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Corporate Entertainment: An Expert’s Guide

Looking for ways to cut back on expenses is always on the agenda of the Finance department. During the annual strategy planning for the following year’s company budget, they usually zone in on a default list of variable costs. And almost always, among the top considerations for the chopping block would be the corporate event entertainment budget. The unspoken rationale is this: fun is non-essential. Yet Richard Branson, one of the world’s top business visionaries, disagrees. For him, “more than any other element, fun is the secret of Virgin’s success.” Try as we might, it’s difficult to argue with success. If fun is critical to success, shouldn’t we be serious about having fun at work一and prioritizing entertainment events?

What corporate entertainment is all about

Corporate entertainment is the kind of entertainment designed for exclusive company events and business occasions for the enjoyment of employees, clients, corporate guests, and other stakeholders. A variety of corporate events require entertainment. These include sales conventions, mid-year conferences, Christmas parties and other celebrations, product launches, even marketing campaigns and sales blitzes.

Why invest in corporate entertainment

To maximize resources, companies need to be strategic by investing their precious energy, time, and money in corporate activities that make a significant impact. Here are some reasons why entertainment for corporate events should be on that priority list:

It builds relationships 

Shared experiences bring people closer together — fun-filled moments break down walls. When staff and clients alike are enjoying themselves and letting loose, conversations are more spontaneous and genuine. Deeper connectedness at a more personal level enhances teamwork.

It shows that you’re committed to your relationships  

Taking time to focus your company’s energies directly on the employees through fun and entertainment shows them that they are critical to the success of the company, and just as important as the company’s products and business strategies.

It motivates employees 

Adding an exciting, high-profile element like a celebrity entertainer to your sales incentive and achievement events helps to motivate salespeople to work their hardest, meet their sales quotas, and qualify to attend these exclusive events.

How to decide on the right type of corporate entertainment

There are many entertainment ideas for corporate events to choose from and pairing the right concept with the right need is critical to the overall success of both the entertainment and the event.  Focusing on these top three considerations will help you maximize success:

Determine the purpose of your corporate event

Matching the specific nature of the event, the predetermined success metrics for the event, and the demographics of your audience to the right entertainment/entertainer is critical.

For instance, it’s clear that hiring a world-famous string quartet for an adrenaline-fueled salesforce of 25- to 30-year-olds would be the wrong choice for that audience. However, that same string quartet could be perfect for an audience of 40- to 60-year-old neurosurgeons who appreciate the quartet’s precision, nuance, and rigorous discipline.

The same consideration must be given to choosing the right entertainer to associate with your new product at the launch event. Picking the wrong entertainer could confuse your audience. They might think: “Why is Snoop Dogg performing at this baby food launch?”  However, making the right choice of entertainer for a certain product could greatly enhance the profile and success potential for the product.

Decide on the budget

There are many factors to consider when choosing entertainment for your event. Budget is chief among them. You may not have a six-figure budget available to afford celebrity entertainers. There are many “headliner” acts who tour nationally, yet these performers are not necessarily household names, and thus come at a more affordable price. That said, these national headliners still command more money than the very best local and popular dance bands, comics, novelty acts, etc. However, some of these lesser-known, local acts are absolutely fantastic. They are just not famous yet!

What matters here is the prestige factor:  Do you need to impress with famous names on your stage?  Or do you simply need to guarantee a great show? A great show can be delivered for $50K as easily as for $150K or $1.5M.

Consider the audience demographics 

In today’s increasingly dynamic workplace where both senior executive and entry-level positions are filled by an exciting mix of baby boomers, millennials, and Gen-Xers (and not necessarily in that order), the corporate event planner will need to focus on booking corporate entertainment that will delight and connect with each demographic. No matter how well-produced your corporate entertainment event is, if it is a performer your audience does not connect with, it will be akin to a firework that fails to go off一both disappointing and expensive.

How to get the most out of your corporate event entertainment

Consider these top tips to get the most bang out of your corporate entertainment buck:

Know your audience

Be mindful of both your audience demographics and the entertainment preferences of the attendees. A quick pre-event survey can help ensure that your entertainment ideas match your audience’s definition of fun and remain within the domain of “cool.”

Cue the view

For indoor events, look out for built-in structures of the venue that may obstruct your audience’s view of the stage. In cases like these, be creative with the stage location. Better yet, if it is still an option, switch venues.

Engage through the stage

Tie the company’s brand and message into the entertainment. From the speeches and actors to the colors of the costumes to natural product placement, watch for opportunities to communicate your corporate message creatively and consistently.

Go local when you can

Hiring local talents, such as home-grown bands and variety performers, for your corporate entertainment speaks of your strong commitment to supporting your community. This is not just great for public relations, it also eases up on the logistical pressures of your production.

Trust the experts

Avail yourself of the services of event entertainment companies. Partnering with a corporate events agency for your company’s entertainment needs will save you precious time better spent on planning corporate strategies and achieving sales targets. You can leverage their expertise and experience to suggest the best corporate entertainment ideas and ensure that your company’s spirit and message will be conveyed and indelibly imprinted in the minds of your event attendees. In the long run, getting the services of a professional events organization will prove more cost-efficient and effective than a DIY solution. After all, it takes more than the best of intentions to come up with thrilling corporate entertainment that informs, delights, and makes a lasting impression.

Final Thoughts  

Any company aiming for the highest level of success must incorporate fun as a strategy to nurture their employees’ overall wellbeing and strengthen client relationships. A corporate entertainment event is a fail-safe, can’t-miss way towards that end. Because of their importance, make sure your entertainment productions deliver by tapping the services of professional corporate event experts. As Dr.Seuss said, “It is fun to have fun, but you have to know how.”

We’re confident that we can absolutely do just that — and more! With our expertise gleaned from decades-long partnerships with top corporations who trust us with their product launches, sales conferences, and many other key events, you are sure to be in good hands. Give us a call today and let yourself relax as we produce the best event experience for you.

 

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