Photo of back of crowd at a music concert

10-Step Blueprint to Planning Your Event

1. Get a clear understanding of the purpose of the event marketing promotion. An organizational event needs to be clearly defined, in order to focus all efforts towards the desired goal. It’s important to know the significance behind the event and the anticipated outcome. For example, is it meant to create awareness, induce trial or promote sales? Analyze the actual results of the event marketing activity against these objectives.

2. Set the key deliverables for your event. How many people do you expect? What do you wish attendees to gain from the event? If it’s a regular event, are you trying to get a larger turnout than last year? The answers will help you plan things better.

3. Set your event budget. This should be a top priority. Set a strict working budget, plus have some extra money put aside in case something unexpected comes up. Keep in mind how much you are willing to spend and potential revenue-generating factors, like a registration fee.

4. Select the date and location of the event. Always keep options open and visit a couple of sites before you make a decision. This will help you plan the entire event depending on the availability of the room and other facilities such as parking, lighting, computer and internet access, etc.

5. Set up a project timeline and work backward from the date of your event marketing program. Decide deadlines for each activity, such as the first announcement of the event, preparation of promotional materials, finalization of seating arrangements, recruitment of vendors for food, entertainment, decorations… and the list goes on…….

6. Some events need special permission or licenses to host them. This could be for anything, such as permission to use recorded music, providing security or maintaining traffic control. All this should be done very much in advance, without pushing it till the last moment.

7. If you are publicizing the event then what is the medium of reaching the targeted audience? This might include distribution of pamphlets, pre-printed invitations, mail, announcements or any other media.

8. Plan for emergencies. Write down all the fire exits, and have an evacuation plan on paper ready, in case of emergency. Accidents rarely warn in advance; hence hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.

It’s important to prepare a checklist and follow up with vendors at regular intervals. Take time and jot down all the important points and make sure you don’t compromise on the quality in order to hack down your budget.

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