Planning The Perfect Incentive Travel Event: Learnings from APSC 2018

Himani Sheth
October 2, 2018
“An incentive event, also sometimes known as an incentive program or incentive trip, is a planned event or trip that is used to encourage people to achieve a specific business goal.”

By definition, an incentive travel event is meant for businesspeople to motivate their employees and help them reach a specific goal. Corporate event planners who execute such events require a definite skill set and a unique checklist to plan such an event. Different from a corporate event such as a conference or a seminar, an incentive travel event is a trip, conference and at times an award ceremony all rolled into one.

As an event-tech company, we have had the chance to power a lot of events ranging from corporate events, large-scale government events to the event type in discussion; incentive travel events.

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If I were to share an ideal incentive travel event that we’ve attended that provided useful learning that can be shared with event professionals, it would be the Ancient Paints Sales Conference 2018.

We have been partnering up with the event for two years now, organizing multiple incentive events with the organizers over the years. APSC 2018 was an incentive event held for Asian Paints’ employees.

Simplifying Asian paints Incentive Events

Giving an insight into the company organizing the event, Asian Paints is a major corporate company that is divided into zones across India.

It organizes multiple events within the year to motivate and reward its employees for exceptional performance. The company is divided into multiple zones within India. 18 zones had participated in the Asian Paints Sales Conference 2018 which was then divided into two groups.

The event was a four-day event held from 2nd- 5th of July, divided between two groups, the event being conducted on 2nd & 3rd for group one and 4th-5th July for group 2.

The event was a thoroughly planned incentive event with a lot of activities including contests, speeches, entertainment, motivational sessions, etc.

incentive travel event planning apsc 2018

The Incentive Travel Event App: Engagement, Fun, Work & More

As mentioned before, this was an incentive event held with the intention of recognizing and rewarding employee performance.

In order to facilitate its detailed four-day agenda, the organizers of the event opted for an incentive travel event app that could help them make it more convenient to engage and manage their attendees.

The organizers had a lot of mini events and games planned to engage their employees prior to and through the course of the event.

Two apps within one app with a lot of great event app features:

incentive travel event planning apsc 2018

1. Contests

This was perhaps one of the most engaging features of the event app. The organizers of the event, as mentioned before had held a lot of activities, online and offline in order to engage and motivate their employees. As a part of these activities, the organizers had arranged multiple online contests including a photo contest, selfie contest, video contests quiz, etc.

These contests were held exclusively on their event app and were amalgamated under one single ‘contests’ feature. Apart from this, another separate section was created on the event app named ‘rules of the contest’ which opened a PDF document whereby the organisers had listed a set of definite rules to be followed by the attendees for each contest throughout the event.

2. Attendees

Asian Paints employees from multiple zones all over the country had come up for the event. It was a great opportunity for the employees to network with their colleagues and discusses work, future opportunities, etc. Therefore, each attendee had their own profile on the event app.

All these attendee profiles were listed under the ‘attendees’ section of the app. Each employee can discover other attendee’s profile and network with them through the app. It was a great way to connect all the employees who had gathered for the event and help them interact with each other.

3. Event Feed

With all these activities that had been going on across the venue including games, informal events, speeches, sessions, etc. it was absolutely essential to keep all the attendees updated on these happenings. The best way to do that was to integrate an event newsfeed within the event app itself. Attendees could post their experience and live updates on the event feed.

Apart from this, the event feed was also used as a gamification tool. Attendees were to post pictures, selfies, videos, etc. on the event feed itself as part of the contests that I had mentioned earlier. Other attendees could engage with their posts directly on the event app.

4. Notifications

Apart from a live event newsfeed on the app, another way to keep attendees updated on all the events, changed and more apart from engaging them is through push notifications. Organizers could send out mass notifications that attendees could view on their event app.

Apart from this, as mentioned before, event app users were able to connect with their fellow attendees as well as engage with their posts on the event feed in terms of liking or commenting on the posts. Whenever an attendee engaged with their profile or posts, attendees would receive live notification on the event app itself apart from email notifications.

5. Venue Layout

The incentive event was held on a huge venue with a lot of different activities being held at different points on the venue. In order to maximize attendee convenience and help them navigate through the venue during the event, organizers had integrated a detailed venue layout on their incentive event app itself.

Attendees could get an overview of the entire event venue and map out different checkpoints where the event or activity they were interested in was happening and navigate to the point through the venue map.

