From planning private launch parties to trade events, for those in the creative events industry, business-to-business events are their ‘bread and butter’. Anyone looking for a foot in the door or in search for a job in a related industry, event management can look deceptively simple.
But there is more to event management than sending out invites and booking caterers. Getting the best venue for the right event takes work.
Here are eight proven event management tips that take some of the mystery of planning and hosting successful events.
1 A detailed brief
What is it that your event is out to achieve? Is it launching a new product or welcoming a new acquisition to your portfolio?
The purpose of the event effectively helps determine what kind of event venue you need. For some, it will be all about the glitz and glamour but for other events, there may need to be a more formal feel than a ballroom
Create a detailed brief of what you want or, if it is easier, what you don’t want.
2 Different is sometimes good
Thinking outside the box is all well and good but if the uniqueness of your event is more about you flexing your creative muscles than the event or business itself, the message is dead and buried. For many companies, this means getting the right people with the right ideas, which is why they turn to a creative events recruitment agency.
Different is good but only if it is attainable. If you think it may fail, step back and use it another day.
3 One point of contact
Communication is key. Clear communication, both talking and listening, whether that is in person, via email or some other mode of communication, is simply critical to the success of an event.
And yet, it is the one factor that remains variable when it shouldn’t. communicating clearly is about using various channels but with the one same expectation: when something changes, tell people.
It is also the canvas against which all your people operate and, so they need to be clear about who is doing what and when. And what they do, see or say when something isn’t quite as it should be.
Here is an adage, too many cooks spoil the broth and the same is true of communication. There should be one point of communication, that is one person who coordinates it all.
One point of contact needs to be someone there ‘on the day’ whose sole purpose is to act as a lynchpin for the whole event. They must be solely dedicated to this and not to be expected to do everything and anything.
4 The venue is your friend
All too often, people new to the creative events industry will treat the venue as a supplier, a place that is nothing more than the space at which they are holding their party or event.
There needs to be a little more of connection between you and the venue than this. Because a great relationship with the venue means that when you need ‘the extra mile’, they are prepared and willing to pull it out the bag.
Collaborative working relationships are essential across many industries but especially within the creative events sector.
5 A checklist is essential
Run it as a spreadsheet or have it as a written list on a piece of paper but when you visit your chosen venue, have a checklist to hand. This ensures you ask the right questions at the right time.
And don’t forget, there is no such thing as a stupid question nor can you ask too many questions. You need this event to work for your business, irrespective of why you are holding it, and so you need the full picture.
You need transparency from the venue because the last thing you need is a bigger-than-expected invoice after the event because you didn’t know certain things were extra etc.
6 Importance and Urgency
YOUR event is important to YOUR business. It could be a make or break but even if it isn’t, do you want your brand ‘embarrassed’ by a poorly hosted event?
A great event will give you the all-important competitive edge, leaving your competitors slightly green with envy that yet again, your brand, known for pushing boundaries, has done it yet again.
You will only achieve this heady success if you create and nurture a sense of importance around your event organisation but more importantly, a sense of urgency.
But you need to balance this urgency within appropriate timeframes but there may be a time you need to get a little more urgent in your requests and when the results will materialise.
With a collaborative partnership, your venue should share the sense of importance and urgency around your event. If not, you will need to relentlessly drive it forward.
7 What can be done in-house?
All venues offer different services so the assumption that because your last venue did one thing, this venue will do it as part of the package is a dangerous one.
In-house suppliers could save you time and money or you may want to keep control over aspects that you consider important in the success of the event.
Consider carefully the in-house services on offer. Will they stop you chasing your tail? Will they deliver the quality you are looking for?
8 Everything. In. Writing.
We cannot spell it out strongly enough. Verbal agreements and discussions are not good enough when it comes to creative events such as launches and parties.
Everything needs to be agreed and in writing. By doing so, you prevent misfires and miscommunication. The smallest of things that prevent the event being the success that you need and want it to be.
Event planning and management take a lot of hard work. It is a feat of organisation and communication, but it can be done, especially if you turn to a recruitment agency for creative events staff who know how event planning really works.