Are your events delivering value for time to your attendee’s?

David Woodbridge – Director International Customer Engagement

At GPJ we believe that customer value for time is the key to the long term success of your experiential events.

I think you would agree we are all time poor, so when it comes to planning and delivering a customer engagement, be it an event or client meeting, we need to ensure that we are providing attendees with value for their time.

In essence value for time should be a core part of every experiential marketing campaign. A key reason for this assertion is that access to the information normally delivered at events is readily available on the internet either pre or post the event happening. In fact, this access has fundamentally altered how and why a customer would attend an event.
As an experiential marketing agency this means we need to constantly test our design thinking against a customer’s perceived value for their time. Although this sounds like an obvious and simple concept it is probably one of the most difficult outcomes to consistently achieve in any customer engagement or journey.

In fact, if an attendee leaves an engagement saying “I didn’t know you did that” then we may have collectively failed because inevitably they will soon be able to see and even experience everything online and therefore the engagement becomes less of a priority for that attendee. One possible future outcome of not delivering value is that your targeted attendee does not attend your engagement, and this will become more and more evident to clients as they begin to use real-time data analysis of their events.

So what should an attendee be saying if we have been successful?

Before I answer that question just for a moment put yourself in the shoes of a customer attending your well planned and executed engagement. They have left their busy schedule to spend time with you. In essence they have given you their time, so what value are you offering in return?

Only by understanding the end customer can you begin to answer the basic question on customer value for time. This does not mean you should go out and do endless interviews and surveys, rather it means that you need to utilise all customer profiling and targeting strategies that you have available to inform your engagement designs.

Our clients vision, strategy and engagement design are aligned by creating a set of agreed design principles. These design principles are used diligently to test every aspect of the engagement throughout the creative process, customer journey design, execution and most importantly measuring and reporting on agreed performance indicators.

For example, here are four high level and very manageable design principles which can be effective in working towards customer value for time strategies:

1. Shift my perceptions of you
2. Make this relevant to me
3. Show me your vision
4. Make me feel confident in you

Let me finish by answering my initial question: what we really want the customer to say is “I didn’t know I needed that”

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