Want To Throw A Memorable Event? These Hacks That Will Leave Your Guests Talking
The difference between a memorable event and a forgettable one always comes down to the details. And no, we aren’t talking about expensive floral arrangements or the type of ceviche you chose for passed hors d’oeuvres. Those things are nice, but they aren’t necessarily the things that will resonate with your guests at the events’ conclusion.Instead, they will primarily remember the conversations and engagements they had, along with the emotion they were left with when it was time to depart.
Let me say that again….
Your guests will primarily remember the conversations and engagements they had, along with the emotion they were left with when it was time to depart.
Ok, so let’s unpack this for the ones that don’t believe us. You could hand select every guest to optimize conversations – we suppose. But let’s focus on the other aspect that is most in control for event producers and designers, and that’s the way guests feel once the party ends. How can we positively influence their experience while on-site?
An analogy first! Porsche has been making sought after luxury vehicles for over 70 years, and they understand that the driver experience is much more than just a powerful engine. Last year, our agency launched the Porsche Taycan – the first all electric Porsche to hit the market. A significant challenge presented to Porsche engineers was how to give Taycan owners the feeling of “power” when there was no combustion engine providing feedback to the driver. In other words, the feeling of an engine vibrating and the sound of the exhaust when you push the throttle to the floor wasn’t quite as exhilarating when it was…. well… silent! The Porsche Taycan was wicked fast, but they couldn’t allow their drivers to step out of the car underwhelmed with the whole experience. Just like we don’t want guests leaving one of our events underwhelmed.
What was the solution?
Porsche built an intake-noise amplifier called a Sound Symposer. This Sport Sound device recreates the revving noise and pumps the sound and vibrations into the cabin of the vehicle creating a much more authentic experience. Boom, problem solved!
Ok, so why did we tell you that story? Because guests are sizing up your event on more than one level, and they are doing it without thinking about it. Most Porsche drivers aren’t aware of this car’s feature, but they step out of the vehicle throttled by the experience! Most guests at an event aren’t aware of the details event producers put into play – but at the end of the party they need to be left with good memories and an affinity for the experience.
How can event planners and producers do this? Here are three hacks that can significantly elevate the guest experience for your next event.
No one wants to walk into a party that smells musty and stale. Our noses are constantly sizing up the rooms we enter and exit. Sure, we could light a thousand candles… but we would recommend keeping things a little more subtle and nuanced. At King Sixteen events, we run essential oil diffusers in various locations.
For example, at our 2019 Kentucky Derby event with Esquire Magazine and Rabbit Hole Bourbon – we designed a rooftop lounge that was adorned with live herbs suspended above the bar. Guests could choose their spirit of choice as we snipped rosemary, thyme, and fresh basil from above. Our bartenders (Death & Co.) dipped these into liquid nitrogen and then served inside guest glasses for an elevated aroma alongside their cocktails. In this room, we countered the fresh and earthy scent of the herbs with diffusers that pumped lemon, bergamot, and tangerine into the air. This room became a sensory experience, not just a bar.
At your next event, think about aromas you can add to the space that tie into the theme or location. Have an event overlooking the ocean? Cedarwood and Ylang Ylang might go nice with some of those views.
Normal conversations happen at about 60 decibels. A decibel is a standard unit of measurement for loudness. In contrast, a blowdryer is about 90 decibels and a trombone player can reach 110 decibels fairly easily. Remember when we said your guests will remember the conversations? Well it’s a little difficult to hear a conversation if you’re trying to shout over a swing band that’s being amplified into a room at levels above 110 decibels. Understanding the type of environment you are trying to create is very important. If it’s a wedding reception or corporate cocktail mixer, you might want to make sure that the music is no more than 5-10 decibels louder than the speaking volume. If it’s a late night party with dancing and a live band, anything over 105 db will start to become quite fatiguing to the ears. You can measure this with a device called a ‘digital sound level reader’ – something you can easily obtain for under $25 on Amazon or other retailers.
Don’t give your guests a reason to escape a room or the event all together. Monitor your sound levels and guests will leave happy, not fatigued.
Texture & Touch
At this point, it should be no surprise we have moved from smell, to sound, and now to touch. As event designers we are often hyper focused on what things look like, and our guests’ eyes are doing the heavy lifting. But if you really want to provide a memorable and lasting experience to your guests, do not overlook the way things feel against skin. If you have rented out a concrete warehouse for your next product launch or pop-up concert series, you may want to consider the things you have lots of so you can create some juxtaposition. Our agency launched a timepiece for Fossil Watches, and the venue we chose had lots of flat concrete areas, with black iron fencing, and stone walls. We brought in cream colored jute rugs and suede couches to liven up some areas of the facility. Lush green plants adorned those areas with marble coffee tables and hammered bronze side tables. We also laser printed brand illustrations on 8×4 planks of baltic birch, and lined a concrete entryway for some warmth. We ordered satin black cocktail napkins with foil embossed logos, and served curated cocktails in copper hammered mugs. A custom built airstream trailer with wood floors and leather couches provided a refuge from the cavernous concrete venue area.
The things your guests will interact with will leave an impression on them. Suede, wood, concrete, paper, copper, etc. The variety in material is important, and should not be overlooked. Use these hacks on your next event, and we promise your guests will remember the details.
King Sixteen is a turn-key event design and management agency specializing in brand launches, talent buying, product sourcing and more.
Partnerships that matter. Experiences that last.
We are a collective of event producers that work directly with national brands seeking to activate in unique markets across the United States.
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