We can tell you that every event—every grand opening, corporate gala, employee picnic, every event—is “its own animal” as the saying goes. We know because we’ve been part of the event planning process—and many, many events—for far longer than we care to admit. And yet, while every event is incredibly different, the tips that take an event from ho-hum event to over-the-top success are remarkably similar.
Don’t plan without a goal.
The event planning to-do list can be long; if you don’t have a goal that guides you through that list, each event planning task is going to be just another to-do without any connection to your other event details. The solution: set a specific goal for your event that guides each decision you make. Your event goal can be especially important when booking the most essential detail: your venue (tips for choosing the right venue can be found here).
As soon as your event is confirmed, it’s time to start planning. Make sure you organize (or hire an event planner who is organized) as you plan to ensure that every detail is taken care of and confirmed. Don’t wait to get started; the best venues and vendors’ calendars fill up fast.
Select an event date that works for your targeted audience.
As tempting as it may be to book an event date that works for you, the attendance of your event depends upon a thorough consideration of your guests’ schedules. Statistically, Mondays and Fridays are on average lower attendance days. Once you have a date, create a promotion plan that targets your guests through targeted online and offline channels.
Focus on your guests.
Every corporate event decision and detail—EVERY DECISION—should be dependent on your targeted audience. Your venue should be selected based on the location of your targeted audience. Your entertainment should fit with guests demographic and tastes. If you are not able to make those matches, hire a professional with experience so you can make those matches and increase the chance of event success.
Take the old saying, “location, location, location” to heart.
Your venue is one of the most important details—if not the most important detail—so make sure your venue is the right choice for your event. Your event venue should check several key boxes off your event planning checklist, such as location, adequate space (and spaces), amenities, and other criteria. If you are not familiar with the area your event needs to be held in, outsource the selection and booking process; you and your guests are going to be glad you did as they enjoy the right venue for your event.
Don’t overlook the smallest detail.
An overlooked detail can be the crux of a corporate event gone wrong. Don’t leave one stone unturned as you plan the food, seating, schedule, signage, and all the other essentials of your corporate event. Don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations from vendors and agents throughout the event planning process.
Use the pros to coordinate all your entertainment needs.
Hire an entertainment agent for several key reasons, most notably as a time-saver. An entertainment agent can locate the right, quality entertainers for your guests, and handle any needs the entertainers might have—decreasing your workload and increasing the chance of event success.
With more than 25 plus years of experience in events, we can tell you from experience that you need to take the Scout motto to heart. As your event draws near, be prepared to “sweat the details” and adjust your plans accordingly the day of the event.