There’s so much to think about when planning any event:
- Date – are there any clashes with similar events? Will people be in the town on that day?
- Times – what are the best times to hold such an event?
- Audience – who?
- Food and drinks – dietary options, alcohol (licences) / no alcohol, teas / coffees – milk, soya milk, water – lemons?
- Invitations – save the date invites or just straight in with an invitation? And then a reminder nearer the date!
- Graphics – what does the brand look like?
- Transport – what routes will people need to know to get there? Train, plane, car and foot and alternatives in case of any emergencies.
- Venue – size, light, air quality, flow of footfall, refreshments, parking, resources, etc
Exhausted yet? We’ve only just begun. One thing that’s going to reach a wider audience is social media, are you ready?
You are going to need to create excitement way before the event (at least 6 months in my experience as busy people have busy lives), as well as during (yes, live) and after.
Here are some things to add to your planning:
- Create a hashtag – use it everywhere (website, social media, email signature. Hell; even say it when you answer the phone!).
- Love the event – when you love something it’s so easy for others to love it too.
- Build a relationship with your supporters / sponsors – tag them in whenever you can and hopefully they’ll share/retweet your posts and you’ll reach their audience too.
- Ask delegates if you can tag them in on posts too; again you’ll have an opportunity to reach their audience and make them feel special.
- Share successes of past events, testimonials, happy photos.
- Invite conversations ‘what are you looking forward to doing at “our event name and hashtag”‘
- Create an offer – whether that’s early bird ticket prices, or free pens. Everyone likes something in return.
- Regularly remind people what, where and when the event is
My biggest bug bear with events is spamming, and I know I am not alone, so if you have a mailing list to encourage people to attend make sure you’re efficient with removing anyone who’s registered. Delegates want to feel welcome and wanted!