Organising an event can be intimidating for business owners. There are so many things to think about and so many challenges to face along the way. But don’t let that scare you off. With these 8 tips, you will easily plan and execute your next event.
1. Set Aside Enough Time for Planning
The time you need to plan an event will depend on the experience of the planner and the type and size of the event. Major events sometimes take up to a year to plan, as they demand a lot of preparations, bookings, and other details. Smaller corporate events, on the other hand, can be successfully planned in 4 to 6 months.
2. Draft a Budget
Organising an event can cost a lot of money. In order to keep your expenses in order, you must create a well-thought-through budget that will cover all the expenses (e.g. the food, the entertainment, the promotional costs…).
There are many templates you can download and use to ensure you have all your expenses covered. Don’t forget to leave some money aside, for unforeseeable situations – such as changes in the venue or last-minute entertainment cancellation.
3. Always Check Out the Venue in Person
Many people rely on images or videos to get a sense of how a certain venue looks like. But even with all the technology at hand, you won’t know what the venue is really like unless you check it out in person.
Even if the space looks perfect in the images, you can quickly discover that air conditioning doesn’t work properly or that you can’t get the equipment through the front door.
Allocating responsibilities to different team members is important at every stage of the event planning process, but it’s even more important during the actual event. Make sure to assign at least one person to help guests with the registration, another one for greeting the speakers and one more for ensuring that the catering and the equipment arrive on time.
You can also delegate other tasks such as promotional activities, communication with the press, or guests invites. After all, the only way you can ensure that everything is running smoothly is by establishing a clear set of tasks and assignments for every team member.
5. Promote Your Event
The best way to promote your event will in many ways depend on the size of your budget and time you have at your disposal. Today, most people use multiple channels to promote their event and reach a bigger crowd. Emails seem to be the marketers' favourite promotional channel. In a recent study, 78% of marketers said that email marketing is their most effective marketing tool.
Social networks are also a popular promotional channel that allows you to reach thousands of people without spending a dime. If you have a bigger promotional budget, you can use paid online ads or post ads in offline media (TV, radio, advertising). Just remember to choose the media partners that talk to your target audience.
6. Hire an Event Planner
If you have some extra money in your budget and not enough time, you can always choose to hire an event planner. Event planners will use their experience to ensure that your event goes according to plan.
If you have never organised an event before, or if the event you are planning includes many speakers and guests, it’s particularly advisable to hire a professional event planner, since the organisational activities can become overwhelming over time.
7. Do One Final Check 24 hours Before the Event
24 hours before the event is a great time to do a comprehensive final check-up. Make sure to check whether you have invited all the participants and guests, whether you have prepared the printed materials, and whether everybody knows their responsibilities.
To ensure that everything is going according to plan, it is best to create a checklist and then simply cross out the items one by one.
8. Ask for Feedback
Feedback from the attendees will help you objectively assess your event. That’s why you should make sure to ask the attendees to fill out an evaluation form at the end of every event. It can be a paper form distributed on the actual event or an online form that the attendees will fill out once they get home.
Ask them about every aspect of the event: the location, venue, logistics, speakers, staff... The feedback you receive will help you identify mistakes and correct the shortcomings when you plan your future events.
These were some of our favourite event planning tips every business owner should stick to in order to ensure the success of their event. Make sure to try them out and catapult your future events to a whole new level.