It Makes Sense to Use the Senses!

Sheila Bryant | August 18, 2016

Event planning is a lot of hard work. So, it would be a shame to sweat over creating an event that will soon become a distant memory and ultimately forgotten. To make it memorable and engraved in people’s mind just as much as their wedding day, you need to evoke emotion.

This requires engaging all of the senses for each portion of your event. Touch, sight, sound, taste and smell all enhance personal emotional experiences. Think about a previous event you attended that was memorable and evoked emotion. Was it the balloon drop during the Flaming Lips Concert while your favorite song played in the background or was it watching the launch of a bunch of hot air balloons fill the sky?

So here are a few considerations that run through my head as I plan a memorable event.

Envision your event space. Colors affect mood. Are the objects in the space organized? How does the lighting in the room make the attendees feel? Sound communicates ideas and expressions. Is the sound, happy, relaxed and calm? How can your music choices create sentimental meaning for the attendees? Does the music specifically touch the demographics and are you offering enough variety to cover a mixed audience? Is there a variety of textures and taste for your food and beverage selections?

Evoking emotion does not have to be expensive. It could be as simple as a video collage of employees sharing their passions, a great speaker, or the way a CEO presents to his audience. You should constantly think about how to incorporate the senses and evoke emotion into all areas of your event, whether large or small. You will be amazed at the ideas you generate by incorporating this way of thinking in your planning sessions.

Another way to make an event memorable is to have creative consistency and a theme that resonates with your attendees. The whole goal is for attendees to walk away with a message they will not forget. Budgets may be tight, but this is definitely an area where you do not want to cut. Regardless of what the event is for -- training, morale, team building -- there needs to be a theme holding the event together and guiding all other aspects of planning. All of your graphic styles, activities, content and so on will consistently come to life as you support your theme.

Creative minds and a creative team are imperative for a successful event where the attendees take your message home for a lifetime.