The end of a conference is the last thing you want to think about, but it’s also one of the most important parts of your event. You want your attendees to leave with a positive impression of their experience and remember all the great things about it — including how much fun they had after the main event ended. Whether you’re looking for inspiration or just want some ideas for how to throw an unforgettable after-party, this post will tell you everything you need to know.
Offer Food And Beverages
You want your conference attendees to walk away with a sense of community, and what better way to do that than by offering food and beverages at your after-party? However, it’s important to remember that not all people can eat the same things. That’s why you’ll want to offer vegetarian options, vegan options, and gluten-free options as well as dairy-free ones. Plus if you have any other allergies or dietary restrictions in mind (such as shellfish allergies), make sure they’re accounted for too.
Offer vegetarian options
While many people are vegan or gluten-free these days, not all of them will be at any given event. Give guests with dietary restrictions an opportunity to enjoy themselves by providing vegetarian options in addition to vegan ones (and if possible, gluten-free ones as well).
Corporate entertainment at your after-party is an important part of the conversation. It’s what keeps people talking about the event long after it’s over, and it will help keep them coming back for more.
Here are some tips for providing great entertainment:
- Don’t skimp on the entertainment budget, you’ll regret it later if something goes wrong and you don’t have enough money to fix it.
- Don’t forget to think about how much time you’ll have between events! You want enough time to get everyone moving from one room to another, but not so much that people feel rushed or overwhelmed with options for where they want to go next. Plan accordingly.
Provide Memorable Gifts
One of the best ways to get your attendees talking about your brand is by giving them a memorable gift. Corporate gifts can range from branded merchandise, such as hats or t-shirts, to special souvenirs like mugs or keychains. Just make sure you’re clear with your vendors on how many items you want (and what kinds) to keep costs down.
Another great way to help people remember the event and your company are through branded giveaways that are useful during the conference itself (if applicable). For example, if you’re holding an event for marketers at a technology conference, consider giving each attendee a USB drive with some useful information on it, this can save time when they need quick access later on. For sure, events like this would make everyone busy, so leave the giveaways/gift boxes to Swag Bar.
Collect Photos and Video Footage
Collect photos and video footage. If you don’t have the resources to hire a photographer or videographer like this corporate videographer in Brisbane, your attendees will be happy to help out. Ask each attendee in advance if they’d like to volunteer for photography duties for a small token of appreciation (photographs are great ways to remember events, after all). If you do hire a professional photographer, make sure that he or she is capturing people having fun and interacting with each other not just staring at their phones.
Use the images as social media content. Once the photos are uploaded online, they can be used on your website or blog posts and promoted through social media channels like Facebook and Twitter.
Provide Luxe Decor Details
Once you’ve settled on a location and theme, it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty: decor. First things first: are you going for themed decorations? If so, make sure they’re relevant to the conference. That doesn’t mean that your entire room has to be covered with adorable little monsters (unless that’s what everyone wants), but it does mean that if you have a galaxy-themed conference in February then make sure your decorations reflect stars and nebulas and not pumpkins or Christmas lights.
Think about how the space will be used during the event itself. If this is an after party where people will be milling around talking before heading home at 2 am, then there isn’t much point in brightening up every corner of your venue with twinkle lights; but if this is an afternoon affair where attendees are likely just spending 45 minutes eating lunch before heading back out into their day jobs as lawyers or accountants or whatever else they do with their lives, then go ahead, give them something nice.
Consider what time of year it is when planning your decor details (and whether those details may clash with any seasonal themes). Decorating for Valentine’s Day in December might feel wrong because nothing says “romance” like snow outside and cold air blowing through open windows indoors! But don’t worry too much about this one—we all know there are plenty of ways around these issues!
Add Special Touches
Plus, you can add some special touches to make the party even more unique.
- Use a hashtag for the event. It’s easy to forget that social media is still a thing after you’ve gone home from the conference, but people will be posting about it on their feeds and pages for years to come. It’s also a great way for attendees to keep up with each other and network off-site!
