Before we dive into the comprehensive guide of event planning and management, we want to make it clear that we’d love to talk to you! Every event organizer is a potential partner of ours and as such can benefit through LayAlt’s Affiliate Program, so drop us a line and we’ll tell you more!
So, who are these very people here that claim they can guide you through the intricate matter of (in-person) event management? Well, the team behind LayAlt is the same group of professionals behind a marketing agency called Press Start. In the past 5 years we’ve organized hundreds of hi-tech, gaming, and art events, which is a key reason for LayAlt’s technology to be applied to venues and the event industry first – we simply know the business.
Note: Throughout the Guide you’ll notice we use the term “initiator” separately from the terms “organizer, planner, manager”. This is because a company or a person may initiate or request an event, but oftentimes they’re not organizing and managing it themselves. They are outsourcing / delegating it to a specific person, department, or outside contractor.
The starting step in organizing an event is, of course, coming up with and clearing out the concept. There are different approaches, depending on the purpose. In this sense, events can be intended to:
- Attract new business customers
- Attract new end consumers (mass audience)
- Serve as positive PR
- Enhance employer branding
- Generate sales
- Support a charity
- Raise awareness
- Celebrate a personal occasion
Now, much can be said about each of the listed, but we’ll go with a generalized approach, so that the largest number of readers can benefit from the information.
Most often, you’d be organizing an event, requested or initiated by somebody else – a company or a close person, for example. You have to communicate with them the purpose of the desired event very, very clearly. Explain that this is key to the rest of the process: attracting the right crowd, businesses, or attention, as well as choosing a suitable venue – both in terms of size and atmosphere. To again illustrate through examples: using gaming YouTubers for popularization of an e-sports tournament is great, but putting part of the budget in this way when the event is an exclusive high life auction would be a waste. Same goes for the venue – a treasure hunt, initiated by a telecom, would fit perfectly at the park or the local mall, but a business cocktail is much better suited at a hotel conference room (like the great halls that our partners Grand Hotel Sofia and Grand Hotel Millennium offer).
And in case the initiator is the venue themselves – which is the case with most shopping malls or new store locations – you should define the purpose both in terms of goal (reputation, positioning, attendance, etc.) as well as desired number of attendees. If an initiator tells you something along the lines of ‘the more – the better’, don’t leave things there. Too many people is also not good at all. It’s a potential health and fire hazard and at the very least you should be aware of the fire department’s regulations regarding the specific location. If TOO many people attend, best case scenario they’ll have poor experience. This is why you should always insist on getting a range for the desired number of attendees.
One last thing on the topic: the purpose defines many of the steps that follow and if they’re necessary at all. If the event is a team building, no popularization will be required, while in the case of a big convention you should use all the marketing power you can have. And beyond. A word of caution though: if you’re not an experienced event organized, DON’T attempt to organize or manage a convention or a huge conference. The number of moving pieces there and the contacts required will quickly overwhelm you and the most probably result is an absolute disaster.
So, now that we have the purpose cleared out, the next steps await. Here is what we’re going to cover in the following blog posts of the series:
Let us know if this has been useful so far and if you’d like a similar series on conducting online or hybrid events. Also, make sure you follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn, so that you don’t miss the next parts!