Meet Philadelphia’s new ‘night mayor’ Raheem Manning
You’ve heard the phrase, “own the airways,” when it comes to launching your brand, product, or services. But have you considered owning the night? There’s a movement in some of the largest cities in the world of what is called a Night Mayor. Their responsibility is simple, create an engaging and entertaining environment that lasts after dark.
In Philadelphia, for example, the Philadelphia department of commerce has appointed Raheem Manning as the city’s first nighttime economy director. He says his responsibility is everything that begins after 5. The City of New Orleans appointed Howard Kaplan, a local bar owner, who distinguished the purpose of the nighttime economy director as not focused on code enforcement but rather on programming and entertainment.
We certainly know that not all events happen at night. But how does the concept of a Night Mayor for your event after 5 impact your planning and consideration? Further, events after 5 PM create a very unique and special way to kick up the sentiment and overall experience with your patrons and attendees. And with your major events happening in the very cities with nighttime economy directors, what should you be considering?
Here are a few of our ideas.
- Connect with your Nighttime Mayor. Consider a quick google search to see if a nighttime economy director exists in the location where you will be hosting your event. Is there something you can plug into? Is there something you can bring to the city? Could there be an opportunity to merge budgetary powers to create something unique?
- Find out what exists after dark. Cutting your patrons loose to explore the city is almost always what most guests will do after your event is over. But imagine what you might be leaving on the table as an un-capitalized event coordination opportunity for your attendees. Further, many attendees would welcome your suggestions, invitations, or even coordinated events after dark in those destinations.
- Bring the Night to your Day. Let’s face it, all-day meetings can be horrendously dull. Maybe your meeting needs a dose of an entertainment refresher mid-day like a musical guest you might only experience on the streets. It is different and will bring the house down to a point you might need to re-energize your attendees.
- Tap into social apps. How can you better incorporate social feeds and the nighttime economy into your event? Consider tagging venues, locations, and other elements into your social feeds to let the local economy know you are there. They may bring the nighttime economy opportunities directly to you.
- Tech-ify your venue to reflect the night feel. When the lights go down for the keynote, is that a perfect opportunity to expand a city lights scene in your content or throughout the venue? New York’s skyline by night is much more dramatic than by day. You can use lighting, projection, and great content to make that happen.
The opportunities are endless to bring the nighttime economy to your day’s event. As event planners, you need to own the airways and the timetables. Don’t forget that you are the ambassador of both. You create the vibe and event access to the venues you are selecting. With some advance planning, you will give your guests unexpected, extraordinary moments that will be unforgettable.
Want to learn more about Philadelphia and Raheem Manning? https://www.phila.gov/2022-07-21-department-of-commerce-announces-raheem-manning-as-citys-first-night-time-economy-director/
Check out what Atlanta is doing with their Night Mayor. https://nextcity.org/urbanist-news/atlantas-night-mayor-will-govern-more-than-parties