June 08, 2021
By Felicia Asiedu

When people attend professional events, the benefits must ultimately outweigh the cost of attending – this includes both the time and potentially the money needed to attend the event. Attendees expect to take away learnings and new ideas they can apply at work as well as new contacts they can connect with after the event. And, to sweeten the deal further, a nice little gift or two wouldn’t go amiss!

As an event organiser, creating great event experiences certainly requires you to focus on providing amazing content and moments to remember. But going the extra mile to pick the perfect gift for your event attendees can often create positive lasting impressions, thanks to attendees using their gift over and over again, either at home or at work. Through “the perfect gift” your brand lives on and is a constant reminder of who you are and the quality and care you provide. Conversely, a lame gift often ends up in the bin at best, but worse than this, could also result in attendees telling other people just how bad it was.

Everyone loves special treatment and your event attendees are no different. So here are 5 simple ways to pick the perfect gift for your attendees:

#5 Make it Relevant


person holding gift behind their back ready to present it to other person

First and foremost, your attendee gift should make sense. You wouldn’t want them to leave them scratching their heads with a confusing gift, right? For instance, you might decide to hand out corporate gifts like mobile chargers, moleskin notebooks and card holders. But you should first identify your attendee persona. Is a more corporate gift right for your audience? Will it be a gathering of mid-level corporate professionals, the C-Suite or university professors and students? An appropriate gift befitting the specific persona will show that you care about the details.

Remember: Don’t hesitate to invest in quality gifts for speakers at your conference.

#4 Personalise It

gifts being wrapped

Adding a personal touch to the gift will make the attendee feel more appreciated. A personalised memento with the attendee information engraved on it goes a long way in building relationships. Or you could simply include a handwritten note that includes their name or company name to show that a level of care has gone into the gift. You can also customise the gift using your own company information thus providing free brand visibility.

Remember: Adding a personal note with the gift does a great job if you don’t want to spend on engravings and monograms.

#3 Make Sure It Is Affordable

hands spelling out "value" and "price" on chalkboard

Spending on gifts and giving a special experience to your attendees is great, no doubt. However, before you come up with grand, unique gift ideas, be sure to lock down your gift budget. Within your budget define the amount you need, who is receiving the gift, and time by which it is needed. Shipping and customisation can add up, so beware!

Keep in mind that if you go for an overly expensive gift, it could create pressure on you to have something of the same calibre for your future events.

Remember: Set a separate budget for the speakers, special guests and general participants and decide your gifts accordingly.

#2 Keep it size appropriate

golden ball balancing on one side three silver balls on the other side of a scale

Gifts are given to attendees before, during, and after the event. If there are multiple sessions scheduled in a day, then make sure the gift(s) can be carried around easily. You wouldn’t want to burden and potentially annoy your audience with all sorts of bulky handouts, right? One simple way to avoid this is to have a corporate gift bag with all sorts of goodies. But don’t compromise on the quality of the bag as that will inevitably result in disappointment for the attendee. A great event should always have top-notch quality in all aspects!

Remember: Try to select a gift that aligns with the needs and values of your attendee         

#1 It should be attractive!

floral pattern

Obvious statement, but an important one. Presentation is a crucial factor in creating a lasting impression on the attendee. Why do you think the iPhone has such a remarkable fan following around the world? The tech is certainly a big reason, but the form factor is an even bigger one –the sleek and sophisticated look and the feel of a premium brand in your hands creates a sense of euphoria for the user. In the same way, a gift that is high on aesthetics and presented in an elegant and tasteful manner will leave your attendees feeling upbeat and make them return for future events as well!

Remember: Appearances do matter.

Giving the right attendee gift is just one of the ways you can overcome the challenge of providing excellent attendee experiences. Getting to know your attendees better will give you insights on how you can keep your attendees engaged and coming back for more. Download your copy of Inside the Mind of the Attendee today to understand the desires of 3,000 global event attendees.

Felicia Asiedu

Felicia Asiedu

Felicia is a Content Marketing Manager at Cvent. She has over 10 years’ sales and marketing experience in technology, having worked for a combination of managed hosting and data centre providers and SaaS-based technology companies. She is passionate about marketers pushing the boundaries of technology to make their lives easier whilst personalising experiences through both digital and offline channels.

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