How to Plan an Event: A Simple 8-Step Guide

Event management requires a lot of planning not only for the actual event but also for every tedious task that comes along with it. While you are planning an event you can choose from the best event management software to help you out, but how are you going to select which software suits your needs? 

 

Don’t worry, we have it all covered. 

 

How to plan an effective event in simple 8-steps?

 

1. Goals and Timeline

Planning an event requires a massive undertaking. Before planning, you have to think about what you wish to achieve from the event. Is this event going to drive sales revenue, educate your customers, grow your customer base or even attract potential employees for recruitment purposes? 

Usually, only about 49% of businesses use event marketing for their multi-channel marketing campaigns. So, this means that event necessarily is not the best choice for gaining a milestone regarding your business objectives. 

However, if you are all set to organise an event and move forward with it, you will have to select a goal to identify your target audience. For example, an event is being organised to educate your customer about the benefits of CRM as well as give them a demo of your platform. 

Next up, you have to pick a timeline. The best time to not organise events is when most businesses in your industry are planning conferences. The reasons are: it leads to decreased turnout, harder to compete in the market, and increased rental prices. 

Set a date that is far enough and avoids any big happenings in the industry to stand out and avoid burning out. 

 

2. Budget 

Budgeting in events is extremely important. You will have to draft a complete list of how you plan on paying for all the items used. Events used to be pricey. From food catering, accommodation arrangements to technical equipment renting etc. With the pandemic, there has been a sharp rise in online events. While these tend to be less expensive, you can use the allocated budget for marketing to reach as many consumers as possible. 

 

3. Finding the venue 

Finding a venue can be hard. Considering you are organising the event in the city you reside in, you will need to look for hotels that can accommodate your guest list. If you plan on a small event, it will be far easier to find a hotel to organise it. In case of larger events, you will have to ensure that your consumers can find the place on the map and reach it. An off=beat path hotel is going to deter them from visiting.

Use popular event venues list, referrals from other businesses, and even local trade publications. Do not, under any circumstance, forget to schedule a tour. Things can be different from what they appear in a picture. It can be better than you expected, or it can be worse. It is your responsibility to find out.

 

 

4. Software

With all the software out there to help event managers, which one will you choose to fit your needs? 

No need to worry, as event management software tends to be helpful in planning, organising as well as post-event processes, regardless of the type of event. 

You can use it for tickets and sending promotions and payment confirmations to customers using the event booking software. Use digital signage software for signs at the actual event. Web conferencing software can be extra helpful if you plan on organising a hybrid event. Email marketing and social media management software can be used for marketing and promotions. To improve the attendee experience, offer mobile event apps. 

Before you go out investing into each of these individually, you can consider trying out Optimiser's event management suite that is equipped with AI-enabled automation. The intelligent software will adapt to your individual needs and allow you to provide the best possible attendee experience while reducing the workload on you. You can integrate it with the marketing suite to combine your promotional strategies to align with the event planning strategy. 

 

5. Find your vendors 

Sometimes, depending upon the venue chosen, you can receive special offers when you use in-house catering and A/V offerings. If you are unable to bring an outside vendor, you can check out the promotions offered by the venue and take advantage of them.

However, if you can bring in third-party vendors, make sure to opt for the best deal possible.  

You will need to look for much more than food, equipment and sound systems. You will need to arrange transportation. If you have guests flying from different cities, you will have to arrange a means to commute to and from the venue as well as accommodation. 

Wellness offerings will include dog/ kids nursery, fitness classes upon stay and much more. A temping agency will be required to ensure that you are not running low on staff on the big day. Security to maintain a secure and safe event space for you as well as your guests. A source of entertainment is needed because events are not all about business. Guests need to have their minds nourished after a long day. 

 

6. Subject matters

Which subject matter is going to get the attention of the people? You will have to begin by figuring this out. It could be the speakers, it could be the content, it could even be the venue that speaks for itself and sets an ambience. You will have to find a source that will allow the guests to be excited and motivated to attend your event. 

For example, say you are planning an author's meet. And a Nobel winning author has agreed to speak on drafting your first novel and how to find a publisher. 

People are far more likely to attend when they realise that the advice is going to come from someone who has not only gone through the process of novel writing but also won one of the most prestigious awards for it.

 

 

 

7. Marketing campaign

You will need to market the event. Even if you have a Nobel winning author coming up, you will need to create a buzz. However will people know if you don't tell them?

Build a theme of your marketing campaign that ties with the goals you set for the event and select your target audience. Continuing with the example of the Author's meet. Your target audience will include budding authors, seeking out advice on how to write well and how to publish better. 

You can employ as many channels as you want to engage with the audience and get their attention. The core theme should not be lost in time. Consumers tend to notice this very quickly and can lose interest if anything is moved. One of the best marketing software in the UK is Optimiser with its integrated marketing suite. 

 

8. Build relationships with attendees

The event may not have happened yet, but you will need to lay some groundwork to establish a relationship with your customers. It can be sending a welcome mail or an engaging survey. The point is to interact with them and grow these relationships. 

 

Summary

In short, planning an event takes an ample amount of time therefore make sure that you choose a date that allows you to plan an event and execute it as strategically as possible.

 

 

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