Event Trends and Ideas for 2016

Creating an Event Experience to Remember

event trends

Event managers work extremely hard to create memorable event experiencesfor their clients.  Whether it’s a corporate event, wedding, birthday party, or any other celebration, event managers hone every detail from entertainment right down to the color of the linen napkins.  They scour the Internet and their networking connections for the newest, most innovative event ideas to continuously exceed the expectations of their clients.

While trends come and go, fads will fade away, there seems to be one trend that is continuing across all events and that is the “designer” event.  Clients no longer want cookie cutter, standard ideas and entertainment.  They want event managers to create an experience for the attendees to remember forever.  Events that will stand out among all others, not just by the decorations, but an interactive, engaging experience.

Event Trends 

For corporate events, many companies are looking for team building activities to be included in events.  While destination meetings used to be popular, more often they are staying closer to home, within the US due to the decline of the euro. This gives corporate event managers an opportunity to spend a little more on the activities and generating a team atmosphere in which corporations can celebrate or inspire their employees. 

Corporations want event managers to create an entire brand experience, designed especially for them with their mottoes, missions, and goals in mind for the event.

  Technology can play a huge role in these events.  Corporate event managers are trying to build events that continuously keep the attendees guessing, engaged, and surprised with each activity.  Using iPads, Smart boards, and even creating an app for the event all add a unique touch to the event.

Gen Y as a whole is seeking experiences rather than material things.

  It is proven in their gift giving trends over the last few years, and carries over into their professional lives as well that this generation wants intangible versus tangible takeaways.  Swag bags are not for this up and coming generation of young professionals.  Skydiving, rock climbing, concerts, laser tag are all examples of what these new corporate suits desire.  They don't want surface connections, like getting to know you through a simple how-do-you-do exercise.  They want deeper connections, like modeling a meeting after Patrick Lencioni's “Five Dysfunctions of a Team”, with deep, meaningful and sometimes emotional connections.

The same goes for the social event planning scene.  Weddings are becoming more and more unique, with non-traditional ceremonies and technology as front running trends for 2016.  Skype and other live streaming videos are becoming standard for the far away guests that cannot attend the special day. 

Couples are foregoing traditional for enjoying the experience of getting married.  Before, there would be 200 person receptions in which the bride and groom wouldn't be able to enjoy the day, as they walked around thanking each and every guest.  Now, weddings are generally smaller in guest count and instead of cake cutting and first dance ceremonies, it becomes a show for the groomsmen or bridesmaids to showcase awesome dance moves or a comedy scene.

Birthdays and other social celebrations are riddled with pop culture themes.  Instead of having a children's party with Minion themed paper plates and decorations, event managers are creating Minion activities.  Have the guests (dressed up as Minions, of course!) choosing the villain want to follow, with guest appearances from all the bad guys and ladies, makes for an interactive fun experience for the kids.  Pictures, social media threads, and Skyping in the grandparents from Florida are all ideas to make the day special and unique for the birthday child.

The challenge facing event managers in 2016 is to be able to be more creative and think out of the box of tradition.  The truth about event trends is people are seeking the thrill of experiences, wanting the excitement and surprise that only unique, custom designed events can offer.

  Are you up to the challenge?