6. Leaderboard

With all these activities and contests happening during the event, organizers kept track of the members who won and the zones they belonged to.

From this, the results were compiled in the form of a leaderboard where the zones were listed in order of the points they scored through each competition. The leaderboard was updated constantly throughout the event and the final zone who won was given a trophy.

7. Gallery

With incentive events like this one, organizers do give priority to documenting the entire event. A lot of pictures were taken during the event. Apart from this, this being an annual event, organizers also had documentation of last year’s event into the form of event photos.

All of these were compiled into a media gallery that the attendees could access from the event app. It is a great way to engage attendees in through their event experience in the form of photos and help them experience the entire event again.

The event app turned out to be a great tool overall mainly due to the clear insights that the organizers had in terms of what they wanted to achieve with the app and how.

Our Takeaways

incentive travel event planning apsc 2018

This was perhaps one of the most engaging events that our team had powered and been a part of. Events like these are a great way to break the monotony for employees. Rewarding employees and recognizing their achievements in such a fashion are a great way to help break away from the daily corporate life and help they relax to motivate employees and maximize productivity in the future.

And as always, we did pick up on a few things related to organizing incentive events like these from APSC 2018. Here are a few of our takeaways from the event:

1. Develop your app keeping in mind your attendees’ convenience

The incentive event app was a great tool leveraged by the organizers to maximize their attendees’ convenience in multiple ways. Even in their previous events, organizers have integrated features such as travel and weather details to help their attendees.

In this event app, features such as venue layout, event info, etc. were great ways to help attendees navigate through the event and event venue quite easily. This also helps organizers maximize event app adoption rate for other kinds of events. The organizers of APSC 2018 did keep all of this in mind and developed a personalized app that made the event experience convenient for their attendees.

2. Event app can turn out to be a great tool for audience engagement

I have emphasized time and again how engaging an event app can be. We did see the utility of the event app as an audience engagement tool live in action during this event. Integrating engagement features including gamification features such as quiz, live notifications, newsfeed, gallery, etc. helped organizers involve their attendees in everything that was happening at the event apart from making the app quite indispensable.

Attendees were also able to network with their colleagues through the app and get to know their team better. The event was a great example as to when planned out right, a mobile app with all the right event app features can help engage your attendees with the event and have them talking about it long after it’s over.

3. Contests and giveaways are a great strategy to engage attendees

Gamification is a great way to break the ice. It has a lot of benefits in terms of attendee engagement and eventually maximizing event ROI. The organizers had arranged for a lot of great activities to motivate their employees. For e.g. the event was consistent with the Football World Cup 2018.

The organizers creatively planned a campaign named ‘The World Cup’ whereby the zone that achieved maximum target was awarded a custom trophy. Apart from this, the competitions held throughout was a great way to boost team spirit and motivate employees to work together to achieve the goal, thus fulfilling a huge part of their event agenda.

4. Incentive event planners must always look for that balance

A personal opinion from our team at the event, the organizers of this event did a wonderful job in planning a perfectly balanced incentive travel event. The agenda of such events is to usually motivate and engage their employees in a fun manner in order to recognize their achievements and help them be more productive in the coming future by giving their best.

However, at the end of it all, it is indeed a work event. The organizers of APSC 2018 did an excellent job in finding a balance between fun, glamour and work. There were games, informal events, entertainment as well as speeches, motivational speakers and sessions. It was overall quite a well-planned event.

Thus these incentive corporate events are really interesting and engaging ways to build team spirit and motivate corporate employees to achieve more. This event wad one is done right. Hope our takeaways add to your incentive event planning.

Do share your experience in terms of planning or attending such incentive events. You can connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

To know more about how Hubilo can help you with your event tech requirements, click here.

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Himani Sheth

Hemani Sheth is a Mass Communication major and an event enthusiast. She is currently associated with Hubilo, a cloud based event management platform that aims to help event professionals create exceptional events. Hemani strives to create resourceful guides that pave way for insightful discussion built around various facets of the event industry. She has a keen interest in event technology and how multiple innovations in the field can help transform the way events are created, marketed and executed. Hemani is also a content marketer and a key contributor to Hubilo Blog. An avid reader, traveler and a movie buff, she is open to conversations on any topic under the sun! Go ahead, say hello to her on twitter @HimaniSheth

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