Event Planning: Five Key Tips For Success

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When it comes to event planning, it’s important to make sure that everything runs as smoothly as possible…or at least, that’s how it must appear to guests!

Events can range from large galas and media launches to stakeholder luncheons and bespoke experiences…and these only scratch the surface!

However, the very nature of it being an “event” means that it will be memorable and leave a lasting impression on those in attendance. There’s so much to consider when it comes to event planning, from budget and guests to location and food, and everything in between.

Here are our top tips that you can implement from the get-go to ensure your event is a success.

The secret: planning is key!

Get planning

In the initial stages of event planning, do thorough research to ensure you are abiding by all rules.  Do you need special permits or licences to host your event at your desired location?  Is there a maximum number of guests the space can have, or any curfews?

If you’re unsure, pick up the phone and ask your local councils and government bodies – they are always happy to help to ensure that your event goes off without a hitch.

Use a spreadsheet to keep track of the critical elements of your event that you’ve locked in. Closer to the time, prepare a run sheet to circulate with all involved. This will help to guide your team and keep the event on track.

Utilise all forms of media

First things first, jump onto online event listing websites such as Eventfinda and AroundYou to promote your event to the community. These platforms allow you to easily upload and share your event information online to drive participation or ticket sales.

While event listings are a good start, a great piece of media coverage can do wonders for your brand’s reputation and event promotion. However, your brand or event will not be relevant to every single journalist, so being selective is important.

Large-scale community events are likely to be appropriate for the daily papers, radio and TV stations local to the area. If it’s the opening of the newest offering from a luxury hotel chain, you might consider inviting travel writers and business journalists. For the launch of a fashion brand, invite the editors of the glossy mags you want your product to be seen in.

Remember that journalists have busy schedules, so it pays to plan in advance!

Partner with like-minded brands

Engaging similar brands to be involved with your event elevates your own brand’s positioning, saves costs and builds mutually beneficial relationships. For example, if your event is an intimate long lunch, why not partner with a local fine dining restaurant to provide the food and beverage offering? If it’s a product launch, consider seeking out similar (but not competing) brands partner to create a gift bag for the guests.

Keep in mind these partnerships need to be beneficial for both parties, so think about what you can offer prior to reaching out to these brands.

Get social

While you certainly don’t want your guests to be glued to their phones, you do want people to share the wonderful experience they are having with your brand! If appropriate, event hosts should encourage their guests to get social the right way.

In your event planning, you could consider engaging a well-known personality as an ambassador for the event to kick off the social chatter and encourage attendance in the lead-up. At the event itself, it can be as simple as creating a dedicated event hashtag, all the way through to having a photo booth that shares snaps directly to guests’ social media channels.

Whatever you choose, positive social chatter goes a long way in ensuring that your brand is positively perceived and reaches new markets.

Hire a photographer

The state of the media industry today means newsrooms and picture desks are under-resourced, so locking in a news photographer to attend your event is no longer an easy feat. Instead, we recommend you hire a freelance photographer to ensure you get some great snaps of the event, which can then be supplied for post-event stories and social pages.

As well as for media purposes, professional event photos are great mementos for you, as well as for social media content.

Overall, consistency is key!

It’s important to make sure that every element of the event reflects your brand identity from start to finish. Don’t go overboard in trying to make your event (and brand) something it’s not.  Be realistic from the start in terms of your budget and deliverables, and work with what you have to create an event that is memorable for all the right reasons!

What are your top tips to hosting a great event? Let us know in the comments below.

Does your brand need assistance with event planning?

P4 Group provides services to assist with events, from publicity and social media support to ambassador engagement and event planning and management. Can we support you to ensure your event is a success? Contact us today.