Event Management Tips
Do You Know the Real Value of Event Networking?
Jun 14, 20224 min read
Organizing a successful event means understanding the real value points of event networking and making sure you deliver on them. Because when they are addressed well, it will inspire participants to network among themselves. And that’s the real value of your event.
So let’s dive into some intense research by the Industrial Marketing Management Journal’s article, “Why Should I Attend? The Value of Business Networking Events.”
The core values the article addresses are:
Professional value means receiving information and best practices to improve or solve particular issues. Organizing this kind of value during your event can fall under two categories. Having the right speakers addressing the right topics. And carefully creating the attendee list so participants can learn from each other and exchange information. Human beings are curious of one another. We want to know what other organizations are doing differently or better.
The other side of professional value is gaining new customers, business partners, suppliers etc.
To support this value, event organizers can:
- Use event matchmaking to help bring interesting parties together.
- Make sure pre and post event matchmaking communication is informative, timely and courteous
- Follow up with participants after the event with relevant content
Innovation Value of Networking Events
People attend networking events to get access to new markets and find a way to collaborate. They also want to know about new technologies. To see what vendors or exhibitors have to offer. Exhibitor booths allow the seller to demonstrate on the spot, which potentially give attendees new and thrilling experiences.
- To support this value, event organizers need to sign on exhibitors who can dazzle the attendees with their inspiring products and services.
- Make sure to create more visibility for exhibitors with
The bigger names an event organizer can draw into the event, the happier the attendees are. There is a boost in reputation for participants who manage to interact and eventually do business with high equity brands. It’s always nice to add a big name to a customer list or testimonial.
- To support this value, pursue big name exhibitors, speakers, and attendees.
Not to be underestimated. People are social creatures after all. The social value has nothing to do with professional connections, but rather creating or strengthening personal connections with others.
- To support this value, make sure to supplement structured event matchmaking with spontaneous moments to meet as well. Physical events can mean coffee breaks. Virtual and hybrid events can mean incorporating interactive virtual spaces used for networking and hangouts, like Wonder.me
Event networking needs to stir some emotion in the attendees. Evoking an emotional response means that attendees are more likely to actively communicate and participate in the event.
- To support this value, event organizers need to consider how attendees relate to each other. Choose the guest list with care and consideration.
- Organizers need to find speakers who inspire a connection between themselves and the attendees to create an empathetic environment.
This is the sensorial experience of the attendee.
- To support this value makes sure to deliver on good food, good location, good atmosphere.
How and What the Values Deliver for Event Networking
The end goal of delivering these values as best as possible is to support positive interaction between attendees. Because event networking success is dependent on the participants themselves. They are the “primary actors” of the event.
When to Measure Individual Event Networking Value
Event networking value is created at different times. So it’s important to be aware that value is created before, during and after the event.
- Before, by the event organizer being available and responsive to questions in a fast and clear manner.
- During, by the event organizer monitoring the event while it is happening, get feedback immediately, and make changes. Concentrate on hedonic and emotional value during the event, as these values emerge mostly during the event.
- After, by sending out a survey to ask how the event was for the attendee, by delivering content, and by offering post event matchmaking because social, professional and learning value do also emerge after the event too.
How to Measure Event Networking Value
All these values come together to help and encourage participants to have a positive and effective event networking experience.
Sending out a survey when the event is over is valuable of course, but the real measurement is the quality of the meetups between attendees.
To measure that, ask participants directly and immediately after their 1:1 meetings how they were. With the right event networking platform, it’s easy to ask attendees:
- If a meet up actually took place
- Lack of interest between the meeting parties
- No further contact is planned after the meeting
- It was very informative but no cooperation planned
- Cooperation possible
- Cooperation already agreed
Knowing, understanding and executing the core values of what makes an event successful will deliver results you want for your event. Attendee satisfaction, collaborations, and business partnerships.
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