Wanting to treat your group to the ultimate "thank you" by throwing an event they'll never forget? Here are a just a few tips on how to make that happen:
Exclusive Locations and Properties
Set the tone for your event by choosing a venue that sets the experience apart from any other. Exclusive locations, such as private homes and mansions, are always great options for a truly unique venue choice. Have your guests enjoy cocktails while overlooking a view only seen from an otherwise private estate, or host dinner on the picturesque grounds of a palatial property. Your guests will feel as though they were treated to something special, out of the ordinary, and unlike anything anyone else has experienced.
Another creative alternative: host your event at a venue not normally used for events. Transform an abandoned warehouse into the ultimate club house, host a reception amongst the cars at a luxury dealership, or treat your guests to dinner on a helipad overlooking the city. With venues such as these, you've already set the stage for what will be a memorable event.
Unique Activities and Experiences
Now maybe you're wanting your guests to experience something special and don't want to do the normal cocktail party or dinner. Try incorporating unique entertainment or activities into your guest experience: invite a celebrity chef to do a private tasting or cooking class for your group; surprise everyone with a special guest appearance or performance; schedule a behind the scenes tour of a studio; or do a buyout of a local attraction, such as an amusement park or golf course.
Companies wanting to engage shareholders or clients may even want to take this opportunity to showcase their product by giving guests the opportunity to see, experience, or purchase their product in ways the average consumer is unable to. Open your store for a private invite-only shopping event, host cocktails at your factory and do a tour of the facility while updating guests on your company's next big project, or host an event where guests get to test drive your latest product.
If you're willing and able to travel, you may also want to consider hosting an off-site retreat. Booking a hotel or all-inclusive resort that not only has meeting space for you and your guests to gather, but also includes activities and nearby attractions for guests to enjoy either as part of your pre-planned itinerary or at their leisure is a perfect way to treat your group to a one-of-a-kind experience. Choose a venue such as the Miraval Arizona Resort & Spa, which has a host of already established group retreat packages, or plan your own itinerary at the location of your choosing.
Last, but certainly not least, you'll want to make sure your guests not only walk away from your event with great memories, but also with something tangible to remind them of the fun times they had and of how valuable they are to you and your company. Branded company gifts, for example, are an easy go-to solution, but adding in a hand-written thank you note gives a personalized touch to an otherwise generic party favor.
For larger groups or those with a more substantial budget, doing a gift suite and hiring a company such as Cultivate Premium Corporate Gifts to setup and allow guests to hand-pick the gift of their choosing is also a new trend that is sure to be a hit. Want to give your guests something truly unique? Give the gift of an experience, such as a hot air balloon ride or dinner cruise, by working with a gift experience company that can provide you with specific gift ideas or offer gift cards for the recipients to choose their preferred experience at a later date.
Regardless of what you decide to do for your event, always remember the purpose behind it. As an incentive event, you want your guests to feel valued and eager to continue to support you, your company, and your goals. "Wow" your guests with the event of a lifetime and they'll surely show their support in kind.