Creating one for the history books: How to ensure that your event has longevity – Richard Dodgson, founder and creative director of Timebased, shares his pearls of wisdom…
In the fluid and fast-moving cultural society of today, there is an endless amount of content and noise out there. Ensuring that your event has longevity is essential in increasing and maintaining its impact. It is also crucial to build on previous events and continuously develop brand associations and the overall style of your brand. Here are some top tips on how to extend the relevance or lifespan of your event long after the occasion itself has finished.
Before the event has taken place, be sure to strike the right balance between raising awareness and maintaining a certain element of mystery. In some cases, less is more, and if you reveal every single aspect of an upcoming event, there is no element of surprise or intrigue left. So be sure to share, without falling victim to the effects of oversharing.
You could start by setting the scene, creating some context of the event, giving it a purpose and ensuring that your audience are primed before they get there. In doing this, your guests will have a sense of anticipation and can dive into the live experience when the time comes.
Social media is, of course, a vital tool that can be utilised to engage in pre, during and post event exposure and hence manage expectations and form a gripping narrative. Instead of relying on a few intense live moments, use this extended timeline to get your messages across in digestible, bite-sized chunks, once again allowing for maximum exposure.
After the event, you should always follow up with staggered review and analysis content. A variety of behind-the-scenes videos and images, curated galleries, analysis articles, gossip, highlights, podcast reviews and discussions with partners and collaborators will engage the audience and keep them talking.
With regards to the live experience itself, fundamentally if you generate unique, show stopping moments and conversation pieces, people will continue to talk about them for years to come. Think deeply about the storytelling element and innovative design concepts that go beyond the popular or the ordinary – and really makes a distinctive mark.
Another suggestion is to use cultural anniversaries or happenings as an opportunity to throwback to past events. This will act as a gentle reminder of the success of the event, as well as reigniting former topics of discussion. This also reflects well on your company more generally, proving that you have a finger on the pulse of current affairs.
Whilst it is a great idea to “throwback” to specific moments, do not continually talk about the event longer than six months after it has passed. In focussing purely on this, it will seem as though you have nothing new or relevant to say and people will get bored of seeing the same content.
Creating something temporal is part of the allure of events; they maintain an exclusivity reserved for the guests of the night. Only they are privy to the all the finer details and atmosphere of the event, while the social media posts boost awareness and aspiration for a wider audience.
Producing an event that stands the test of time requires a careful combination of engagement at all stages of organisation. When all these elements are appropriately nurtured, the long-standing impact will speak for itself.