Events are always good fun, and as the world begins to return to normal more events are popping up everywhere.
Here are some tips for organising your first event:
Consider your venue
I’ve been to lots of different venues over the years, and some are definitely better than others. Remember that you don’t just want to think about your exhibiting/performing space; you also want accessible toilets, clear signage etc. Will the venue provide refreshments? If so, where will they be and what will be provided? It’s always worth asking your target audience what makes a good venue for them too.
Pay attention to detail
One of the best events I went to was one that had charging points in every room – and plenty of them! If you’ve potentially got five hundred people in a room at the same time, one charging point is not going to cover that, with the amount of tech people carry around these days you’ll need a lot more – a station in every corner ideally. This website has some great options for branded charging points, which can be fun. As well as this, look at the smaller details of your event – how is the seating laid out, and is there enough for everyone you’re hoping will come? Be prepared for overcrowded sessions with extra chairs at the back and other considerations to ensure people are well catered for
Stay in touch with your speakers and exhibitors
Speakers and exhibitors are typically booked months – if not years – in advance. Which is great as these are the main attractions to your event. That said, it’s important to stay in touch with these people and ensure they remember they are attending. Be helpful – ask if there’s anything you can do to help them to prepare. Provide clear directions for finding the venue, and any information they’ll need if they need to find a specific entrance or space once they arrive. If your speakers have a good experience they’re more likely to hang around after their session to speak to attendees – and to come back to your next event. But most importantly – never assume that because they confirmed six months ago, they’ll actually remember to turn up on the day! Staying in regular contact makes no-shows less likely.
Be aware that people may not want to attend in person
The pandemic is still very much a thing in people’s minds right now, and rules and guidelines seem to be changing regularly. You may find that people are nervous about travelling or attending an event. A great way around this is to offer discounted tickets for people to stream the experience from home. Great event management is flexible and makes attendees feel valued, and you need to consider people’s needs and fears.
Check the wifi!
This one is so simple but I’ve been to a surprisingly large number of events where there was little to no phone signal, and the wifi quickly became overwhelmed by the number of people trying to log on at once. Double check with your venue that it can cope with a large number of users at one time, and ask if they have a contingency for large usage. Another important point here is that if you have an app for your event, make sure it allows offline access to the event agenda – or remind your attendees to download a copy before leaving home!
Goodie bags can make a real difference to how people view your event. Of course, you’ll have all the usual promotional material from your exhibitors – and you know that a lot of those leaflets will find their way to a recycling bin fairly quickly Give your attendees something to really wow them and make them feel valued too. Branded products can be a good idea – but at this point nobody needs another cheap, branded ballpoint pen! Think about what your attendees would find genuinely useful. Disposable cameras can be a nice touch for people looking to record their experience, and it shows you’ve thought about what happens if tech fails, chargers don’t work, wifi goes down or people leave their camera at home! Click here to read about how branded disposable cameras could transform your goodie bag!