By Sara Belle
One of the most satisfying feats that you can ever do as an organization freak is to successfully plan a small business event or a formal gathering of sorts. The key, as is true with most things, is that the details work together to successfully create a coherent whole. Does it matter what type of event? Not really. The best event planning tips can be applied to almost any type of event. Perhaps you’re holding a seminar with a well-known guest speaker or holding a celebration to announce that a Plumfund funding came through, giving your project the green light you’ve been waiting for. Whatever it is, the following will help you pull off an event smoothly.
Know Your Audience
Having a well-defined target audience is essential to pulling off the event. After all, you wouldn’t want a guest speaker whose topic goes above the crowd’s head. If you’re putting together an event that many specialists will attend, you don’t want someone speaking in broad terms, for example. A further benefit of pinning down your intended audience is that this makes all other decisions surrounding the event much easier.
The Devil Is in the Details
This means that the venue lighting must be adequate. Enough power for the electronics and PowerPoint presentations (if any), and parking accommodations must be available. Refreshments must be served.
For the latter, you can spruce it up a bit by having baskets of sweets and snacks at a table—even for a relatively short event. A company such as Sweet Services makes this all too easy with their pre-packaged assortments of the most popular treats. Pair these with beverages. Everything about the event you’ve organized will be tied to their recollection of your brand.
Don’t Let the Purpose Get Lost
The primary purpose of the event must be front-and-center. All the support services must converge to getting people in the seats and making conversions as a result of your presentation. All of this happens in the planning stages.
Conversion isn’t always the goal, of course; you may just be looking to get your name out there (brand awareness). In this case, bring out the fireworks to get people talking, taking snapshots and posting them on their social networks.
Don’t Let Your Debut Date Clash with Other Events
This is similar to what the big movie studios do when the summer blockbusters are coming out. You don’t want to try and go head-to-head with the Pepsi convention a mile from you, especially if the same people that would come to your event would rather go there. This is simply a matter of proper scheduling.
Similarly, avoid having your event around the time popular vacation holidays start, for obvious reasons. A weekend is always a good option; you should be able to corral a healthy crowd if everything else is done right.
Find Efficient Ways to Raise Money
Paying for the event is an inevitable order of business, of course. While brainstorming for ideas, take a look at crowdfunding platforms that can help you get it off the ground. There are ways to determine the number of people who will attend, so that you can decide beforehand whether or not you’ll be able to afford the event.
Once the numbers are in, you can compare them with the expense budget to cover food, beverages, and other potential cost overruns. You can also reduce some of the cost by partnering with other brands. You’ll put their names on the list of sponsors and provide them with visibility. Find the right sponsors, and they may cover the entire event, if you can bring in the adequate crowd.
Sara Belle is a super-connector with ManageBacklinks.io who helps businesses with building their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. Sara frequently writes about the latest advancements in the SaaS world and digital marketing.