Insider tips: a breakdown of SHIFT 2019 (or any event) by attendee types

Events sprout like mushrooms after rain. This is due to more and more growth and large companies investing a part of their marketing and sales budgets in event attendance and in finding potential customers, face-to-face or digitally through event marketing. However, the number of corporate events gathering more than 1,000 people is still limited in both Finland and Europe. A corporate event can only succeed in a year-to-year market in competition with free-to-air events if it brings significant value to the attendees. Only this way will these events continue to play an important role in companies’ growth stories.

In my experience, event attendees can be roughly divided into three different attendee types:


1. The Networking Professional

The deal-hunting type who loves networking. Business cards change hands and matchmaking apps beep steadily in fifteen-minute f2f meetings. This type’s LinkedIn and email fill up with suggestions for new business collaboration possibilities after the event, and the Networking Professional is sure to follow up on them. Time spent at the event itself, with all its side events, is utilized to the maximum. This type stays where all the other attendees stay, sings karaoke until dawn and is still there to listen to the first keynote the next morning.


2. The Business and Self Developer

This type doesn’t know what Brella is, but they know all the SHIFT speaker bios by heart and have been to listen to all the Finnish keynote speakers before, several times. Attendees of this type buy their tickets for the content of the event, i.e. the program and the workshops, and are certainly feeling more refreshed after the event than the Networking Professional. The inspiration and learning they take away with them and share with their own networks and customers is directly measurable in profits.


3. The Influencer

The attendees whose company social media profiles are brimming with excitement about the upcoming recreation day filled with business prospects. This type takes full advantage of their attendance and makes sure to announce their company’s presence at spot X, well in advance and in several channels. The Influencer is an event marketing professional who knows how to utilize the full potential visibility through organizing their own side events or inviting their customers to join them at the event.


In the last three years, SHIFT has seen all the above attendee types. How do you attend events?

The author is SHIFT’s original crew as Chief Commercial Officer, who, after four years, is shifting to new challenges to advance the event attendance of more and more companies through digital marketing. Follow Sini’s new journey with Harva Marketing and send her a connection request.