If you’re planning an event, don’t overlook these factors that can inhibit your attendees from getting all they can from you.

surprisingfactsConferences, expos, and other events are great ways to connect with potential and current customers. If you leverage an event properly, it can make a big impact on your business. In order to do that, however, you have to connect with your audience. If you don’t understand who the attendees are and what they need, you can fail to engage them. Demographics are only one aspect of knowing who your audience is. Here are four surprising things you may not know about attendees that will impact how they receive you.

1.      They are tired. I don’t just mean sleepy; I mean chronically tired. Almost 80 of corporate Americans report that they are sleep deprived. It’s likely that non-corporate employees are just as tired. So what does that mean for your event? If possible, start the event at a time that is considerate of any distances your attendees need to travel. If it’s possible to let people choose a convenient start time, like offering the same session more than once in a day, that would help cater to varying preferences. Additionally, know that too much information will overwhelm the tired person more quickly. Keep things as concise and engaging as possible so you don’t lose your audience.

2.      Comfort makes people happier. Are your attendees sitting? If so, how comfortable are the chairs? Uncomfortable chairs make people less agreeable. It makes sense; if you’re uncomfortable, you’re distracted, and if you sit long enough like that, you become irritable. Provide seating that will stay comfortable for as long as possible, and the attendees will get much more out of your event.

3.      About half a billion fewer people own a toothbrush than a mobile device. We are extremely dependent on mobile technology. This comes as no surprise, but think about how that translates into expectations. Event apps are becoming not just more popular, but also expected. Make sure you are providing a number of ways to incorporate smart phones into your event.

4.      A person can remember 3-4 things at once before feeling overwhelmed. Yes, your event is a day full of new information. However, ease off the gas when you’re introducing a lot of new concepts. Use the tools that help people remember, like repetition and story-telling, and let attendees absorb the information properly before throwing more at them.

Remember: your attendees are human beings who are sensitive to their environment and slave to their limitations as human beings. Make sure you keep these things in mind when planning any event.

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