I can't believe Christmas is upon us again. Honestly it feels like it was yesterday that I wished Happy New Year to everyone.
I'm one of those people who love Christmas. I really love getting together with family and friends to celebrate, share some amazing food and have great chats and laughs over a few bubbles. It's also a great time of the year to organise a "thank you" event for your clients, suppliers, staff and all those people who contribute to and support your business.
There is nothing like a memorable event to show your appreciation, give people an experience that they will remember and make an emotional association with your brand.
Having worked in events management for over 13 years I have decided to share some tips (and a gift) with you and hopefully make your life easier when you plan your next event.
Download my Fab Events Planner and templates here for free.
1. Develop your event concept and strategy
Before you start thinking about the logistics of your event, consider what you are trying to achieve. What's your event's main goal and how you are planning to achieve it.
Events are great for:
Building brand awareness and positioning you as an authority in your industry.
Connecting with your target marketing, and build the “know, like and trust” factors quickly.
Showcase what you do and give participants a taste of how it feels like working with you.
Build a community around your brand.
Connect and collaborate with influencers and industry experts.
and so much more.
Think about your guests and consider their needs and wants, and how you can leverage your event to build your brand and your audience.
2. Break it down into small tasks and set up a time frame
When it comes to events, it's better to organise it well in advance to ensure you have time to think and organise every detail. Breaking down your tasks and setting up a time frame will help you feel more in control and stay on track for the big day.
Even small events like a seminar or workshop need to be properly planned. Trust me on this one.
Remember to involve your team or anyone helping you out on the day. Make sure they understand what’s required of them, so you’re all on the same page.
My advice is to not run an event on your own. If you’re a ‘solopreneur’, engage help from someone - even your partner or a friend. So you can focus on delivering the content and engaging with people.
3. Make it interesting and appealing
Whether you are trying to promote your brand, launch a new product, educate your audience or simply thank your contributors, make sure your event has appealing elements that will attract your guests.
Things to consider: Your speakers, content, gifts, music, presentations, food, drinks, decoration, prizes, etc... in short, what people will get from attending your event.
Even if you have great speakers, and that’s obviously the number 1 reason people would want to attend your event, adding a “proseco and fab grazing platter on arrival” will add extra appeal and excitement. And that’s what you want! You want your guests to feel super excited and sharing your event on social media.
I know that budget can be a limiting factor, but remember that your event is a representation of your brand.
4. Design a communications campaign that speaks directly to your audience.
There is no point in running an event if no one shows up. Plan well in advance how you will promote your event.
Is it a guests-only event or are you going to sell tickets? Whichever event you’re planning give your guests plenty of notice and a dead line to RSVP. Oh, and don’t forget to keep your guest list updated.
If your event is a paid event, organise your ticketing system before launching your marketing campaign. Consider your audience before deciding which channels you will use, whether you will only promote it online or if you will use print advertising or direct mail for more targeted events.
Also, think whether the media could have an interest in your event and if you could benefit from media exposure. If the answer is yes, prepare a press release and consider inviting local media to attend.
Collaborating with other business or engaging with influencers to promote your event can be highly effective. Nothing like an endorsement from someone your target market trust to boost your numbers.
>> I’ve written extensively about how to promote your event online here: 15 Ways to Promote your Event Online.
Whichever channels you decide to use, always keep your target market front and centre.
5. Create a detailed running sheet
By creating a running sheet for yourself and for anyone who will be helping and working at your event, you will ensure the event runs smoothly.
Some tasks seem really obvious and simple, but when there is a lot going on it’s better to have everything written down and have everyone on the same page. Make sure you brief your team when you hand the running sheets over and give them the opportunity to ask questions.
Trust me on this, it’s so easy to forget things during the event, because there’s a lot going on. Detailed running sheets will keep everyone on track.
6. Share photos and videos of your event on Social Media
People love to see photos and videos of an event they have attended. In fact, more and more people nowadays take photos and videos of events and publish them on their own channels, which great for you.
Make sure you publish photos of your event on your website and on social media platforms and tag anyone who contributed. In fact, ask your team or helper to post some during the event too. It creates buzz and excitement. Your guests will love to feel part of it, and it will help you promote your next event.
7. Don’t reinvent the wheel. Get your free copy of Fab Events Plan & Check List to help you organise a stress-free event.
Throughout my professional life I've organised, managed and promoted hundreds of events from workshops, seminars, awards nights, social events, expos and more.
During all these years I've created event planners, check lists and templates that make the whole process easy and stress-free.
You don’t need to reinvent the wheel.
You can download my Fab Events Planner and templates here for free and benefit from my experience. Add your own spin and flavour to it to make it your own.
If you’re interested in running fabulous events for your business, check this other blog here: How to Run a Memorable Business Event.
Cheers to your event success!