Part of creating an experience for a conference or event is the experience sphere.
The experience sphere covers three elements: the space in which the event/experience takes place, the hosts/co-workers who are there, and the other participants. It is the frame that keeps the event in place.
Here are a few tips on what to consider when designing your experience sphere.
This is where you can easily stimulate all the senses. The space is not necessary a meeting room; it could be out in the woods or in a tent, but no matter where you have your event, you can tickle the senses in the space by
- playing nice lounge music (hearing)
- serving lovely fresh food for maybe a signature cocktail or rum tasting (taste)
- getting your own signature scent (smell)
- giving the participants little ’toys’ to play with while listening (touch)
- showing reading friendly presentations in a beautifully decorated space (sight)
The hosts are usually employees of the company hosting the event and they have to support the experience by showing the participants their undivided attention. The hosts are there for the sake of the participants and represent their company through their behavior. The participants are not an interruption in their work … they ARE their work! Focus should be on being the ultimate hosts – how do you treat your guests?
The other participants
Naturally, the other participants in an event also have an influence on your experience for the single attendee who might have worries like these: “Do they behave like I do?”, “Will i be included or left out?”, “Do I get to utter my opinion?”, “Are there too many or too few other participants?”.
It is difficult for the participant to change the situation if it/the event is not as you expected, so it is the responsibility of the event planner to make sure that the target group is well-defined and well-balanced.
These three elements are interdependent and you need to take them all into consideration when designing your experience. But when they match, they are a match made in heaven.