This won’t be news to you. That’s why you have such a long checklist to run through – from the way finder signage to the welcome drinks, branded menus and speaker slides.
And the thing you’ve probably spent the longest time sourcing – the goody bag – is surprising, relevant and on-budget.
But you’d be surprised how many times all of this effort gets blown the moment an attendee takes off their coat.
First impressions count – and last
The one thing that’s rarely prioritised high enough on the list – if it’s there at all – is the Cloakroom.
Failure to consider how you’re going to deal with your guests’ prized belongings can create the wrong impression at the start – or ruin all those positive feelings you’ve worked SO hard to engender right at the end.
A few tips for a good Cloakroom experience
- Create an allocated space for the Cloakroom
Might seem a bit obvious this one, but you need to create an allocated space away from the welcome desk. You don’t want a queue to build whilst you’re registering guests and dealing with their coats. Keep a steady flow-through and you won’t have disgruntled attendees before they’ve even got into the event.
- Get the logistics right
Make sure the Cloakroom is big enough to cope with the number of guests. How many coat rails and hangers will you need? How many coats can you realistically get onto one rail? Where will you place bags? Where will you keep umbrellas in case it’s a rainy day (which let’s face it, it normally is?)
- Make sure you have enough staff – and that they’re the right ones
Everyone hates having to queue for the Cloakroom, particularly at the end of an event when you just want to get home. Don’t let their positive impressions turn to negative ones because you only have one person checking tickets and gathering possessions – especially if that person isn’t known for their customer service skills. You don’t want them leaving what was otherwise successful event with a bitter taste in their mouth.
- Don’t reach for the book of raffle tickets
The last thing an attendee wants to be handed in return for their expensive Armani Shawl is a tatty raffle ticket that’s looks like it’s straight out of the school tombola. Apart from the disastrous impression it gives in branding terms, they’re easily ripped and lost.
You can pick up ‘off-the-shelf’ paper cloakroom tags or plastic cloakroom tags cheaply. And if you go for the plastic versions, they can be reused time and time again.
Branded Cloakroom Tags are even better. You can have them printed with the event’s branding for consistency – and what client won’t love that?
Or have them printed with your own Event Company’s branding. As well as being able to reuse them for future events, they’re also a great marketing tool to help turn those attendees into future clients. You could also add a disclaimer on the back, clearly spelling out your liability policy (that’s another box ticked).
- Bring the Cloakroom into the theme and branding of your event
If you’ve spent a lot of time and money on theming all the other areas of the event, make sure you do the same here. Think about the signage, the product placement – even how your Cloakroom staff are dressed. Don’t make it seem like it’s an after-thought.
If you’re spending thousands on an event, don’t let the Cloakroom be the one area that’s forgotten in the budget. Make those first – and last impressions – count.