I was a motivational speaker for a construction, utility company where 65% of the audience were spouses. That's right, more spouses attended then delegates! Why? The event had become known as a great opportunity for spouses to connect with each other and better understand the industry.
I asked the meeting planner how they managed to get so many spouses to attend. Firstly, a large part of the construction industry is family owned. Thus, families( including spouses) are part of the company and the industry
More importantly, over the years the meeting planner has designed some great activities for spouses at events. The spousal program is critical at a conference. It is an opportunity for people to network, share stories and understand their spouses unique profession.
A conference is an opportunity to introduce to spouses the key people (and issues) that individuals interact with daily. This can help spouses understand, relate to and ease overall pressure with family dynamics throughout the year.
Conference attendance can be easily boosted if meeting planners continually plan, promote and invite spouses to events.
Continually organizing activities for spouses and families to participate in helps include them and encourage them to attend.
Attending a conference is a costly endeavour and can cut into family vacation time. Why not marry vacation time and education to the same event?
Simply adding some great programs for spouses to your conference agenda can continually make them a regular part of your event.
I was an opening motivational speaker for the construction company and they asked me to make the speech motivational and relevant( or general) enough for spouses to attend. The general session and keynote speakers can easily encorporate anecdotes and analogies relevant for spouses.
Including some fun resort activities, evening events and even workshops for spouses will boost overall conference revenue and industry engagement.