Here’s the scenario: You are planning to attend a business or training conference; visions of workshops, speakers and socializing start dancing through your head. You will leave the event with dozens of contacts in your smart device and a reinvigorated attitude. But what does the city get from your visit?
Empower Network recently hosted its regional conference in Charlotte, North Carolina, and the event brought a total of $1.36 million to the city. Charlotte was a great location for us to hold an event: It’s a great travel hub with exceptional weather and activities for those who attended the Empower Network event to take advantage of.
When you attend a dinner party or gathering, it’s customary to bring a gift for the host/hostess and, afterward, express thanks and gratitude for a lovely time. If you are planning an event in a different city, you should consider doing the same for your host city. Here are a few ideas to help get you started:
- Include the benefits of the host city in your promotional content about the event. When other companies see this, they may look more closely at the city for their own events or other initiatives, providing a significant boost in public perception of the city.
- Plan an activity that directly affects the city, such as helping a local charity. In addition to the economic boost from your visit, this can help you leave a lasting feel-good impression on the city to linger long after your departure.
- Ensure that your attendees understand what is expected of them as guests of the city. Nothing is worse than leaving a bad impression on your host city.
- Do something unique. For example, instead of simply organizing a conference, make it memorable in some way, such as making it an environmentally sustainable event. This will help to position your host city as a go-to place for others considering something similar and allow the city to market itself the same way. Additionally, by demonstrating environmental leadership, you can garner positive media coverage for your organization and the host city. You can find lists of green conference venues online.
- If you received particularly great service from a local company, such as a caterer or tour bus company, provide the company with a positive review it can use on its website or in publicity materials. You may also wish to encourage attendees to write about their opinions of the venue on travel or business review sites.
- Organize an activity for local businesses or entrepreneurs. You may discover new affiliate marketing opportunities in your host city that you didn’t know about before.
- Lastly, you can put your networking skills to good use by meeting with the Visitor’s Authority or Chamber of Commerce in your host city to find out specifically what they need and how your organization may be able to help.
These kinds of activities can help your host city improve its ranking on lists such as “best cities for business” or “most friendly places for tourists in America,” which in turn helps to attract additional conferences and revenue. That’s quite a gift.
Empower Network is hosting its next big event this year in Orlando, Florida. If you have discovered other ways to be a good corporate partner with host cities, I’d love to hear about them.
As the CEO of Empower Network, LLC. Jonathan is helping tens of thousands enjoy the “Empowered Lifestyle.” Empower Network is a leading affiliate marketing and direct sales company headquartered in St. Petersburg, Florida. Jonathan enjoys travelling, savoring red wine and spending quality time with his wife and puppy.