displays or embedded on physical objects, like scented candles or paper. 

Engaging audiences with the power of touch

There’s a reason why museums warn visitors not to touch sculptures. People often explore and make sense of the world by touching objects that appeal to them. Watch a baby or toddler and you’ll see how basic this instinct is. 

Catchbox microphone for increased engagement

Adults aren’t often encouraged to interact with objects physically, so it creates a fun, playful environment when they are permitted to do so. One way to introduce this into an educational session is to use a throwable microphone, like a Catchbox. These cushy squares eliminate the need for mic runners as audience members can toss the microphone to each other. With some coaching on how to use it, this becomes a fun and engaging way to conduct a Q&A. 

Interactive projections and projection mapping can create opportunities for participants to play with the environment or enjoy light competition with each other. These games and experiences can be projected onto flat surfaces, like tables, floors or walls. They can also be projected onto unexpected surfaces, like falling water. 

Inviting participants to a moveable feast

When people file into a ballroom for a meal function, they think they know what to expect. Subvert those expectations by creating an immersive experience centered around their sense of taste. 

a moveable feast

Encore Project Manager Miguel Sanchez used projection mapping to coordinate table-based imagery and meal courses to create a synchronized experience for nearly 400 diners. Every time a different course was served, the entire look and feel of the table shifted along with it to create a different mood around the food. This combination of technology and gastronomy transported guests visually and enhanced their enjoyment of each course. 

Putting it all together

Flooded LED Subway

When the Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida Chapter wanted to amplify their 27th Annual InterContinental® Miami Make-A-Wish Ball, they partnered with Encore to transform the main dining experience and open auction event into a New York City aquarium with 360 Film and LED walls. A saltwater scent was piped into the room to enhance the illusion. The transitional experience between the opening reception/silent auction and grand ballroom featured a mesmerizing visual ‘supernature’ LED tunnel. The technology allowed the Encore team to quickly flip the grand ballroom and pump music into a new environment for the afterparty. Guests were so thrilled by the immersive experience Encore created that Make-A-Wish raised a record-breaking amount of money — twice as many donations than what was generated the previous year. 

The takeaway

Immersive events are more than a buzzword. They’re a way to enhance participants’ event experience by engaging their senses. When thoughtfully done, you don’t need fancy equipment to produce an immersive experience that engages, educates and entertains event attendees in ways that make traditional experiences feel flat.  

Ready to try your hand at this trend? Contact Encore to see how we can transform your next event into an immersive experience. 

Learn which questions can make all the difference in your small meeting planning and experience

Small meeting planning typically begins with identifying the space you’ll use, a few pieces of equipment you’ll need and ordering any needed food and beverages. But small meetings can easily become big experiences with just a few impactful technology additions! With the right experts and solutions, meeting planners have the power to create small meetings that are collaborative, innovative and even transformative.  

Download the Five Key Questions All Small Meeting Planners Should Ask Guide today!

Identify crucial areas where you can elevate your small meeting design, programming and participant experience. Knowing which questions to ask can guide your planning and set you up for success in meeting your unique goals. 

small meetings graphic

Over 70 percent of meeting and event organizers believe networking and engagement will be the future of events. The challenge is how to do that. LED walls are one of the most flexible technology solutions you can use to breathe new life into your programming. From creating immersive environments to transforming presentations into interactive activities, LED walls can enhance indoor or outdoor meetings and events in myriad ways.

Let’s examine some use cases and applications where LED walls can support event goals to facilitate networking and improve engagement.

How do LED walls create more engaging and immersive environments?

“The No. 1 reason why we attend meetings is to interact with people,” says Encore Product Manager Damein Futch.

Damien Futch

If you use LED to run keywords from the keynote and use it as a billboard to share critical ideas and information,” he says, “you can transform a cold space into a warmer place for people to connect to your event and each other."

“Instead of you telling me the Top 10 things I should remember, I learn because you’re using the billboard principle in the dining room.”

