Appreciation Events that Exceed Client Expectation
Appreciation events are opportunities for businesses to say thank you to their customers, employees, volunteers, and to build rapport. For event planners, the challenge is to create an environment that genuinely shows the guests that they are appreciated in a meaningful way while avoiding stiff formality.
Here are some ideas on how to do just that!
Types of Appreciation Events
Recognition: An employee recognition event is held for employees of a company, and in some instances, their spouses and guests. The company recognizes employees for outstanding accomplishments and may even present awards. A volunteer recognition event typically has the same approach.
Customer appreciation: A customer appreciation event is held in appreciation for the company’s loyal customers.
More Than An Appreciation Event
Let’s be real. There is often more to appreciation events than a simple ‘thank you’. As an event planner, you should aim to exceed client expectations so that other goals that you may not be aware of will be met as well. Click To Tweet
By thanking customers, volunteers or staff in such a way, a company may be looking to achieve other types of results such as improving employee morale or performance, unveiling a new product that will generate additional sales, or generating interest from other potential customers.
What Will It Look Like?
When planning an appreciation event, there are unlimited choices when it comes to the type and location. Some of the options include:
- A large party with entertainment
- Dinner and theatre for a small group of people
- A suite at a sporting event
- A party at the company’s facilities
- An outdoor party
The Wow Effect
When choosing the type of event, try to think of what those being thanked would appreciate. Ask for your client’s thoughts, but also try to get a sense of the guests who will be at the event.
- What are their demographics?
- Are they mostly young families?
- Are they cool professionals?
- Do they enjoy the outdoors?
Making sure you target their wants will definitely better position your event from the beginning.
If you want to impress both the guests and your client and target your client’s secondary goals, creating a wow effect will have people remember and appreciate the event. Keep it a secret, choose the right moment, and you’re almost sure your client will remember it for a long time.
The Ideal Environment
- Make sure the venue is conducive to mixing and mingling. Don’t book a space that restricts people from moving around or talking to others. Stand up events are perfect for this as they allow guests to interact with each other as they move around the room.
- Limit the number of seats available. If there are too many, guests will tend to take one and stay there all night, rather than move around and interact with the other guests.
- If entertainment is present, keep the volume low so people can hear each other.
- Make a plan about or drinks. A bar with finger foods works best for standing events.
It’s important to properly identify how these people like to be thanked and what they identify as a gesture of appreciation. Remember that not everyone enjoys receiving an award and that some people might even find it boring or not thoughtful enough. Being able to go above and beyond your client’s expectations will certainly help you score points, but all of your efforts will have been wasted if people don’t feel they’ve been recognized appropriately.