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Content Manager: Raina Julies Management Accountant: Deidre Musha 5 Audience Engagement
Contributor: Esra Overberg Business Manager: Lodewyk van der Walt What venues need to do to
Copy Editor: Brenda Bryden General Manager, Magazines: Jocelyne Bayer attract events and ensure
Digital Editor: Stacey Visser future success.
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H ow to make an event truly Adam Azor, senior vice president of brainstorming creative and novel ways
memorable? That’s the question integrated and digital marketing at Jack to get delegates active because moving
that often runs through every Morton Worldwide, shares this idea of increases productivity and creates positive
event organiser’s mind. Granted, engagement being deﬁned by a desired event recall. This philosophy has made The
there are many variables at play, but the outcome. “For me, audience engagement is Forum the first in the world to be awarded
biggest factor for success is interaction: creating an interactive narrative with your the status of ‘Gold Healthy Venue’.”
that’s what delegates value above all. They attendees to create a desired outcome. This
want to be involved and actively participate can be through practical experience, a two- Indaba Hotel: Sharon Hunink, sales and
in the discussions. This is where audience way dialogue, or increasing via technology.” marketing manager at the Indaba Hotel,
engagement steps in. says that what makes their conferencing
SECRETS TO SUCCESS facilities a preferred venue is its impressive
For many event managers, audience selection of conference rooms and
engagement is their number one goal. In a heavily-traded market, venues need to 250-seater auditorium with banqueting
An event with no engagement probably provide something extra, a “wow” factor, to facilities for up to 800 people. “We are the
doesn’t have a healthy future. Audience ensure their success. Some of SA’s venues perfect ‘home away from home’ venue.
engagement means different things to that are achieving successful audience 15km north of the busy Sandton CBD
different people. Venues spoke to two engagement share their secrets. and 2km from the hustle and bustle of
experts in the industry to ﬁnd out how they Fourways/Monte Casino Business Precinct,
deﬁne audience engagement. The Forum: “Sitting is more dangerous but are still able to maintains the peace and
than smoking, kills more people than HIV, tranquillity of a country-resort because of
Jason Allan Scott, author of the best- and is more treacherous than parachuting. our 17 hectares of bushveld gardens, dams
selling “Eventrepreneur Series” books and We are sitting ourselves to death. The and landscaped gardens.”
host of The Guest List podcast, recognises chair is out to kill us,” says James Levine,
the subjectivity of audience engagement, a professor of medicine at the prestigious JSE: The JSE offers an eventing
saying that “the deﬁnition would be Mayo Clinic in the USA. experience which has an exclusive
different for everyone you ask. auditorium and spacious atrium for
“When we read that, it was pretty scary,” flexible seating as well as a media hub that
“But to me, it is twofold: engagement is says Nthabeleng Lentsoane, marketing houses TV and radio studios for business
the attendee of the event doing the thing manager at the Forum, “so we took action media brands including SABC, Nielsen
you want them to do. A piece of engaging and were one of the ﬁrst to pioneer standing and Power FM. “So if you’re hosting
content at an event, therefore, is something conferences and walking receptions in South client engagements, company results
that successfully inspires the action it was Africa. We encourage physical activities such announcements or a market open at our
designed to instigate; but secondly, it is also as yoga or walking as part of any meeting venue it’s just a few convenient steps to
about what the attendee wants and or conference. One of our mottos is ‘Sitting the studios for interviews with the media
what they walk away with after the Kills, Moving Heals’ and our experienced with the option of your guests watching ›
event is over.” team of co-ordinators is constantly
ENGAGE, EXCITE AND
Audience engagement specialist
Esra Overberg unpacks what venues need
to do to attract events and ensure their
Venues are always TOOLS TO ASSIST the audience can then like, comment on or Images: webSubstance/istockphoto.com, wavebreakmedia/istockphoto.com
looking for meaningful share to their social networks.
and recorded feedback. Apart from providing the “wow” factor, • Buzzmaster is an audience interaction
event venues also need to engage, excite and app with a difference — it comes with
live simultaneous broadcasts from one of entertain attendees, doing so will make a big “BuzzMasters”, real people (journalists or
our venues,” says Carol Crozier, manager: difference to satisfaction levels. But how can experienced event managers) who moderate
Company Services at the JSE. audience participation be facilitated, how the audience responses in real-time, curating
does a venue create a buzzing atmosphere the most interesting comments and stories.
