As an event planner, you might have used your best resources and ideas to execute a smooth event for your client. But did it live up to your client’s expectations? Were the sound and lights favorable? Was the catering decent?
Learn about the needs and expectations of your target market to improve your future business and marketing strategies through curated post-event surveys. Post-event surveys often provide the most meaningful feedback in knowing if your efforts were successful from the attendees’ perspective.
To ensure the highest participation rate, send your post-event survey to attendees as soon as the event has ended, while their experience is fresh in their minds. The most important information collected from post-event surveys is whether attendees found value in the event, whether it was worth their investment of time and resources, and whether they would participate in the event again.
Online surveys are the most useful – you can get the responses faster than collecting them manually and collate data to help further your research. When creating the survey, keep it short — under 10 questions is best — and only use one or two open response answers. People will be more likely to answer the survey if it contains choices instead of requiring them to write answers to everything.
Below are samples of questions to ask in your next post-event survey:
How would you rate the overall outcome of this event?
How would you rate the competence of the event staff?
Do such events help in increasing visibility for the company?
Was there a networking opportunity for attendees?
What could the event organizers have done differently?
Compared to other similar events you have attended, how does this event compare?
Can the information you gathered from this session be applied to your business?
Collecting feedback from your attendees is the best way to make your events better and better each time. You want to keep your current audience and make it grow. Use the feedback to see what works and what doesn’t work and plan accordingly. You can go from being a good event planner to a great one simply by listening to the people who experience your events first-hand.
The seating arrangement at your event is a deciding factor in making or breaking the event. The venue for any event is chosen after examining the layout and the space available. However, venue seating charts are often deceiving and are not good measures of how many people can be placed or seated comfortably. Before event planners can pack in as many attendees as the venue can allow, it must be determined what kind of seating will be used and in what configuration.
The dynamics, networking and participation at the event depends on seating. Depending on the objectives of the meeting or the event, assigned seats or tables can be beneficial.
Deciding the type of seating at events depends on some factors like – where the food will be served, if the attendees will be taking notes or using laptops during the sessions, if there will be an award ceremony that requires people to walk up to the stage, the shape and size of the stage and the size of the audience.
The different types of seating generally used are:
Theater style seating
Classroom style seating
Round table/cluster seating
To ensure that you are selecting the best seating solution for your event, ask yourself what is needed and what is available. What you need will be determined by the size of the audience and the itinerary of the sessions held during the event. Whether you are planning an award show or a training seminar, specific furniture and configurations will be more functional than others.
Photos on Instagram are no longer only selfies or adorable babies or special moments captured at fancy places. This app has quickly gained an increased presence in online marketing, as more and more users are jumping on the photo sharing bandwagon.
Though the platform was not originally meant for marketing, it has proven to be a significant tool in creating followers and customers to increase brand awareness and loyalty.
Having already figured out how to promote their events on other sites like Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin, event marketers are now adopting Instagram. Event attendees also share photos of their experience at the event as it fosters conversation among them. One of the best features of Instagram is that you are allowed to tag your photos using relevant hashtags which makes it easier for you to collect all the images from your event, see what photos from your event are being shared by others, and also leads people to you, if they are looking for your work.
Here are a few tips on how to make the best use of this app for your next event:
1. Firstly, being an active user is important – keep your profile as current as you would, your Facebook and Twitter pages. Keep aside a posting schedule daily with some pictures and videos instead of randomly spamming your followers.
2. Study or follow other similar brands and agencies to get a better idea of what your target market expects and what to deliver.
3. By playing around with the various special filters, make your images look good and maintain uniformity in your images so they all look consistent and allow followers to recognize your work.
4. Use hashtags correctly, create your own and designate it to your organization. For example, if you organize live events, you can use the #liveevents hashtag with all your photos. A unique and well-thought out hashtag can not only make it easier for people to remember your event, it can also encourage them to share your hashtag with others. Because of this, you can encourage your attendees to share their photos by providing them with a specific event hashtag.
5. The type of pictures you share entirely depends on how you want to project your brand – you can post past event photos, photos of performers/entertainment, the console, props, the venue, food and so on. When you share behind-the-scenes photos – of your team hard at work, the set up, and other aspects of event planning, your brand feels more authentic as you are making yourself vulnerable to your target market by establishing an emotional connect.
