I attended IAB UK's new event a few weeks back, Nonference. The organisers' goal was that it wouldn't be a traditional conference but rather a more interactive event where the audience is involved. 

From sessions where Integral Ad Science delivered a fake news quiz littered with Trump quotes to Mindshare's Alexa-run session on gender bias in language and voice assistance, the speakers and audience alike were challenged to communicate in a different way. Some speakers asked attendees to share their thinking, some encouraged the audience to test and play with new tech. Dunnhumby even had a data science lab serving test tube drinks! It was a creative way to communicate the company's business offering.

Starcom's Amy Kean and Graffiti Life took interactivity to another level where attendees participated in an art class. Not only did this session ensure we worked in a team, but it encouraged us to think about the variety of skills different people bring to creativity. We had also created a masterpiece on the walls of Tobacco Dock by the end!

We all learn from events in different ways but with many of us sat at a desk all day, actively participating and learning by doing can be effective.  

Next time you are considering your brand's presence at an event, think about pushing the boundaries. Is the best way to communicate your message through a keynote presentation delivered in the traditional fashion? Or could you add an interactive element to build rapport with the audience?

Events are an opportunity to bring some theatre and make an impact on the audience. What do you want the audience to remember? What is the key message you need to deliver? This is critical to a successful speaker programme strategy and are some of the questions we should ask ourselves when preparing for the stage.