How to Create Fun Meetings with Committed Participants

Have you ever spent countless hours planning a conference, bending over backwards to book the perfect speakers, come up with exciting topics and fun activities, all to ensure that your participants get a fun and memorable experience – only to find them looking like sleepy zombies halfway through the first program item?

Create interaction in three ways

In order for your participants to be able to keep up with and engage in the presentations, you must also involve them in what is happening. Remember, the information should not just be going out – it also has to go in! But it is not always easy to know in what way you can engage the participants, so here are three examples of how you can think before, during and after the session to maximize the chances that the participants interact, have fun and remember what has been said.

Build up your participants’ pre-understanding

One way of involving the participants and getting them to understand your message is to start a presentation with a moment’s reflection. Ask a question about the topic or theme of the presentation, for example “What does X mean to you?” or “What comes to mind when you hear X?”. Let the participants think for a few minutes and enter words they think of into the app, and then display the result as a word cloud on a big screen. Now, when you have built up your participants’ awareness, understanding and interest for the subject, you can begin the presentation by commenting on and discussing the participants’ thoughts, telling them how your presentation will cover their questions and what they can keep in mind during the session. In this way, they become more personally engaged and will remember what is said to a greater extent.

Don’t just give them the answer – let the participants guess!

During conferences and meetings, it is common for us to go through our slides and inform the audience about what we want them to know, without giving a second thought to whether they actually understand what we are saying. We talk at them instead of with them, which makes it very easy for the participants to form a passive approach to the information, and difficult to get involved and actually take in what is said. Instead of just telling them the answer, ask questions and let the participants guess! Display a question from the event app on the big screen and let the participants use the app to guess the right answer. Show their answers as a real-time bar graph so that everyone can see how the views and guesses shift. Then comment on and discuss the result before you reveal which option is right.

Quiz your participants!

How many times have you attended presentations where the speaker, after the last slide has been shown and some questions from the audience have been answered, simply say “that’s it, folks” and end the session? About 100%, I would guess. To give your participants the best chance for remembering what has been said, set aside time at the end of the presentation for a quiz! Enter some statements into the app and ask the participants to pick out the incorrect ones. In this way, they will rehearse and reflect on what has been said, which means that they will remember the presentation to a greater extent. By also showing the alternatives on the big screen again and discussing them, you will cement the information even more firmly in their minds, and you definitely get something to talk about during the coffee break!

Would you like some more tips on how you can engage your participants and help them remember the conference? Read about what our customers have done to succeed in our inspirational case!

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