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Events Management 101: An Event Planning Checklist for Dummies

  • Events Management 101: An Event Planning Checklist for Dummies

    If you have never done it before, planning for your first ever event can be an overwhelming prospect.

    Handling behind-the-scene details such as organization, venue, and programme are, in fact, not an easy task to do. But, you should know that event planning is not a herculean task and can be done very well with the help of some useful tips and guides.

    So, no matter what type of event you are planning, this checklist is basic and works effectively for every event.

     

     

    Table of Contents

     

    Organisation: Working the Best of your Capabilities

    Staying focused and getting organised is essential for event planning. Otherwise, your task can all pile up and become devastating.

    To make the event planning a breeze, here are some easy tips.

    Treat It Like a Play

    Note that an event has moving parts where every session needs to be set up. Audio and visual equipment should be arranged, a venue should be chosen, speakers must be booked and many others. So, make sure every detail needed for the event is listed with an assigned staff.

    Make Separate Lists for Every Task

    Make sure you created a separate list for every task, regardless if you are going solo or have person-in-charge. Every task should have a timeline or table to ensure that the planning process is tracked carefully. And, a simple spreadsheet will suffice.

    Filter the Task

    This is the fun part! You will be able to filter the task through the spreadsheet you have made. Using the spreadsheet, you can now check the development of every task. At the same time, you can also get a chance to see which task needs more work and manpower.

    Goals: Establishing Strong Goals to Maximise Success

    When it comes to events, it is also important to clearly define your objectives before you get started.By doing so, it can be a great help when deciding future events. So, make sure you ask this questions first.

    What Is The Purpose Of My Event?

    Seriously, why should you organise an event? Do you want to build connections and foster friendship in your community? Or, simply want to educate and promote brand awareness?

    Who Will Be My Target Audience?

    Determine the type of niche or industry you are in. What type of solutions do you usually offer? If you are a real estate professional wanting to host a corporate event, then, your audience should be brokers, agents, property developers or buyers, perhaps.

    But, if you are hosting an event to launch a product like chocolate overload cake in cans, then target the foodies or younger generations.

    How Will I Engage, Attract And Delight The Event Attendees?

    Once you have identified your target audience, it will be easy for you to engage, attract and delight attendees. Get to know their behaviour, age demographics and interests so you can come up with a nurturing plan.

    Budget: Creating a Stress-Free Budget

    An event budget is one of the many obstacles that can make or break your event. So, you need to be realistic and create a stress-free budget that covers all possibilities. Here is an outline of event planning expenses whilst creating a budget.

    Onsite Expenses

    The cost and fees include the event venue, food and catering, and audio and visual equipment. Are you planning to rent a space for the event, hire catering services or use specialised equipment during the event? Make sure to list down the inclusion of each onsite expense to avoid hidden charges.

    Production Expenses

    This includes the resources and staff needed for the event. From planning to execution, the expenses begin. Usually, this comes from administrative expenses such as legal fees, accounting and salaries for the assigned staff. Apart from that, production expenses also involve travel expenses, communication costs, marketing and registration expenses.

    But, if you are hosting an event to launch a product like chocolate overload cake in cans, then target the foodies or younger generations.

    Third Party Vendors

    Of course, you will have to spend on decors such as accent lightings, flowers, centrepieces, and balloons. You will also need to spend on physical items not provided by the venue such as tables, chairs, tents, staging and delivery for setup. An event cannot be completed as well without entertainment. So, you will also need to pay for a speaker, musician or DJ fee.

    Emergency Funds

    Always make sure you also have emergency funds. Bear in mind that some instances like unforeseen expenses may arise on or during the events. So, expect the unexpected.

    Venue: Finding the Perfect Location

    We are moving up to the real substance of the event – the physical location. Technically, you will have to find a venue to suit your event. This includes food, décor and the overall ambience of the event.

    To set a tone for your event here is a handy checklist when scouting a venue.

    The Cost

    Determine the total cost of the venue and know what’s included on the cost. But, don’t hesitate to make negotiations later. Also, remember to confirm the date, the time and the written contract as well.

    The Location

    Choose a location based on its accessibility. Is it near the train or bus station? Check if it near the public transport links. Make sure it also has enough parking space for the attendees bringing their cars to attend your event.

