If you are tasked with planning a corporate event for the festive season, or indeed any time of the year, there is much to think about. Not least is how to make the investment in the event pay off – in terms of engaging with your audience, raising your profile and creating a lasting impression.
Here’s five key components to any successful event to keep you focussed on success:
1. Venue is paramount – location, quality and cost are all important considerations for business planning a corporate event but reputation and delivery also have a very important role to play. Ask a professional events organiser to recommend venues that they know will deliver on the day as this will guarantee your event the best chance of success and reduce risks and of course stress levels for the organisers.
2. Catering is always important – whether you are hosting a breakfast event, a drinks reception with canapés or a full blown gala dinner, invest in the best food and drink you can afford. Great catering is a real talking point and guests will remember a fantastic meal – or even a top notch plate of quality bacon butties – long after the event is over. Also consider that they will also remember bad food for a lot longer – and are even more likely to talk about this!
3. If budgets are tight consider investing in one real ‘wow’ element which will leave your audience with something to remember. This can be the food, spectacular entertainment, a strong or moving corporate video which leaves a lasting impact or perhaps stunning goody bags to create a real feeling of goodwill among guests as they leave.
4. Good planning and communication is vital. Have a communications plan in place which clearly outlines your expectations and strategic objectives for the event, and share this with organisers, the venue and any employees ‘working’ the event.
Also consider external communications – make sure guests are clear on where and when the event is, any travel or parking arrangements, accommodation options, the event timetable, seating arrangements etc.
Extend your external communications plan further by making sure your marketing and PR team are fully informed and able to maximise any opportunities arising from the event.
5. Evaluation is an essential tool. Any investment should be evaluated against your original strategic objectives and the same can be said for events. So often businesses think that once the ‘party’ is over that’s it and they can sit back and relax before planning their next corporate event. But was it money really well spent? What did your organisers really think about the event and did you achieve your original objectives? What worked well and what was less successful. What did employees working the event think? What can you learn for future events? Spend time talking to organisers, the venue, guests, caterers, entertainers, employees, local or business media – indeed all stakeholders in an event to ensure maximum returns on any future investment and to help manage your corporate reputation.
Whether you are planning your events in-house, or using a professional events partner such as TLC, follow this advice and you wont go far wrong.