Corporate conferences are a big deal. They give organizations an opportunity to bring people together and learn about new products, offerings and/or corporate vision. Often, conferences act as a vehicle for outbound marketing – whether to recruit new employees or gain new customers. But in order for this to work, you must entice people to come. How do you create an engaging conference that doesn’t feel like one big meeting? Through carefully-planned conference entertainment.

Looking for ideas on how to strategically use conference entertainment to keep your attendees engaged? Here are some tried-and-true methods that fit into every budget:

Kick it off with entertainers

Bring in an Emcee, DJ or band to get everyone motivated from the start. This is a great way to connect with your corporate culture and lead into opening remarks from your keynote speaker.

Break up the day with a live act

A female singer from the band Social Sound performs at a weddingChances are, your attendees are bouncing between conference rooms, learning about your products and/or services. They might be meeting with leadership or sitting on panel discussions. By lunchtime, they are probably mentally spent.

This is a good time to bring in a live act.  Something upbeat and fun that breathes some fresh air into the day. Consider hiring a comedian, a band or a dance group that will pump up the energy levels and get people motivated.

Add interactive entertainers to your tradeshow

Conventions often include tradeshows where vendors, partners and business departments can set up booths. Make your tradeshow stand out with interactive entertainers that fit with your overall theme.

This is also a good way to engage your audience in social marketing. We’ve seen some companies get creative by designing scavenger hunts through their tradeshows – their attendees have to find specific items and post them on social media with a designated hashtag in order to win. If you want to drive traffic to certain booths, plan to have your entertainers constantly moving between these booths so that your attendees have to seek them out. This keeps traffic moving the way you want it to.

Spice up your gala or after party

An LED robot makes a big impression, entertaining at a corporate eventGalas and afterparties provide another great way to infuse your company culture into your conference. Whether you host a formal evening or a street party, you can bring in breathtaking acts to amaze your attendees.

Consider hiring professional dancers, aerialists or fire dancers to perform throughout the night.

Get started with your conference entertainment

If you need help finding professional, awe-inspiring entertainers that fit your corporate culture, Al-Vento is here to assist. We’ve carefully selected professional, reliable entertainers, musicians and bands that know how to keep audiences engaged.  Ready to get started? Let’s chat about your next conference.

When we start event planning, we all have the same goal. We want to throw an awesome party. One that has everyone laughing, talking, dancing and making memories that last a lifetime. No pressure, right? We’ve got some event entertainment tips so that you can hire the right entertainers for your party.

Identify the experience you want to create

Band performing for live audienceClose your eyes and imagine it. When you picture the height of your party, what does it feel like? Is it a formal, elegant affair? Is it a jam-packed dance floor? Is it a cool, sophisticated cocktail party?

Perhaps you plan to have an interactive experience for your guests. Or you want something subtle and subdued that allows people to mingle and network.


Ask around and read reviews

Now that you’ve narrowed down your search, it’s time to do a little more research on your potential performers. Now is the time to start reading up on reviews. The Knot, Wedding Wire and Facebook are all great places to see what people are saying.

We also recommend asking your venue, event planner and friends who they recommend. In some cases, your venue may only allow previously approved entertainers who pass their standards for professionalism and quality.

Ask the right questions

Once you’ve established the experience you are trying to create, it’s time to reach out to the entertainers Event entertainment tips - interview your band. Two people interviewing over coffee.that will shape that vibe. But how do you make sure you are working with the right person? We recommend interviewing your entertainers (or booking company) to make sure they are the right fit for your party. Here are some questions we recommend:

  • How long has the band/group been established?
  • How many members of the band/group are there?
  • Is there a lot of turnover within the band/group?
  • When was the last time a band member left the group?
  • How frequently does the band/group perform for events similar to yours?
  • Is the band/group/production company familiar with your venue?
  • Are there any technical requirements that the band/group has, in order to perform?
  • Will there be anyone on-site to help if there are technical issues with the sound and/or performance?

Book your event entertainer

You followed our event entertainment tips and found the perfect entertainer (or entertainers). Now it’s time to get down to business. In most cases you will have to put down a deposit and sign a contract to lock your performers in. If you’re working through an event or wedding planner, they will help you with this process.

