Here at Elite Events, successful events are what we do best! We take the stress and time-consuming tasks of event planning away from our clients so they can focus on the smooth running of the event. All while we are ensuring it is a successful event for them, their attendees and their business goals.
In this blog post we have put together our ten steps to a successful event. Have a read through and see what you think;
- Begin Planning Early
If you’re thinking about an event in the New Year, start planning it now. You need to create a clear vision of what the goals for your event are and how it will ‘feel’. Large events will typically need to be planned 4-6 months in advance. If you need to plan an event in a shorter time than that, then contact our team for support immediately. Smaller events will need at least one month planning, but again we can often help if you have a shorter turnaround time than that.
Bonus Tip: Make sure all vendor contracts are completed a few weeks before the events to ensure the smooth running of your event on the day!
- Be Flexible
As you plan and organize your event you need to know that things will change. This may be the date of the event, the event timings or even the venue you imagined. By making sure you are flexible, you will find the run-up to the event much less stressful. Try and be flexible so you can meet the changing demands.
- Get Negotiating
While negotiating is not a typically British thing to do, there will often be room for negotiation when it comes to hotels and event suppliers. Make sure you set yourself a clear budget and then stick to it, through negotiation. The suppliers may put up a fight but ultimately they will want to win your business. There are often unforeseen costs within events, by saving money now you will have money available for these unforeseen costs at a later date.
Bonus Tip: Make sure you include an exit strategy in your contracts with suppliers in case the event needs to be cancelled or postponed.
- Assign Responsibilities and Outsource
Take the time to look at your event and break it into sections. For example, you may have registration, catering and transport. Assign team members to the individual sections to ensure each section of the event is looked after. You may choose to outsource this area of the event to Event Planners like us. We can then oversee the event and plan where your team are needed and where support is required.
- Share Communication
Use shared documents and WhatsApp groups to collaborate with your team. This will help keep everyone on the same page, up to date on the event and aware of any changes. The shared document needs to contain everything from vendor contracts and floor plans to attendee lists and team contact details. Again, this is something an experienced event planner, like our team, can support you with.
- Back-Up Plans
It is very rare that an event will run without a single hitch. You may not notice these hitches but that is because a back-up plan is in place. We would recommend that you have a back-up option for everything. For example, if the guest speaker falls ill on the day or is running late, how will you keep the audience entertained? If the food is running late, what can you do to fill 30 minutes? By having your ‘plan B’ ready you can quickly move onto the back up and the attendees will not notice any issues.
- Event Rehearsal
Just as all theatre shows and weddings do, have a run through of the event. Work your way through the entire event process a few weeks in advance. Your event team will need to be present to mentally walk through the event. This will give you an opportunity to see any complications that may occur and you will have time to find solutions for them before the big day of the event. We would recommend you do this again a few days before the event to ensure all complications have been ironed out.
- Photograph Everything
On the day of the event make sure you and your team photograph everything, encourage attendees to do the same too. Even if you have a photographer present, make sure you take photos as well. We have all heard the say that a picture paints a thousand words. By sharing these photos online you will create a feeling of FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) for future events, but also show what a successful event you have had. Make sure you get photos of the room, the event branding all attendees enjoying themselves.
- Get Digital
An event is the perfect way of increasing your brand online. Create a custom hashtag that attendees and you can use in the run up the event and on the day. Create the event on Facebook too so attendees can tag themselves as attending and check-in. Photos and discussions will then take place freely, all while your brand and event is being promoted for free. Upload any professional photos after the event and encourage attendees to tag themselves and share the photos.
Many events end when they end. However, if you want a really successful event then you need to create the perfect follow up. The event isn’t over when the attendees go home. Make sure you follow up with attendees by email after the event to get their feedback. Why not send them a freebie to remember the event, or send a photo of them at your event? By creating the perfect follow-up to your event you are not only completing the perfect event, but you are also making next year’s event planning much easier as your past attendees are ready and excited for the next one.
These are our recommended ten steps to a successful event. If you would like any support or advice with the planning of your event, or just need an extra pair of hands on the day – call our team.