LED walls also allow you to change the environment without changing the space. “There’s an unlimited palette of opportunities,” Futch explains. For example, there might be a beach scene during the morning session, which turns into a sunset over a mountaintop for the general session.

“You can even put a transparent LED over a window in a breakout room.” This makes it possible to transport participants to different places, planets and emotional spaces without moving them from their chairs.

“Any time you want an interactive display behind something you want to sell or promote, you can use an LED wall,” Futch says. “You don’t have to worry about people walking through the cone of projection.” LED panels can be built to look like a product that you can transform into anything you want with striking visuals.

You may have seen LED walls used to show what people are experiencing while wearing virtual reality (VR) headsets or as a background layer for augmented reality (AR) activations. But have you heard about extended reality (XR)?

“Extended reality is a camera working with a media server and LED wall to create realistic background movement to give viewers the sense of being in another location,” Futch explains. It’s a technique used for TV/film productions to create immersive 360-degree sets. But the same technology can be used for events.

Futch says a professional meeting or event organizer’s use of LED walls is only limited only by their creativity, budget and opportunity. “The ROI of LED is exponentially greater than you see with other mediums. It costs more because it accomplishes more, and you can do more with it.“

A technology solution for all meeting types and formats

“Any time you have a screen or a wall, you can use LED,” Futch adds. “LED walls can be used in general sessions, breakout rooms, digital signage, creative elements, scenic and anywhere else, really.”

led breakout room

What does this look like in practice? The resolution and clarity provided by LED walls make them a good fit for medical meetings or any other gatherings where it’s essential to view high-contrast images. In general sessions, they can be used in place of traditional projections as scenic elements, or they may comprise the entire set. “LED walls don’t have to be rectangular or square,” Futch shares. “You can build and stagger them into any configuration you need.”

Another benefit? You’re not restricted to aspect ratios with LED walls the way you are with traditional projectors. You don’t have to worry about blending because you’re using one surface, whether it’s a window, wall, curved screen or even the side of a building. It can be as large or small as you need without compromising the resolution quality.

LED walls can also be used as creative accents. For example, if you wanted to use a projector for a presentation, you could wrap the presentation with LED walls to drive home the message.

No matter how they’re used, people’s eyes and attention naturally drift to LED walls because they’re so vivid and bright, which makes them an incredible tool for engagement. “You could even put one behind a registration desk,” Futch says. “And people will be drawn in.”

The benefits of using LED walls vs projectors

LED walls possess several technological advantages to projection equipment traditionally used, whether you’re creating scenic elements, relaying information or transforming spaces with projection mapping. These advantages enhance the participant experience and elevate the overall event.

The clarity and resolution of LED walls are one of the advantages they hold over traditional projection devices. “You’re able to achieve a higher impact with LED walls than with a projector,” Futch says. The resolution of a projector decreases as you increase the size of the projection, whereas the LED image remains the same resolution regardless of size.

Brightness is an additional advantage. “A projection always competes with stage lights or daylight,” Futch says. You never have to draw the curtains in a room with an LED wall. Examples of this can be seen within exhibit halls or outdoor venues.

Projectors are either rear-projecting or front-projecting. In both cases, a considerable amount of space is required to fit the ‘cone of projection.’ This isn’t the case with LED walls.

“You gain back seating and capacity for your attendees,” Futch informs. “You don’t have to worry about projection distance because everything is displayed on a flat surface.”

When light is projected, it bounces off a screen before it enters the participants’ eyes, making it a passive medium. In contrast, LED walls are an active medium. What they display is directly absorbed by the viewer. As Futch adds, “It is like your TV on steroids.”

It also offers increased opportunities for creative expression. “LED walls are visual LEGOs,” Futch explains. “With projectors, light [is] beamed at a source. With LED walls, the possibilities are endless when it comes to resolution and area covered.”

Think about the events you have coming up. How would you like to use LED walls to surprise and delight, educate and engage, or entertain your participants? We’d love to provide a free consultation on how this technology solution can help you achieve your meeting or event goals.

Interested in learning more? Click the button below to explore our experts’ guidance on dazzling audiences with LED technology.