Event planning is the organization of all the activities that surround an event. This could be a party, festival, conference or trade show. Planning an event takes lots of work and critical organizational skills. Event planners will often work on everything from catering, entertainment, booking presenters and managing exhibitors. The event planning process ensures that all of these are covered, that the event remains within budget and is delivered on time and fulfills the event objectives.
Key Components of Event Planning
- Event Preparation
Event preparation refers to writing a plan, having a budget, choosing a venue, choosing suppliers like caterers or staff members and securing sponsorship.
- Event Promotion
Event promotion refers to email, social media, advertising, SEO, public relations and discounts.
- On-site Event Management
On-site event management refers to a smooth entry management and making sure the big day (or days) goes off without a hitch and that everyone is where they need to be while putting out any “onsite fires.”
- Post Event Review
Post-event review refers to organizing debriefs, data collection and analysis while reviewing it against the original event aims and figures.
There are many more individual tasks that fall under each event planning bracket, so having a plan to cover them all is a great idea.
It is crucial to have a plan to have a successful event. This is usually completed before the event as it allows you to think about the event from start to finish. This is especially useful if you have different teams like sales or marketing or if you need to present the event plan to other investors.
Here are a few areas to consider when writing an event plan:
Finding a name for the event sounds simple enough, right? Well, not quite. Before naming an event, think through the following questions: Is your event name unique? Memorable? Clear and descriptive, so it’s easy for people to know what your event is about?
Again, this might sound simple but have you checked to ensure there are no big direct or indirect competitive events on or close to your event date? Have you assured that there are no bank holidays, religious holidays or other large events? Are you sure the venue is available and at least on hold for those dates?
Before you decide, consider whether you have picked the best location based on where your attendees are from? This could be your specific venue or if you haven’t booked it yet, the intended city or destination for your event. Are there good transport links to the venue? Does it fit with your budget, brand, preferred dates and anything else materially crucial to to your attendees’ experience?
People run events for lots of reasons. What is the purpose of yours? Some options include profit, fundraising, brand awareness, lead generation, networking, education, community engagement, product launch and many more. Be sure you know what the core purpose and essential outcome of your event are.
Start by identifying the core need of your attendees. Why are they going to pick your event over everything else they could spend their time or money on? What do you give them that no one else can?
Your audience comes first of all but as you start thinking about promotion, this is a great place to document precisely who you think should be at your event. For example, a conference might attract mid to senior management. A festival might attract millennials or a charity that might attract anyone touched by the same issue as the members, for instance, cancer victims.
Event Marketing Timeline
The best event marketing strategies follow a timeline and logical sequence with each promotion reinforcing the last.
Start by breaking down your efforts by milestone: pre-event, ticketing launch, day-to-day and last call.
Event Costing Overview
This is the place to detail your costs or expected budget so everyone is on the same page about what they can and can’t spend and where they will need to make savings.
Event Safety Plan
When it comes to keeping your event attendees, staff members and presenters safe, there are many elements to consider. The government’s health and safety for events guidelines can help ensure you think about the different aspects: reducing risk, first aid, toilets and washing facilities, parking, waste removal and food and health safety.
There are lots of factors involved when it comes to event planning. A good plan is key to the success of any event.
Let us know in the comment section below your tips for a successful event.