- Have a live DJ. If you have the budget and know someone who can spin records or mix beats, get them involved! Nothing helps people loosen up in an unfamiliar setting like good music (and maybe some drinks).
- Set up photo booths with props available at every table or booth location so guests can snap pics of themselves having fun with their new friends before they leave town! And if anyone wants professional photos taken at any point during the night by our team of photographers, just let us know ahead of time! We’ll bring all sorts of equipment so there will be no limit on how many shots we can take.”
Hire A Bartender
Hiring a bartender is a great way to make sure that everyone at your party has at least one drink. Your guests will feel more relaxed and comfortable if they know they can get a cocktail when they need one, and that’s in addition to being able to enjoy some of the other perks of hiring a professional bar service.
If you want people to keep partying all night, it’s helpful for them to have their drinks rather than constantly asking others for theirs and chances are, those other people might not have what they’re looking for anyway. That’s why having an expert mixologist on hand means less wasted time spent figuring out how much alcohol everyone wants and where it’s coming from.
Having bartenders also means that no one has to worry about getting drunk or drinking too much, they’ll ensure that every guest has what he or she needs without putting anyone else in danger or making him/her feel uncomfortable because someone else is being loud or obnoxious (or whatever). Plus, since the bartender(s) know how quickly things can go downhill if left unchecked (“whoops! I’ve already had two glasses of wine tonight”), retrieving glassware isn’t as tricky if someone loses theirs while dancing.
Use A Virtual Reality Booth
Virtual reality is a great way to engage attendees and create a memorable experience. VR can also be used in both small and large spaces, from hotel rooms to ballrooms. If you’re interested in bringing VR into your after-party, here are some tips:
- Be sure the space is large enough for the equipment. You’ll want at least 10 feet by 10 feet of space for each person wearing a headset (more if you’re going for multiple users). Your guests will need about 30’x30′ of open floor space with no obstructions like furniture or walls so they can move freely while wearing their headsets, too.
- Make sure there’s enough power available for your equipment. You’ll need an outlet close by that can support several computers running simultaneously (if using an Oculus Rift) or one computer with multiple ports (if using Gear VR).
Use A Social Media Wall
You can use the hashtag of your event and display it on a social media wall. This will help create a community among past, present, and future attendees. You can show pictures of people that were at the event and post updates about what’s going on at your after-party so they feel like they are there too!
Consider The Space Temperature
When planning you’re after-party, you’ll want to consider the space temperature. If it’s too cold, attendees will leave and go home. If it’s too hot, attendees will get sweaty and uncomfortable—and have less fun than they could have had.
If you’re hosting an event in a large venue like a conference center or a hotel ballroom, many different things can affect the temperature of the space: air conditioning units in one part of the room might not be working properly or at full capacity; windows may not be open and letting in the fresh air, or there might not be enough fans circulating to cool people down fast enough if they start getting overheated (or vice versa).
If you’re throwing your after-conference party in someone else’s space—like their office building or house—then there are even more variables to consider when determining how comfortable guests will feel during the event. While we’ve already mentioned some ways to control the environment at events like this (such as opening up windows), other factors such as whether it is winter vs summertime outside can also make a big difference in how much heat/cold gets brought into these temporary spaces during what is usually just one night’s worth of festivities!
Even after a long, busy day, attendees will be ready to network at your post-conference event.
After a long, busy day at your conference, attendees will want to unwind and connect with others. Don’t be afraid to provide some food and beverages, or even a special touch like music or entertainment. If you’re feeling bold enough, consider hiring a bartender—your attendees will love it.
If you’re looking to throw a post-conference party that will keep your attendees feeling energetic and enthusiastic, these tips are a great place to start. The key thing to remember is that most of these ideas are meant to be fun and interactive, so you should try not to get too caught up in creating an elaborate production. Don’t forget that the best way for people to enjoy themselves at your event is by keeping things light, friendly, and casual—and we promise that won’t be hard.