No matter the event, increasing engagement is always tough during a large presentation. There are tons of variables and large hurdles, but using these 5 simple tricks will help you grow your attendee participation today!

1. Give your attendees the slide decks. Let’s face it- if your presenters don’t blow the minds of your attendees, they will either blitz through their presentation or bore them to death. In either instance, give your attendees the PowerPoint files so that they can better follow along, make notes and review the material after the presentation. Having said that, make sure not to make it a hassle for them to get. Don’t make them wait in line to use the single thumb drive at the registration desk and don’t print it out either! Use the attachment tool in 2Shoes to attach files to each session, making accessing them a streamlined process.

2. Use an event app. There are plenty of event apps out there and some are absolutely better than others. This awesome Guidebook blog post compares many of the tops event apps based on functionality and cost. The reality is that you need an app for your event. We are in the app era and attendees are not going to be happy with only print media, no online agenda or lack of an interactive event map. Listen to your attendees on this one and fork over the cash for at least a simple app.

3. Give them a voice. One of the main reasons attendees have come to your event is to engage with big-name speakers. This is very hard to do when you have to jostle in line for a chance at the microphone or write your questions on pieces of paper and hope that yours gets randomly chosen. Give your attendees a question asking tool (with a voting function like 2Shoes) that will make it easier for them to interact with the presenter. You will also feel great about this because you will be able to manage ‘mic hogs’ and engage shy attendees.

4. Include wifi in the registration fee. This point is pretty simple and needs little explanation. Having to pay for WiFi is VERY annoying after each of your attendees just handed over big bucks for the registration. This nickel and dime will give you, and your event, a bad name. Pay the event space for the top tier of WiFi and include this cost within your registration fee.

5. Empower Shy Attendees. There is no doubt that you will have shy attendees at your event. We met an attendee that had been to an event 5 years in a row and never asked a single question, until using 2Shoes, that is. These shy attendees have taken a brave step to be with a bunch of strangers so make it easy on them to meet new people. Use a questions asking tool with a social function and, during the networking event, have forced engagement (ice breaker games) so they don’t have to walk up to strangers on their own.

We are always happy to give advice on making events better.