6. The latest upgrade in the app, Instavid, also allows you to take 15 second videos. What more can we say?
7. Cross promote your Instagram account on all your other platforms by linking them for more visibility.
8. Interact with your followers if they leave behind comments on your pictures.
It’s easy to create a buzz for your event by using Instagram correctly; it only requires a bit of creativity and thought.
The event management industry is a complex & dynamic environment, and comprises of a wide variety of events.
In this post today, we intend to focus on the kinds of corporate/business events that event planning agencies often organize.
Conferences and Seminars:
Seminars and conferences can focus on internal operations and be limited only to your organization; or they can be used as vehicles for company promotion.
A conference is a participatory meeting or a gathering of members of organizations, designed for discussion, fact finding and problem-solving. It facilitates the exchange of information and gives an opportunity to discuss matters of common interest. Conferences generally have keynote speakers and breakout sessions by topic. They can be held over one or two days or sometimes longer.
Seminars on the other hand are usually smaller in terms of targeted audience size, lasting over a couple of hours with single or multiple speakers.
The debut of a product into the market defines a product launch. It signifies the point at which consumers first have access to a new product. Product launch events are important and require attention from the media and the public.
These launches give the public and the media a chance to hear everything about the product before any negative reviews are given. The task of putting together these product launch events could fall to a company employee who organizes meetings or an outside company.
Trade missions and Road Shows:
Trade missions are international trips by government officials and business people, organized for the purpose of exploring international business opportunities. A trade mission is a way in which countries or organisations can seek out potential buyers and sellers.
Roadshows can be small training sessions tailored for your colleague’s needs or much larger scale events in public spaces to reach out to potential customers.
Every company reaches a point in their annual operations or project milestones that calls for a celebration. Awards ceremonies can be held to honor team members who have gone beyond the call of duty, or to compliment the achievements of people within your industry.
Executive Retreats and Team Building Programs:
The primary or only occasion during the year – when an organization and it’s employees meet at a site away from their primary edifice. The objective is to generally offer a creative environment from which they can focus on clear, specific goals and objectives for the coming year.
Executive retreats have a more casual ambiance while team building events define team roles, and are useful tools for improving communication withing the organization and improving productivity.
Exhibitions and Trade Shows:
Event planning for trade shows involves negotiating sponsorship rates for trade show booth space, advertising and promotion at the event, and also sometimes design and execution of the trade show booth. They are important lead-generating activities.
Themed Office Celebrations:
Corporate office celebrations provide great opportunities to socialize with colleagues and co-workers. Celebrated in almost all organizations, they encourage the employees to generally bond over drinks and dinner.
Theme corporate parties also provide great opportunities to instigate guest interactions. The scope for paying attention to detail is huge, with the costumes and decor elements creating a fantasy environment.
Some corporate event agencies also manage lifestyle events like high profile luncheons, fashion shows and press events.
These are a few common business events that event managers generally execute, under the corporate event umbrella.
The fun loving, energetic Marketing Manager from Kansas City, MO, Kaitlin is the one who makes sure the office is always running smoothly.
When picking a venue for your event you have two main categories to choose from. You could go for a traditional venue or you could find a unique non-traditional event venue.
Picking a traditional venue is easy. If you do things the traditional way you could pick a hotel ballroom, a resort, convention center, or banquet hall. These venues are reliable and have been used time and time. They are tried and true. However, they are a bit boring and you can bet your guest will not remember the venue after the night. Events are becoming more and more of an immersive experience planners and event professionals alike are turning to non-traditional venues to find that extra wow factor.
So what is a non-traditional event venue? Non-traditional event venues are places that are generally not created for events as their main purpose. There are many types of non-traditional venues for your event. Two categories come to mind when thinking about non-traditional event venues; architectural spaces, experiential venues. We will break down the two categories in the following paragraphs.
The first type of non-traditional event venue are architectural spaces. These are interesting architectural spaces such as a warehouse, an airplane hangar, a rooftop, or train station. Below is a photo from an event where a manufacturing warehouse was transformed into a venue.
The second type of non-traditional event venue are experiential venues. These types of venues offer some sort of attraction that people would normally go visit whether there was an event or not. Zoos, botanical gardens, museums, and art galleries fall under this category.
