Grow Attendee Loyalty and Sponsorship Revenue with VIP Experiences

by Molli Moss
in Blog

VIPLoungePic300wideYour conference, event or expo is likely full of relevant and inspiring content, engaging experiences, meaningful connections, and thought provoking insight for your attendees. It may also be an exhausting experience for attendees who spend a lot of time battling crowds - for parking or shuttlebuses, admittance to the event or to general sessions, buffet lines, concession stands, etc. The larger your event, the more likely your attendees are to have to wait around and fight crowds, and the risk is that they potentially give up on some element of your show. When that happens, you lose the chance to grow a loyal fan, and your exhibitors and partners lose a potential buyer.

Some of your attendees - Industry veterans, influential thought leaders, and affluent buyers - are likely willing to pay for a better experience. VIP Experiences can let attendees bypass lines, enjoy private lounges, network with other VIPs, and be the first to hear of industry news and special offers.

What can you do to create a VIP Experience at your next event? Here are some ideas:

  • Offer dedicated VIP entrances to bypass lines
  • Create VIP lounges and networking spaces, with snacks and drinks, Wi-Fi, cell phone charging, etc.
  • Provide VIPs the first opportunity to hear about special offers and new products
  • Offer discounted or complimentary parking reserved in the front for easy access
  • Offer invite-only access to special programming, celebrities, book signings, etc. (or first in line access)
  • Reserve seats/tables in good locations at large general sessions and lunches
  • Offer traditional concierge services – coat checks, dinner reservations, etc.
  • Offer event concierge services – Help your VIPs accomplish their event goals by facilitating connections, scheduling appointments and suggesting sessions or exhibitors with relevant solutions
  • Provide early access to the trade show floor, for special deals and access to high-demand items
  • Offer special gifts or promotional items

A show organizer who can bring VIP crowds together creates a very compelling sponsorship opportunity for a corporate partners to network with an influential and targeted audience. Access to a VIP experience could be sold through a special ticket package or offered based on other qualifications such as industry experience, buying influence, sponsor invitations, etc. Work with sponsors to co-create the experience but remember to keep the attendees in mind at all times. If the attendees have a good experience, you gain loyal fans and sponsors gain potential customers.