There’s no doubt that planning your first ever event is a time consuming and potentially stressful experience. But it’s also very rewarding.
If you’re hosting your first ever event, you’re probably wondering how you should go about planning it. We’re here to help, below is our guide on how to plan an event.
Develop a vision for your event
The first step to organising your event is to develop a vision of what you’d like to see go into and come out of your event. In order to do this, you need to ask yourself what the ultimate goal is for your event, are you hoping to raise money for a cause? Launch a product? Or maybe you’re aiming to increase brand awareness?
Secondly, you need to have an idea as to how many attendees you’re hoping to attract. By researching attendee data for similar events hosted within the past few years, you can get a good idea as to how many people you can expect at your event.
Finally, you need to have an idea of how much revenue you’re hoping to collect from the event. This will help you to establish what your budget is.
Put your team together
Once you have built your event vision, it’s time to start assembling a team that will help to make your vision possible. As the event organiser, it’s your responsibility for filling the various roles you need for your event, including those that require specific technical skills.
Here at Winter Gardens, we can help you plan your staffing needs at your event. We work closely with approved vendors, as well as our internal teams, to provide any level of staffing required for events.
Set an event budget
The next step in organising your event is to set a budget. Finances are undoubtedly one of the most important aspects of an event, therefore you need to set a sensible budget that enables you to carry out your event successfully.
There are a number of costs involved with hosting an event which needs to be included in your budget. Your event venue is likely to be one of the biggest costs, along with any equipment you may need. Catering costs, entertainment bookings and the costs involved in marketing also need to be included.
Choose your venue and date
Now that your budget is set, it’s time to choose a venue for your event. With a range of venue options available, there are a number of things to consider to make sure that you choose a venue that is suited to your event.
Firstly, you need to think about how your attendees will get to your event. Is the event venue located near a train station? Within easy access to a motorway? Near an airport? Does the venue meet your requirements in terms of car parking? All of these aspects should be considered when choosing your event venue. Secondly, you need to choose a venue that can fit your requirements in terms of size. By having an idea as to how many attendees you’re expecting, you’ll be able to choose a suitable venue.
Once you’ve decided where you’re hosting your event, all that’s left is to check that the venue is available on your chosen date.
Develop and deploy your event marketing campaign
Now that your basic mechanisms are in place for your event, it’s time to start raising awareness by implementing your marketing campaign.
There are a number of ways to market your event to potential attendees, and each one appeals to specific generations. By knowing the demographics of your event attendees, you’ll be able to market to them more effectively.
Here at Winter Gardens, our internal team are well versed in event marketing and can help to maximise interest on both a national and local scale. We have a number of marketing channels at our disposal that we can utilise to promote your event. You can find out more about this service here.
Determine your tech needs
Technology is necessary to facilitate a successful event, it’s important to figure out which ones you need for your event. For example, you may need registration software to handle attendee signups, or specific audio and visual equipment such as microphones and speakers. If you don’t already have this equipment, check with the venue as they may have equipment available that you can use.
With everything in place for your event, there are a few final preparations to make before the day of the event.
It’s a good idea to call participating vendors to double check on equipment, catering and sponsors. Check in with the venue owners or managers to confirm the date and time of the event and test all of your equipment as it arrives to make sure it’s all working properly.
After the event is over it’s a good idea to evaluate its performance, especially if you plan on hosting similar events in the future. Look at how many people attended your event, how much revenue you generated and social engagement numbers. By looking into this data you can compare your results with your goals and log the results for future reference.
Outside of your internal data, it’s a good idea to finish off your event with a post-event survey. This will give you the external information you need to see where your event excelled and what areas you can improve on in the future.
When it comes to planning events at Winter Gardens, our team have a vast amount of experience and knowledge. We offer a range of services which can help with everything from catering, accommodation booking and staffing, right through to logistics and marketing support. Talk to a member of the team today and find out how we can help to enhance your event and shoulder some of the pressure that comes along with organising any event.