When deciding if a non-traditional event venue is right for you, ask yourself “Will this add to my event cause or take away from it?” If you are planning a gala to raise help for animals, using a non-traditional event venue like a zoo may be perfect for your event. It will add a lot to the theme and create a fun and immersive experience for your guests.
However, there are a few things to keep in mind when choosing a non-traditional event venue as they do present a unique set of challenges when planning. Because non-traditional venues are not typically only event venues and used for other purposes during the day, they are likely to not have as much in-house options as a traditional venue would. You will more than likely need to find your own caterer, furniture rentals and more. However, this is not necessarily a bad thing and can help you create a truly unique and one of a kind event. Below are a few things to consider when looking at non-traditional event venues:
Food and Drink
While almost all traditional venues come with options for catering and beverages, it is not the case for non-traditional venues. Some non-traditional event venues may give you a list of preferred caterers but almost all will allow you to choose your favorite to bring in. Often a non-traditional venue will also allow you to bring in your own bartenders and alcohol which can save you huge amounts of money at your event.
Often traditional event venues will provide your events with tables, chairs, power and sometimes even linens necessary to make your event a success. This is not always the case with non-traditional event venues. When seeking out a non-traditional event venue be sure to see what is included in your venue rental. You may need to rent out chairs, tables, and more from an event rental company. If you are having your event somewhere like a parking lot or an airplane hangar you should also check on what the power limitations are. In non-traditional venues you are more likely to need to bring in a generator as your power supply.
Another important factor to consider when choosing a non-traditional event venue is the safety of your guests. While safety should always be an important factor when planning events, it will need special attention when choosing a non-traditional event venue. These venues are often they are not designed for events and do not have on staff event security. Be sure to check with the venue to see if you need to hire outside security before your event.
Now you have a great idea of how to start seeking out and looking for your perfect non-traditional event venue. Non-traditional event venues may be a little bit more work while planning but they pay off is definitely worth it. If the planning is too much hire an event planner to help you through the process. If you do go with a non-traditional event venue your event will be extremely memorable. You will be rewarded greatly for thinking outside the box and choosing a unique and fun venue!
Whether you are planning a real time conference, gathering or a virtual class, social media can be an inexpensive and cost-effective way to create buzz or attract an audience and turn a one off event into a recurring one.
The trick is to know what will not only help you create that buzz about your event but also help keep in touch with your consumers pre and post the event. This blog contains a few useful tips designed to make your event shine along with your company.
The first step is to make people aware about your company products and services and subsequently about the event you plan to have. The end consumer could be corporate or an individual, mediums exist for every kind of target audience.
Marketing your event through Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, through a blog and also through other media platforms available online goes a long way in achieving this.
Using site specific features to promote your company and event help you in creating a buzz about your brand to the target audience, for example simple things like creating your own hash tag on twitter and constantly tweeting or creating your own company page or event page on Facebook. Beyond a certain point if you have enough generic content, the members and followers tend to create your content for you.
Along with the well known websites that may help you create the hype you are looking for or market your brand to the right audience, there are many other lesser known but extremely effective ways to do the same, there are many online calendars or local tv stations who host a wide variety of events which allow free postings.
For an event specifically you could actually use online registration tools to collect payments and sponsorship amounts hassle free.
Many websites like Foursquare offer a platform where participants would actually check – in at your event , the incentive for them being to gain extra points or you could also consider having live twitter updates during the event, and the best of all live video streaming of the event to the event website for people who are not physically attending.
After your event is completed, many clients often tend to over look the importance of keeping in touch with consumers, which can be very important for customer retention, constantly using the above mentioned mediums for product and company updates can be very effective to keep people engaged and interested until the next event happens.
Planning an event for your brand can be a daunting task, something that requires a lot of concentration. There are many last minute challenges that need to be met. Clear communication, and collaboration between the event manager and the client can help overcome this . The best way is to develop and distribute a Pre-Event Memo.
While managing events, details with regard to the event requirements and the client’s objectives should always be first on your minds. However, most times, there is a certain level of disconnect between your own team and the people the client assigns from his team to work on the event. This is the main reason that a Pre-Event Memo absolutely needs to be a part of event plans.
This memo carries all the detailed information pertaining to the general functionality and logistics involved in planning an event. This would act as a ready reckon-er for all the information everyone (working on the event) would need, with specific responsibilities assigned to each person, and all other relevant information regarding the event flow.
