Designing Events with Empathy

What makes an event successful? Meeting revenue goals and filling seats matters — but those metrics don’t tell us anything about brand loyalty, audience satisfaction, or attendee return rates. For any business or brand who wants to do more than host one fantastic event, instead building a dedicated audience who feels seen and cared about, empathy is the secret weapon. 

Expanding our definition of success should motivate us to design our events for engagement over attendance. We want seats to be filled, of course — but we want them to be filled with the right people and we want those right people to feel like they’ve landed right where they are meant to be. 

The Power of Empathy

Technology is evolving faster than ever, and as event planners, it’s easy to fall into the pattern of seeking to provide the biggest and most advanced experiences for attendees. Without thought, we can also end up building the type of events we’d personally prefer to see and experience. In reality, neither of those approaches will keep your audience engaged with the experience in the moment — or satisfied with it after they exit. Instead, effective event design means understanding your audience and building your event around them. Designing events with empathy in mind allows you to find different ways to speak into your audience and showcase how much you notice their needs and desires.

How Personalized Touches Bring Human Connection 

Connecting with audiences goes far beyond marketing or event technology. No matter how dazzling your event is, attendees want to feel like it matters to you that they, specifically, showed up. Personalization goes a long way, especially as the event industry continues to learn how AI can serve clients well. 

To harness the power of personalization, you must make attendees feel at ease about sharing personal information. Break through hesitations by explaining what information you’ll be collecting and why, reassuring your audience that you won’t keep their answers after the event, and making the actual “intel gathering” process fun. Make a lighthearted quiz or questionnaire that’s both on brand and fun to fill out!

Personalization matters because when brands understand the behaviors behind their audience’s actions, they can empower event attendees to join or continue in their shared mission. We all can remember events where we felt seen and validated for who we are – and that inspired brand loyalty in us. According to recent research, experiences and personal touches are more effective marketing tools than any tech feature or keynote speaker alone. 

At Redstory, behavioral science is a key part of our event design process. We want to ensure we understand how the audience will act and respond to every element of their experience. When we grasp what they’ll sense and feel, we can design events that will help our clients meet KPIS and help attendees have an enjoyable experience from beginning to end. 

How to Design Events With Empathy in Mind

Maybe you already know that empathetic event design matters – but you’re not sure how to accomplish it! What does it look like to be intentional with the details? 

To design an event with empathy, step into your attendees’ shoes. At Redstory, our certification in event design helps us do just that. We use our tools to “walk alongside the attendee” from start to finish of the event, discovering how to provide unique and engaging touch points that audiences haven’t seen anywhere else. Mapping a customer’s journey matters in any marketing campaign, but it’s especially important when they’re purchasing a ticket for an experience they hope to get something from in return — whether that’s inspiration, education, or community. 

The Redstory process is multilayered, designed to foster human connection at every turn. When your audience connects with your event, you’ll meet your goals as a brand, too — a true win-win situation. When you partner with us for event design, here’s what you can expect: 

  • Research-backed ideas: We always begin by identifying KPIs and determining your audience so that we can help you meet your goals and serve your attendees well. 
  • Behavioral science: We use tried and true scientific findings to help everyone who attends your event have an impactful and positive experience. 
  • Strategic design: We’re experts in spatial design, because the actual event space should always inform your specific event decisions. From crowd flow to aesthetic elements and technology, we’ll work to create a seamless experience for your attendees. 
  • Unique experiences: We use personalization and experiential design to create an all-encompassing experience they’ll remember for years to come! We want every ticket holder to feel seen and understood. 

Want to power your next event with empathy that drives human connection? We’d love to help. Reach out to us today to see how we can bring your event experience to life and serve your audience well at every step.