I worked at the Field of Dreams last week, and, as you can tell from this week’s dots, the event is still very top of mind. I have spent the week relaying stories, reading articles, looking at pictures, and generally remaining giddy about my participation in this little moment of history.
It has been easy to do so since the news and social media feed are full of game coverage and personal accounts. Talking about it with friends and people who learn that I was there has allowed me to relive the event and helped me feel that the game really was something special. It has created an afterglow that replicates the joy from the evening and magnifies its impact on me.
I don’t think organizations do enough to intentionally cultivate post-event buzz. While the use of a specific hashtag might be promoted, posting usually occurs during the event instead of after it. As part of your planning, consider what you can do to help those involved remember some of the emotions and key moments once they are back home or in their office. Wouldn’t it be nice on the day after (or ride home) to find a message thanking you for coming and sharing some exclusive content or pictures? Conferences could send emails with a special recording or an extra tip from the special guest. You could have participants write a reminder to themselves and mail it later, incentivize people to post their takeaways, or provide a framework to encourage sharing of key content with others. Many events have a professional photographer and you could make some of those pictures available to others.
It’s one thing to host a great event and have participants leave happy but the real magic occurs when they are still happy days or weeks after returning home. Consider the end of your event to be a period after it technically concludes and work as hard on promoting it afterward as you do on promoting it beforehand.