You may have seen the news over the weekend about Milton Keynes’ “Winter Wonderland”, which was closed down just one day after it opened for being below the standard you’d expect for a festive-themed event, with complaints about a Santa in a cheap suit, an ice rink without ice and reindeers without antlers.
It isn’t the first time that an event aimed at families and Christmas-lovers has sunk below the bar and generated a storm of complaints and bad publicity, so you have to wonder why organisers open events which are bound to meet upset and complaints.
The best way to make an event memorable is to go the extra mile in the small details. People will remember those details that make them smile, whether it be bales of hay at a barn dance, or flower garlands given to guests at a Hawaiian summer party. Some details on their own may seem cheesy, but when they are part of an event which has been well thought out with the theme running throughout the event, these touches will go a long way to generating positive word of mouth publicity for your event.
The outcome of Winter Wonderland’s failure as an event on the company itself is largely financial – a loss of earnings during this Christmas period, the missed opportunity of repeat bookings by the Milton Keynes Council for future years, and the unlikeliness of being hired for an event in the near future without some serious improvement to their operations.
If you are planning a festive event this Christmas, whether it is for a public audience or even just your company party, put some thought into the details, go the extra mile, and make sure people are talking about it for the whole festive period.