11 Alice Lane: Being able to offer and how does it know if the attendees They can also hit the audience with new
potential clients great location is still one of are satisfied? The most obvious answer is questions, helping to facilitate the session and
the key differentiators in today’s eventing feedback and measurement. Venues rely on create a buzz.
space. “This is one of the key benefits of the feedback from clients using their conference • Catchbox is not an app, but a physical
state-of-the-art auditorium and meeting facilities and are always looking for microphone, the world’s first throwable
rooms located at 11 Alice Lane, which is meaningful and recorded feedback. wireless microphone. When someone has
found in the heart of Sandton within the area a question, the presenter simply throws the
known as ‘Africa’s Richest Square There are several tech-savvy solutions Catchbox, engaging the participant in a fun
Mile’ and arguably the epicentre of to farm and measure healthy feedback game of catch.
commerce on the African continent, the and translate it into audience engagement • Live Insights is a mobile polling and
venue offers supporting services including success as well as tools to facilitate audience feedback app by QuickMobile that lets
video and telephone conference facilities, participation. These can be used as an the audience vote, rate or answer multiple-
catering, printing and IT assistance,” says everyday feedback solution built into choice questions from their phones. As well
Marius Horn, the venue’s operations venues’ CRM systems to provide real-time as being able to create questions ahead of
administration manager. voting and polling analytics from check-ins time, presenters can launch a poll on the
to problematic ablution facilities and service fly, facilitating a truly interactive session
The Inanda Club: Be it for business delivery on any day, allowing venues to and enabling presenters to tailor their
or leisure, the warm hospitality of the immediately rectify where needed. presentations according to the audience’s
Inanda Club staff, attention to detail and real-time response.
personalised service all combine to ensure The use of such tools as listed below can • Power Vote equips participants with
that our guest’s time with us will always be built into venue rental packages as a individual voting keypads. The keypads
be a memorable experience, says Paul feedback service to events managers and enable participants to respond to
Oosthuizen, general manager of the clients. Audiences always have something to multiple-choice questions by selecting
Inanda Club. say, and these tools will provide them with letters or numbers. The responses can be
the means to do so. displayed in real-time, making it easy to
“The Club offers a number of function • Mentimeter is a mobile voting app that gauge sentiment.
venues including a 500-seater ballroom • Engagenow lets you design attractive-
and five smaller meeting rooms with displays results live with real-time graphs looking polls and quizzes that empower
spectacular views of Sandton that can be and charts. It can handle over 30 000 the audience to interact with the big screen
used individually or combined into one large votes per minute and offers different during an event. It can also be used to
room, as well as a large polo field perfect for question/response formats such as crowdsource questions or open up chat
family days or corporate events.” multiple-choice, open-ended, rating around the event to spark debate.
scale and word clouds. It can be styled • EventScribe this mobile event app has
according to a company’s branding. numerous functions including allowing
• Glisser allows presenters to share slides participants to ask questions, post
to the audience’s mobile devices, which comments and connect on a private social
networking platform. Attendees
can access presentation slides, which
they can annotate and then share
with other delegates.
• Slido enables the audience to ask questions
and vote for the ones they like the most.
Slido will help to prioritise the discussion
topics for conference Q&As, panel discussions
or all-hands meetings and polls the audience
in real-time, thereby providing
RATHER MEET IN MAURITIUS
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to deliver a unique, world-class event with a Mauritius has a tropical climate, with warm Mauritius. The campaign is all about
touch of island-style elegance and ﬂair. weather all year round. The best months to rewarding you for keeping Mauritius top
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major cities and visa-free for South African meetings, incentives, conferences, events
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Mauritius is fast becoming one of Africa’s “cyclone season” and may not always
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an abundance of scenic beauty, hidden host of other group activities to engage in, June 2019, runs until 31 March 2020.
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friendly staff, and the additional activities on For more information: to Mauritius! Remember, all conﬁrmed
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ACTIVITIES www.ratherbeinmauritius.co.za the website.
The island boasts a wide variety of activities Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority
that can be speciﬁcally geared around MICE SA Representative:
groups, ranging from golf to adventure sports Janet de Kretser / Philippa Piguet
such as quad biking, trekking, mountain Meropa Communications
biking, trail running, zip lining, kite surﬁng, Tel: +27 11 506 7300
parasailing, canoeing and sky SdLiOviWngin. the City Email: [email protected]
12 V E N U E S