Everyone has this quiet fear of planning the perfect party or corporate event and no one shows up. Well that happened to me a long time ago. I sent the invites, bought all the food and drink, reached out in advance, got all cleaned up and waited. So, what went wrong? At the time I didn’t know, but fortunately that was just a dinner party.
Today, whether it’s a small dinner party or large scale corporate events, it’s what we do best. Why? Because over the years our team has gathered over 5,000 hours of experience in knowing how to make an event shine, deliver and be memorable.
Here are few things to think about before you plan your next event.
Plan, Plan, Plan
One of the biggest challenges in event planning is knowing when to start and how early to get a jump on things. 6-12 months is generally a good window depending on the size and type of event you want to plan. Most people have no idea what they are doing next week let alone next year, so though you should be planning, don’t expect them to be ready to set a date quite yet. Seasons affect one’s availability and willingness to travel and attend an event. Also, don’t forget holidays as it can change availability and travel costs.
We all like to work with people who are like us. Creating a diverse team is essential to having the ability to create an event that will appeal to your client, or social group base. Think about filling your team with experts in each functional area and let them do their job. You’ll be surprised at what they bring to the table.
Brainstorm. Get creative!
To build the best event you need to think in and out of the box. Get a white board. Think about the best date, time of the year, location, theme, get great speakers, plan networking activities and don’t forget the food and lot s of it. Hungry attendees won’t come back next year!
Find great partners
Everyone needs partners to make sure that all details are covered. The 5,000 hours of experience our staff has brings enormous expertise to the planning, promotion and execution of events of all kinds. Partners can include planning partners, photographers, entertainment, caterers, etc. Just make sure they are committed, well reviewed and care as much about your event as you do. Remember everyone has blind spots.
Know your audience and listen to them
What did your last event look like? How was it received? Did you conduct a survey? What was the feedback? Read it all and take it in. Listen to what your employees are talking about now, what they want to hear as much as what they need to hear. Think about everything from content to pricing, networking to speakers and yes, there it is again, food!
We have so many great outlets for promotion that not knowing the date, time and details should never be a reason someone doesn’t attend. Promotion can come in the form of blogs, articles, press, social media and word of mouth. Create a marketing calendar and plan how you will use each of the promotional platforms available. Utilize marketing partners if you do not have the expertise in house.