Company and Client Appreciation Conference
A corporate client hired us to support the logistics of their annual company and client appreciation program. Headquartered in Japan and with offices throughout Asia, Europe, and the United States, the organization alternates between national and international destinations.
The previous year’s conference in Europe had been the most successful one to date, with elaborate meals and unique venues for networking opportunities. Rated higher than any previously produced, this event created a personalized and individualized experience for the attendees. In short, company and attendee expectations were set at an extremely high level.
Attendees included corporate sales and upper management, as well as VIP clients—approximately a 50 percent split between the two groups. The company uses this annual gathering to introduce new products, extend gratitude and appreciation to existing clientele, and create networking opportunities for the entire group.
We were engaged to provide the following services only 10 months before the conference. The destination had already been chosen.
- Conference hotel research
- Contract negotiations
- Pre-planning and on-site logistical support
- Room block management
- Post-convention bill reconciliation
- Provide a unique and highly personalized event for VIP clients and executive staff from around the world.
- Exceed expectations set by the previous year’s conference and special events, when they were truly “wowed” by every aspect of the guest experience.
- Incorporate various Japanese customs and traditions, while still capturing the heart and spirit of Washington, D.C.
- Assist with developing a budget although the destination was already selected and some costs were unavoidable. We proposed a preliminary budget in the early stages of the planning process, with an understanding that specific areas could be well financed. However, other line items were far short of what would be needed to accomplish the meeting goals.
Create a positive first impression:
Because the hotel is the first stop for guests, it sets the stage for a positive experience. Too large of hotel is impersonal, but too small and they may feel overwelmed with unwanted attention. After a detailed analysis of the company’s goals for this event, we had the information needed to secure a hotel that provided a welcoming and friendly environment. The hotel was highly experienced in hosting top-level executives and international clientele and embraced the nuances specific to various cultures.
Don’t compete with the past:
Instead of competing with the resounding success of the previous year's event, we focused our efforts on creating unique experiences that highlighted the destination, while being true to the culture of the organization. We collaborated with the client to customize menus, entertainment and specialty tours and worked to ensure the guest experience was enhanced not just with amenities, but with personalized service displaying attention to detail without being intrusive.
Stay within budget:
Determining budget goals are always a challenge. If an organization selects a destination before considering the range of financial implications, there can be a disconnect between the vision for the event, expectations set by the success of the previous year and reality of the budget. We developed a budget that we continually monitored and negotiated contracts to get the best return and value.
There is nothing greater than the feeling of “hitting it out of the ballpark.” To quote our client, “Our attendees were very happy about the event and it was actually the best workshop we ever had in the U.S. On behalf of our entire team, I’d like to thank you and your event planners for the greatest help during the event. Without your support, this great event never would have happened. We would love to work with you and your team again.”
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