Attracting millennials to your meeting or event is becoming more and more important as time goes on. Why? According to the Pew Research Center, 33% of millennials are currently in the workforce, and those numbers will only continue to grow. In fact, by 2020, they will make up nearly 50% of the workforce.
Determining how to reach this important group will pay dividends now and even more so in the future.
Recently, Dan Schawbel, author of the New York Times best-seller Promote Yourself: The New Rules for Career Success, wrote a white paper, “How Millennials See Meetings Differently,” which offers an overview of the millennial generation as well as tips for attracting them to your event. We’ve outlined a few of the tips below as well as how to connect with destination experts that work with planners in attracting attendees to their meeting or event.
First… who are millennials? Millennials are the generation born between 1977 and 1992, currently placing them between the ages of 23 and 39. Typical characteristics of this generation include that they are technologically savvy, they take delight in looking for adventure, and they enjoy collaborating.
- Make your event website social.
Millennials are technologically savvy and enjoy being social. Make sure your website reflects that by not just including the meeting basics of event agendas and forms. Allow attendees to interact by including social media widgets, enabling comments, and featuring articles and blog posts from the speakers being featured at the conference.
- Provide opportunities for networking.
According to Schawbel, 8 in 10 millennials enjoy events that have peer-to-peer networking opportunities. When crafting your event pre-registration forms, be sure to include those opportunities in the forms and online so that millennials will be more likely to attend.
- Include social media in your event planning.
Besides including widgets on your online registration pages, be sure to remain social throughout the event. Planners can create a hashtag for the event and arrange to have tweets and posts using the hashtag displayed on projection screens throughout the meeting. Planners can also provide updates throughout the event on social media.
- Customize learning experiences.
Schawbel states that 85% of millennials want interesting and fun educational programs. Therefore, think of your event as a live, on-demand conference. Be sure conference information is available on mobile devices and allow them to personalize their agendas, maximizing their ability to be involved.
- Maximize the destination.
Research shows that millennials want to go to cities where there is public transportation and a lot of activities. They may not be drawn to meetings or events where there is nothing to do around the event location.
When looking to maximize your attendance in any destination, be sure to work with the local convention & visitors bureau (CVB). The CVB staff are destination experts who are adept at working with meeting planners from the start to find the best fit for their meeting. No organization has stronger connections and better destination knowledge than the CVB. It’s the CVB’s mission to help planners find not only the right fit for a planner’s meeting, but to also help create the best meeting experience for attendees.
To connect with a CVB planner at more than 150 top meeting destinations, visit empowerMINT.com and search for the destination(s) you are interested in. You can quickly connect with a destination expert who is available to answer any of your questions.