    Capacity

    How many participants are you expecting to come? Identify the right size of your event and ensure that attendees can also move comfortably. Also, look for a venue that does not require too much decorating since setting up decors can also consume space.

    Services and Facilities

    Get to know the type of services and facilities a location can offer. This includes AV equipment, security, comfort rooms, waiting area, and services for clean-up before and after the event.

    Weather

    Most likely, participants cancel their reservation when there is heavy rain pours. So, make sure you also have a backup plan when the weather is not cooperating with your event. Or else, always check the weather forecasts and updates on your chosen event date.

    Programme: Developing a Standout Event Agenda

    So, you’ve selected a perfect venue for your event. Now it’s time to develop an event programme that you want to duplicate so that you can make attendees engage before, during and after the event.

    Here are the factors you should consider first.

    Event Programme Options

    Do you want to host a community event, workshops, press briefings or exclusive party gatherings? Each of this option has its own opportunities and PR purposes but it also has limitations. So, identify the type of hosting you want to do.

    Going Deeper with Event Objectives

    Right from the start of the event planning process, you have to be specific with your goals. But, as you go deeper, you must also need to simplify your event objectives. Determine how you will include delegate participation during the event. Or, do you have the access to speakers you want to include in your programme?

    These factors should be viewed in the context of your overall event planning strategy.

    Create an Engaging Event Content

    Event attendees are craving experiences that can sweeps off their feet, especially the younger generation. So, look for new, innovative ideas and create meaningful moments for your attendees.

    Speaker/Entertainment: Selecting the Right Influencer

    Don’t get too focused on practical logistics and marketing. Remember, one of the major focal points of your event are the guest speakers and entertainment. They command the most attention and deliver the best goods.

    So, how can you be so sure if you have booked the right influencer? Here are the 3 factors to consider.

    Understand What You Want For Your Event

    What’s the purpose of getting a speaker and what do you expect them to bring to your event? Do you want them to set up a lively mood or simply to educate your attendees? Therefore, take the time to review the background or expertise of the influencer you need for your event.

    Double Check the Availability

    Bear in mind that these speakers have other activities as well. So, it is important to know their availability and that includes the travel time. Book as early as possible and always double check their availability. Also, make sure you have a second choice in case your desired influencer is not available.

    Take a Look at Your Demographics

    The hidden secret of getting the right speaker is to ensure that they match your event attendees’ general demographic. That way, the speaker can perfectly address the audience and set the right tone of the event.

    Marketing: Having People Queuing to Sign Up

    Needless to say, there will be no event to speak off if there are no people attending. So, you need to maximise your marketing strategies to lure a lot of attendees. How will you do that?

    Fortunately, the best way to target potential guest is through social media. Check out this 3 effective ways to utilise social media for your upcoming event.

    The Hashtag Symbol

    A lot of people are still wondering why most social media posts bear hashtags in content. But, do you know that creating hashtags can help put your content in front of the people searching for keywords and phrases? Just make sure it is concise, unique and easy to remember.

    Video Highlights

    Social media users these days need something that can uplift their mood. So, why not create a content with inspiring quotes from your event speakers? This can help generate enthusiasm and passion for your event.

    Speakers’ Photos with Motivating Quotes

    Social media users these days need something that can uplift their mood. So, why not create a content with inspiring quotes from your event speakers? This can help generate enthusiasm and passion for your event.

    The Bottom-line

    Now that we have listed down the ultimate event planning guide, rest assured you will be able to manage your upcoming event well. Of course, you need a handful of help from the people around you. But, it can also be convenient to use an event management platform. Signup to Fellopages today for a versatile and seamless workflow in event management.

    References

    How to Plan and Organize a Big Event, Quickanddirtytips.com

    When it comes to events, define your purpose and ROI first, Clickz.com

    How to Create Your Event Budget, Helloendless.com

    The Ultimate Checklist for Choosing a Venue, Tagvenue.com

    10 Creative Event Concepts That You Will Want to Duplicate, Blog.sli.do

    5 Tips to Choose the Perfect Speaker for Your Conference, Brand24.com

    How to Use Social Media to Promote Your Next Event, Socialmediaexplorer.com