Low turnout at your event?

Published On: 19 June 2023| 717 words| Categories: Blogs|

As an organisation, how do you attract attendees more to a physical or hybrid GMM?

Empty chairs, low attendance, and participants leaving quickly. Do you also notice that it is becoming increasingly difficult to involve participants in a physical or hybrid GMM?

Last year, everything seemed much simpler: the world opened up again and people were itching to get back in physical contact. Participant turnout was also high for members’ and shareholders’ meetings; members were happy to be meeting again physically in person, and curious as to what the organisation had done during the pandemic and what the future held for the organisation.

This year seems different: ‘normal’ life has resumed and people seem to be very busy. The turnouts for this year’s meetings have fallen drastically compared to last year. As an organisation, you naturally want to keep members interested and involved in the organisation.

What have we seen recently?

As the technical partner of organisations that organise physical GMMs, we, as well as our customers, notice that the turnout is low. We also notice that lots of meetings are still only broadcasting. The annual figures, the policy plans (which are only briefly voted on); everything gets put into a presentation. This comes across as monotonous and members do not feel fully involved in the GMM. A simple meeting where information is only broadcast is no longer of this time.

At meetings where there was a higher turnout, the client organised a full programme.

One of the regular customers organises a talk show every year, for example. By creating a new and interesting theme every year, they make the programme attractive for their members. Another of our customers provided a day programme filled with knowledge sessions and workshops where they mainly looked into the future. This was new and ensured that members were curious about the new setup.

Both customers also provided an extensive meal; this in combination with the workshops and talk shows, they created a ‘fun element’ (something fun/ different/ new) and a ‘networking element’ (a chance to meet other people).

What do we advise?

Integrate the GMM in a full day programme or afternoon programme. Try to create more value with more content and networking opportunities. This way you ensure that you increase the desire to attend the meeting. The value of the event rises – and the participant comes in for something worth their while and not just for an hour and a half presentation of the annual figures that could have been sent by email.

How do you go about doing this then?

Turn a standard GMM into a valuable experience. Experiences can be strong pull factors for attracting participants to an event. Do something new, do something different, and create an experience for the participants. To the right are a few examples of adding value to a meeting:

Don’t forget: traveling costs time

Often participants have to travel for quite some time to get to a location. This not only costs time and money – that many participants don’t have, but is also not very responsible when it comes to the environment. The Co2 emissions created by travelling in general is part of the larger problem. Within the events industry, we also need to be thinking about sustainable solutions. Read more about sustainability in the events industry.

It is, therefore, advised to organise a hybrid or online event. That way you take the planet into account and lower the barrier for a participant to join your event. There is a good chance that there will be fewer cancellations! Read here for 5 tips for creating a sustainable event.

How can we help you?



+31 85  76 02 560