Engaging your entire audience is the goal of every event planning professional as we meticulously plan and make accommodations for all-inclusive, energizing and exciting events that keep the attention of our entire audience. If you’re engaging in multigenerational event planning, a thorough evaluation of your event staging and presentation methods are even more critical. There’s nothing worse than putting excessive time and money into planning the perfect event, only to look around and realize that half of your audience isn’t paying attention.
The workforce today is made up of vast groups of people falling in all age brackets and generations. The U.S. Census Bureau and other organization may differ slightly in the years of birth for labeling a generation, although the following is a typical representation:
The Traditional Generation – also called the Greatest Generation, consists of older adults who grew up in the ’50s and were born before 1945.
The Baby Boom Generation – refers to people born between 1946 and 1964
Generation X – identified as people born between 1965 to 1979
Generation Y – also called Millennials, typically refers to those born between 1980 to 2002
Like it or not, event professionals today must plan and accommodate for speaking to two or even three diverse groups of people with varying learning styles, skills, and preferences. Here are some tips for success when planning a multigenerational event.
1) Get to Know Your Audience
It’s important to know the various ways that different generations solve challenges and explore opportunities. The Traditional Generation does well with a traditional format such as an informed lecturer and printed materials. Baby Boomers and Gen Xers seem to adapt well to various information channels. Tech loving Gen Y Millennials grew up with the internet and smartphones and digest information quickly with an apt to share more on social media. Gen Yers believe learning should be fun and prefer workshops or smaller group discussions.
Get to know your audience to plan the most appropriate method of forming a true connection that gets, and holds, the attention of all your guests.
2) Establish Visual Identity with Effective Storytelling
Effective storytelling is key to connecting with your audience in any age group. Be sure that your message is relatable to fit into each group on a human level while maintaining your brand identity. People falling into the Traditional and Baby Boomer Generation seem to respond well to facts and figures based on research, whereas tech-savvy Millennials prefer visual messages, videos, infographics, and memes. Gen Xers are more flexible in adapting to the material provided and finding a connection that best suits them.
3) Meet Each Group on Their Level
Once you know the story you want to tell, utilize various channels to gain the attention of your entire audience. Consider integrating traditional media with social media which provides many options to connect with your guests. While the older Traditional Generation and Baby Boomers may do well with printed materials and direct communication, don’t rule out social media for this group either. According to a study by the University of Minnesota, Generational Differences in the Workplace, a whopping 80% of people in these age groups are open to learning new things with 77% efficient computer users. Millennials, of course, are already fluent with e-learning and multiple social media channels and Gen Xers are also comfortable with Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
4) Keep Your Presentation Relevant
You must provide relevant information as the expert on your issues, with recent, up to date information and a way for your audience to link to your mission. Find a way to connect to your entire audience with a common story and work backward to design the specifics of your presentation. People across all generations want to know how they fit in with your mission, how to contribute and be a part of your story.
Production Plus for Captivating and Engaging Events
Appealing to your entire audience with effective multigenerational event planning is critical for an engaging event that connects with and holds the attention of all your guests. Production Plus offers more than 40 years of experience in captivating storytelling, combining experience with tech-savvy event solutions. We are dreamers, creators, and storytellers with a knack for reaching your audience on every level.
Production Plus is a leading event production company, telling spectacular stories that captivate and engage your entire audience. We offer comprehensive event solutions with printed and digital media, scenic constructions, event staging and design to connect with all learning styles. Contact us for more tips on connecting with your audience of any generation and all demographics.