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There’s so much to plan and coordinate when it comes to putting on an event for your company or organization. Where will you have it? How will attendees get there (and where will they stay)? What will they eat? Who will speak and on what topic? So many decisions to make.
While these are all essential to the success of your event, there is one area that is often overlooked yet has the ability to make or break the experience… music.
If you just shook your head and thought, “I’ll just leave that up to the venue or audio video company to handle,” you could be making a big mistake! Creating a playlist for your event puts you in control of the tone, the flow, and to some degree, the attendee experience. So, how do you make the most out of music and turn up the experience for your audience?
1. Uncover the goal for your event. Why are you hosting an event at all? Is it to celebrate something? Educate your attendees? Strengthen the team and the culture? Knowing why you are bringing these people together will help identify the types of songs you play.
2. Identify who will be there. Once you’ve decided on a goal, you’ll know who needs to be sitting in that audience. If you’ll have people of a similar age sitting in front of you, you could use music that appeals to their generation. However, if your attendees span several generations, you’ll need a variety of music to get everyone excited. Likewise, if you have a variety of cultures and countries of origin attending, you’ll want to incorporate music from their homes so everyone feels welcome.
3. Decide on a theme. Knowing your goal and your audience will allow you to choose a theme. This could be as specific as “Roaring 20’s” or as vague as “Igniting Excellence.” Your theme can help you tailor songs for the playlist. Hey, how about a rock star theme?
4. Identify the different “chunks” that will make up the event. Will there be an opening networking time? A kickoff keynote? Speakers? Breakouts? Sponsored meals? Every chunk of the event will need a different kind of music to achieve the emotional goal of that period.
5. Create a playlist that takes into account the mood you want to create and convey throughout the event as a whole. This playlist should take attendees on a journey, exciting them, inspiring them, and reinforcing your culture. If you’ve got a company song or a mission song, incorporate this as well.

A few other points to mention:
• Be mindful of the volume. You are not hosting a rock concert (though your event will be filled with rock stars), and if you want people to meet and connect, they have to be able to hear each other.
• Stay away from controversy. Unless your company culture is built on stirring up dissension, avoid inappropriate language and any musical artists who are in the news making trouble.
• Obtain the appropriate permissions for copyrighted music to avoid any legal issues.
• If your budget allows, consider live music for a hosted dinner or after-party.
• Oh, and if you want to take an awards ceremony to the next level, add some custom branded drumsticks and some up-tempo music. Just Like Marvelless Mark does in his Rhythms In Business presentation.
Creating a playlist can be a fun and exciting part of event planning. It can also serve as a parting gift. At the end of your event, send attendees a file with the songs so they have a wonderful memory to look back on.
Turn up the excitement on your next event with the perfect playlist! For more tips on creating a rockstar business and how to incorporate music and drumsticks into your next conference.

About Mark

Mark began inspiring audiences with his acclaimed book Opportunity Rocks®. After the book was featured in USA Today, Small Business Trendsetters, Business Innovators and TBN, it didn’t take long for Mark Kamp® to have his own following of screaming fans.

Now the exuberant keynote experience it is today, Mark Kamp’s® mission is to unlock everyone’s inner rock star, wherever that may take him.

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