The pictures looked amazing. The promo video was enticing. The event screamed,
Don’t Miss This!
FOMO was real.
I bought my ticket, paid for my airfare and joined their Facebook group.
I was excited. Everyone was excited.
Off to another country with unlimited opportunities..
The day finally arrived.
The venue was beautiful. Points made. Promise kept.
That happened to be the only promise that was kept.
This event was ok, but it could have been amazing.
There were a list of challenges that they had. Some were in their control and others not, but they didn’t have backup plans in place to keep the experience amazing.
- They planned the event in an area where the weather was unpredictable at the time of the year the event was being held. So, everyone had packed clothes for a warm spring and we ended up with cold rain. They venue was not heated at all, so everyone froze. Not enough blankets, no heat and lots of rain makes for a very miserable time physically at an event.
- They provided an agenda, but following it was not a priority. Some attendees were nonplussed about it, but many were bothered and annoyed as they had made business arrangements and scheduled calls around the original schedule provided. Now, it’s understandable that agendas change and may have to be adjusted, but this was way beyond anything I had ever witnessed or experienced before. At this point, you literally need to discard the agenda or not provide one if you are not planning on following it.
- Excursions and downtime was promised. And oh how we really needed it. Can you guess how much downtime we got and how many excursions we went on? That would be Zero and One. Since they had issues with the agenda and the logistics that were tied to it, there was absolutely zero downtime. Many attendees had to create their own downtime which meant they had to miss sessions of the event that they may have wanted to attend. The one excursion was more exhausting than fun for most. Neither components of the event were thought out well.
- They promised a Gluten Free and Dairy Free meal plan as most of the attendees were GF or DF, but the first meal they served was pizza. And you guessed it, it was not GF or DF. The meals continued that way throughout the event and many struggled to eat and were impacted physically.
The event creators of this event tried hard, but they missed the signals and signs. They were so focused on their own agenda and what they wanted to have done that they missed the prime opportunities to improve the experience for their attendees. The energy and excitement about the event fizzled out as the days progressed.
Minor changes or adjustments could have easily made this experience more positive for all attendees.
Key takeaways for all event creators:
- Fulfill all promises on your marketing/sales page
- Tune in to your attendees actively during your event
- Communicate changes to your attendees in a timely fashion
- Adapt to keep the energy up