Months of prepping and planning, weeks of negotiating and promoting and hours of stressing over the smallest minute details all for a single event. As an event planner it is your responsibility to create and plan an event that has been very meticulously thought-out so guests can enjoy themselves blissfully unaware of the countless days of hard work and blood, sweat and tears that were put in to planning the event. Sounds easy right? Well I’m here to tell you that event planning doesn’t always have to be as stressful as you might think.
CEO of Nasty Gal Sophia Amoruso said, “There are secret opportunities hidden inside every failure.” Well ladies and gentlemen I hope you take advantage of these past event planning problems to find endless opportunity for the future of your events. Below are popular issues that I’ve encountered in my events experience accompanied by solutions and strategies that will help you overcome event obstacles.
Choosing the Right Venue
Know your audience. You’ve heard this before and I’m certain you’ll hear it again. Knowing your audience is essential to picking the right venue for an event. Sure, it’s great to have a huge venue where hundreds can attend the event, but is it always fitting to have a full-house? Some events require a smaller setting to ensure exclusivity. Have an idea of the approximate number of guests you think will make for an efficient event. Whatever you do, do not forget to book the venue in advance! Venues get booked months ahead of time. Book it as soon as possible.
Drafting a Dream Team
I’m almost positive that if you are planning events for a living then you have a Type-A personality. Us Type-A’s often want to try to do everything ourselves to ensure that it is done exactly right. Trying to plan an event alone is impossible and more stressful than it needs to be. Working with a group towards a shared goal can be an amazing experience for everyone involved. Lucky for me, I have the number one dream team of Trio girls that are always willing to help!
Promoting the Event
When it comes to promoting an event, take full advantage of social media. It can reach thousands in minutes. Get your followers to participate in social media before, during and after the event by posting comments, taking pictures and sharing the event with friends. Blogs, email blasts and online invitations are great ways to utilize free promotion. Classic mail-in invitations can be more expensive, but aren still effective.
Prepare for the worst and hope for the best. You never know what can go wrong when it comes to the day or night of the event. Have a back-up plan. Have a back-up plan for the back-up plan. Tiny problems can have a huge impact on the entire event. Bring an “event first-aid kit” stocked with things you might need. You would be surprised how far a roll of tape, scissors and extra ribbon could take you in a time of desperate need. Something will go wrong on the day of the event. It’s almost inevitable. If you are prepared for this with back-up plans then overcoming the problem(s) will be significantly less stressful.
Budgeting and Funding
Be realistic. Set a budget before plans are set in stone. Know how to gain new resources and sponsors as well as how to utilize the resources and sponsors you already have. Put those PR skills to work and inform companies of the publicity that a sponsorship could give them. It’s amazing how much people are willing to donate to help make an event successful, especially when the event is for a good cause.
The most successful event is the one that achieves your goals and exceeds your expectations. Reach high and don’t be afraid to take risks. Do your homework and learn from mistakes. If you do this, you’ll be sure to have a successful event. Happy event planning!