Starting to Sell Your Event
Whether you are new to planning your own event, or an experienced event organizer or promoter there are several questions that must be answered before you begin to sell your event. Sometimes you may have a vision and you think you are ready to go, but until you have the answer to these questions, you could be setting up yourself for failure. So, let’s look at ten basic questions that must be answered for all types of events, big or small, corporate or entertainment.
Now that you know the size of the event you are planning, you must narrow down your audience. Who are the people that you see attending your event? What are their ages, their interests, their financial status, where do they live, and so on? The answers to these questions will now steer you to developing a very good feel of who your audience is and once you know this you will have a better idea of how you will be able to get them to attend your event.
You need to make sure that you know how you can communicate with this target audience that you now have. How do they consume information? Do they depend on the traditional media? Do they get their news from the Internet and if so, which platforms would they most likely be found on? Do you have a database of their contacts and can reach them by email? Do you know people who will influence them to come to the event? You will need to ensure that you have this information so that you will be able to get the target audiences attention in the most efficient and economical way.
Your date consideration is very important and you need to do your research to make sure that the date that you are selecting satisfies several factors. Is the date convenient for your target audience, will they have the time to attend your event? Are there competing events that may be targeting the same audience as you? What is the likely weather during that time of year and are there any factors that might affect your event negatively? While you will not be able to fully control or eliminate some of the possible challenges that might exist here, you need to have enough information so that you can make the best decision that will give you the least risk.
Your date is set you can start vetting possible venues. Based on the time of year, should you have an indoor or outdoor venue? Is there a strong possibility of rain and if so, what is your rain plan? If it’s a day event and you are having it outdoors, will it be too hot and if so, what other solutions would you need to put in place? Does the location require a lot of travel time for your audience and if so, have you set the start and end time to be convenient?
What are the activities that you will offer at your event? Do you have the right speakers or entertainers to keep the attention of your proposed attendees? Do you know how to contact them and book them? Do you know the cost of these activities? How will you obtain the necessary equipment, and infrastructure to be able to present the activities that you plan to offer? This brings us to the next question.
Who will manage the execution of your event? Are you able to manage it yourself or will you have to hire an event planning/production team? Who are your options? What are their costs? When do you need to bring them into the project?
You now have much of the information to actually set up and execute the event, but how are you going to get your audience aware of the event and encourage them to actually attend. You had already found out much about them and now you need the correct strategies to get them hooked. You may feel that you are able to do this promotion yourself but it may be better to engage a marketing professional who can put together a strategic plan to reach and convert your audience into attendees. Who are your options? What are the costs? When do you need to start promoting?
Having identified, the venue, the production needs, the activities to be presented, the promotional plan, you are now in a position to come up with your overall event budget. It is very critical that you know what the event will cost and that answers half of the budget question. Once you have this information you will be better able to come up with a revenue plan as without this your event will not get off the ground.
Rear view of Audience listening Speakers on the stage in the conference hall or seminar meeting, business and education about investment concept[/caption]
Is the event for profit, if so how much profit are you forecasting? Is it for charity, and if so how much do you want to raise for the charity? Even if the event is not to make a profit or to raise funds in any way, you still have to know where the funds will come from to pay for it. It may be a company event and the company will take care of the expenses, however, you would still need to know this and so present your budget to the relevant individuals. You may be looking at covering the costs with sponsorship and if so now that you have your budget you know how much sponsorship you have to achieve. If its for profit or charity, you will then know how to calculate your pricing so that based on your attendance forecast, you should be able to cover your costs and make a profit. Pricing will be very important at this point as you will need to make sure that your potential attendees are able to afford and be willing to pay your prices.
Now you have your expense and revenue budget done and you feel comfortable that you are able to pay for your event and achieve your revenue goals, but you need to get the tickets sold, or registrations done. Will you be doing online sales? Will you have box offices? Will you be selling tickets at the gate? What will be the fees that will have to pay in order to make these sales? These are very important questions and must be answered as without effective management of your ticket sales and registrations, your event will not be successful.
You have set your target revenue for your event based on your expected earnings, or your attendance goals if this is not a revenue making event, and now you need to make sure you will achieve the targets that you have set. This means that you will need to consistently monitor your sales or registrations to make sure you are on target and if not you will be able to make adjustments to get yourself back on track. On the day of the event you will also need to manage your access to ensure that only eligible patrons are let in. After the event you will also need to see how your attendance matches up to your sales.
As you can see there are many questions to answer in order to host a successful event and these are just a few of the most important ones. Successful event management takes hard work with detailed and proper planning and sometimes its best to bring in the professionals. Touchstone Productions and Touchstone Link can provide all these services and more to take the burden off your shoulders, giving you more time to be creative and start thinking about your next event.
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