As a business owner, you are always on the lookout for the next client, or the next thing you can do to help your business thrive.
I often feel we have started focusing on digital too much, and keep forgetting the power of meeting people face to face, and talking to them in person. Hosting a company event for past, current and future clients, or organizing a networking meetup can go a long way in promoting your business, and helping you reach out to people you may not yet know.
Here are a few tips to help you make sure the event goes down smoothly:
Start Planning on Time
On time can be a rather relative notion, but depending on the size of the event, anything from six months to three months in advance is optimal. Leaving everything to the last minute means a lot of vendors or caterers will already be booked, and not giving people enough notice will just shorten your guest list.
Organizing an event yourself is mission impossible, unless you only plan to invite ten people. Anything larger than that will require the help of your team. You will most likely not be putting everything else aside to work on this event either. Juggling your work and event planning will not be easy, and event management in itself is not a one man job. Make sure everyone has a task to work on, and more importantly, make sure they all communicate well through the designated channels.
Know your Options
There will be dozens of options in terms of venue and food choices. Don’t set your eyes on only one location, cast a wider net, and feel out different prices. Be ready to negotiate, but establish a bottom line – that way you will always know what wiggle room you have at your disposal.
If you are putting together an event outside your home town, you are well advised to turn to professionals in destination event management. This will save you a lot of time on getting to know a certain area, as you will be tapping in to the ready-made resources of a DMC.
Always Have a Backup Plan
Chances are that something is going to go wrong – the important thing is not to panic, and to have a failsafe plan in place. If a key speaker cancels, make sure you have someone on a waiting list to jump in. If it rains, and you are holding the event outside, make sure you have agreed with the vendor that you can move to a different part of the venue. The things you need to back up are only the most important building blocks of the event – you don’t need to back up every minute detail. Just stay calm, and figure out a solution.
Run a Test
Before the actual event, run a test to see where people will be coming in, what the potential bottlenecks are, where you will be placing what, and so on. This is also the time to make sure every member of your team knows where they need to be at what time. You will see what you need to improve on the spot, which is why it is important to do the test run at the venue itself, and easily amend anything that is missing, instead of realizing you forgot to place the name tags close enough to the door while a queue is forming outside.
We hope that these tips will help you manage your next event well, and help you achieve the success you have been hoping for since the day you first opened the doors of your business.