Once you receive the entertainer’s contract, you typically have to sign and submit your deposit by a certain day. If you aren’t able to send back this information right away, so make sure to mark your calendar so you don’t lose your entertainer.

Did these event entertainment tips help you? Do you have any of your own? Leave them in the comments!

Oh corporate holiday parties. If you work in an office environment, you know that a holiday party is both expected and dreaded. Holiday parties are the ultimate team building exercise, but when you invite your employees to celebrate with you after working hours, you need to make it fun to avoid grumbling around the water cooler.

But with proper planning, corporate holiday parties create fun, lasting memories.  Here are three tips to help make your event awesome.

Review past parties

HR person reviewing past corporate holiday party successesChances are, your company has thrown a few parties in the past. Take some time to talk to employees and managers about what they liked and didn’t like about these parties. This gives you a good basis of what was successful – whether it was the venue, food, music or entertainment.

Once you have a list of things that captured your employees attention, then you can plan to create a similar experience. You can start with booking a similar venue, entertainers, bands and/or caterers.

Consider your audience

An LED robot makes a big impression, entertaining at a corporate eventWho’s coming to this party? Obviously your employees. While everyone is different, what common factors do they have in common? For example, if most of your employees have families and small children, a party during working hours may be easier because they don’t have to hire sitters.

If you have a very youthful corporate culture, a high-energy band or DJ may bring the party to life better than stringed instruments and a sit-down dinner. You may also want to consider entertainers beyond musicians to wow your guests.

Book your venue and musicians early for your holiday party

The holidays are busy, which means entertainers are in high demand. Popular musicians and entertainers will get fully booked throughout the holiday season so we recommend booking your holiday party entertainers no later than the beginning of November.

We know that the concept of corporate holiday parties is enough to cause eye rolls and the question, “why bother? Most people don’t want to come.” And it’s true that it’s tough to make plans around the holidays. While most companies still plan holiday parties, there’s a growing trend of organizations who don’t.

But when you take a step back, corporate holiday parties are absolutely worth the investment. With a well-planned event that’s catered to your employees, you help build a strong rapport across teams and managerial levels. This not only helps with retention, but also with recruitment.

Here are some reasons why you should still plan a corporate holiday party:

Corporate holiday parties give employees face-time with upper-level management

Throughout the year, your employees dedicate at least 40 hours (plus whatever commute they may business meetinghave) to building, maintaining and running your business. This gives them valuable insight on your customers’ experience, your processes and your organizational structure.

What these employees may not have is regular access to upper-level management. Now, put this in context of your holiday party. If your upper-level management and your employees have the opportunity to mingle, there are a couple great benefits to this.  Your employees leave feeling valued and important by management and management gleanS valuable information that can help shape business strategies for the next quarter.

Corporate holiday parties build and reinforce culture

Group of people dancing to DJ FusionThere’s no denying that corporate culture is even more important now than it ever has been. Holiday parties are a great way of reinforcing that culture.

How do you reinforce culture with a holiday party? It’s all in the entertainment! After all, music is the soul of any good party.

Tony Robbins puts it best. “A great holiday party should contain atmosphere, decor and refreshments (food, beverage) — without trying to cut corners. No matter how large or how small your holiday party is, if it contains those three characteristics — and is done in the spirit of giving — it is bound to be a great night that your employees will appreciate.”

When you book your entertainers and/or musicians, you should carefully consider how they reflect your corporate culture so that there’s a fun, upbeat vibe throughout your event.

Corporate holiday parties are good for moral

Now thats a party - people dancing with confetti during an Al Vento event geared towards Corporate holiday parties and weddingsThink about it… nothing helps people blow off steam like a good party. When you take the time to invest in a good holiday party, your employees will notice. They’ll post pictures of themselves having a great time on their social media and they’ll tell their friends and families how their company knows how to party. People like to have a good time and they like feeling appreciated. A good holiday party accomplishes both of these feelings. And  happy employees makes productive employees.

Ready to plan your corporate holiday party? If you are just getting started and need some entertainment ideas, we’re here to help. We have many entertainment options, from live bands to interactive performers.