Some straightforward, yet most necessary details are covered within this memo, are -
1) Event date, time and location.
2) Key phone numbers and email addresses
3) Venue floor-plan
4) Equipment element list
5) Drawing of setup floor-plan with sketch-up images displaying exact placement of stage.
6) List of panels (along with sizes), for company branding at the event
7) Information on speakers and general event flow.
8) List of responsibilities given to each individual working on the event.
9) List of Invitees
10) Timings of conducting dry-runs.
The aim of this Memo is to provide everyone involved, with a hands-on knowledge of virtually ANYTHING pertaining to the event. It is important, however, that this memo be distributed at least a week before the event, to allow suggestions and minor changes to take place without any hiccups.
This allows for a healthy client-event manager interaction, and helps build confidence among the people associated with the event; it encourages management authority to make last minute changes to the event flow (if required) without hesitation.
In conclusion, there is much emphasis riding on an event as a catalyst that represents a brand, and enhances the brand’s image. There is always a desire to employ every tool available to make the event a remarkable and memorable one, and the pre-event memo helps to achieve this in a highly professional and sophisticated way. It inspires all involved, and paves the way for events to be conducted with the highest standards of quality and organization.
Design a venue floor-plan that helps provide details about all entry, exit, charging points, and access to conveniences. A copy of this floor-plan should be included within the event paraphernalia given to all attendees. These tiny details help make the event more organized and at the same time provides attendees all information regarding what they require, saving them the trouble of finding an event coordinator any time they require something.
On – Ground Team Recruit your friendliest, most knowledgeable employees to remain scattered throughout the venue so someone is always available to answer attendee questions — and make sure they stand out! For example, your employees can wear company badges attached to their shirt pockets. People will have lots of questions. Making it easy to find and identify event point persons will thrill attendees and nip frustration in the bud.
Welcome and Survival Kit
A welcome packet that includes a map, nearby places to eat, local activities, taxi or car service contact information, and emergency phone numbers accompanied by Hand Sanitizers, Protein Bars, a mini first-aid kit, Chocolates and an Energy Drink goes a long way in terms of appreciative value and makes guests feel like royalty. Many attendees may be coming from out of town, and this would help them feel at ease navigating a new city or location.
Designate an area where people can lounge around, have one-on-one discussions, check their email, and make phone calls. This should ideally be space where people can escape the conference and be free to deal with any tasks they might have at hand. Doing this will prevent attendees from leaving the event when they need a break and will help avoid the risk of them not coming back.
ID Tags with Lanyards and Jackets
There should be a clear distinction in the ID Cards given to different people at the event; you should differentiate between partners, sponsors, VIP,customers and company employees. It will make the attendees feel special to be part of a group, recognized for their relationship with your company, and easier to network with others who are part of their group.
Lighting during events has an unbelievable impact on the mood of the audience attending, the key is to always make sure the light is just right for every session taking place. For example, during a presentation the lights should be dim but at the same time bright enough for people to take notes or during a cocktail reception the lights should be ambient helping people relax. We always recommend that your clients should control all event lighting from the console and have preset combinations for every segment of a particular event.
After invitations have been sent and RSVP done, it can be advisable to have a calling unit doing a round of calls to the invitees asking them if they need any help making their bookings or any help with regards to them attending. All queries should be noted and duly acted upon. This goes a long way in invitees feeling special and ensures there are minimal drop-outs.
Post Event Follow-Up
After the event, it is a good practice to have the same calling unit do a round of calls to all who attended asking for their feedback and providing them access to the presentations from the event.This helps keep in touch with customers well after the event is completed and helps keep them posted on any other initiatives you might be planning.
Provide real-time updates on sessions and presentations from your event on available media like Facebook, Twitter and the event website. Let people sign-up with their information and access the event live on the event website as it happens, this would help reach a wider audience, and if people cancel, alert them of the opening. Also generating hype of the event on all available media before the event happens would help reach a wider audience. Concentrated email marketing campaigns to a broad audience can play a big part.
Effective Registration Process
Registration is a thorn in everyone’s side — attendees and conference organizers. Having a minimum of two people at the registration desk helps carry out registrations with ease. One person ticks out the persons name from the list, the second person hands over the id card and collects the persons visiting card. Alternately, what we recommend to clients is to set-up an online registration portal, to help ease out the process of pre-event registration and RSVP.