When it comes to planning an event launch, few things are as important as preparation, which can cause a great deal of stress for you and your company if not carried out properly. The process of organising every minute detail, and ensuring that everything is carried out the way you intended, can seem overwhelming. By following and paying attention to a few simple guidelines, your event is sure to go off without a hitch.
Tone is more important than you think
Be sure to demonstrate the intended tone throughout the entirety of your event. This may seem obvious, but with the amount of stress that can build during the planning of an event launch, it is easy to forget the most basic of things. It is vital that you ensure the reason for the event is obvious throughout the evening, otherwise the purpose of the event itself can get lost, and guests may forget why they are there, what is more, it is important to make sure the purpose of the event is direct and concise, otherwise you run the risk of your guests becoming bored and distracted, and forgetting why they chose to attend in the first place.
When it comes to planning the event itself, procrastinating, and believing you have all the time in the world to pull the event together, can lead to you leaving everything to the last minute. This is one of the worst things you could possibly do. So many things can go wrong, and you can bet that the longer you leave it to plan the event, the more difficulties you will face. Be sure you allow yourself enough time to plan for any eventuality, and you are sure to minimise stress and prohibit the amount of things that could go wrong without you having time to fix them. Give yourself enough time to secure a suitable venue, and the caterer within your budget. After all, when you plan things last minute you end up panic buying and spending more time and money than you would have if you had set aside appropriate time. Your event deserves that unique London venue you had your heart set on.
No matter how hard you may try, there is absolutely no way of planning an event launch by yourself, no matter what the size, or how much time you give yourself to plan. This is where your team are so important. They will know the purpose of the event as well as you do, so don’t feel shy about delegating tasks to various members of staff. Everyone has their own strengths, so allow employees to play to them instead of trying to organise everything by yourself.
Location, location, location
As a means of demonstrating the intended tone of your event, it is vitally important to ensure the location of your event works in harmony with your product. Don’t be tempted to choose the first venue that you see, look around and investigate prices, size and what the venue can supply you with. What’s more, you want to ensure your location is easy to find. There is absolutely no point in organising your event if everyone turns up late because they ended up getting lost, or worse, giving up the search and not turning up at all. Make things easy for your guests, and keep the location central to your local area or in somewhere central to everyone, like a meeting venue in central London. This way, you’ll give yourself a far better chance of filling your venue. It doesn’t matter how far ahead you plan, if hardly anyone turns up, the event will be completely useless.
Make sure everyone knows what they’re doing on the night
Similar to delegation, it is important to know that when the time comes, each and every member of your team will know what they are supposed to be doing. Need someone on the door? Assign that position ahead of time. Need someone to show people to their seat? Make sure that person knows the seating plan and, if possible, where certain guests are meant to be sitting. It may take a long time to organise, but it’ll be worth it in the long run when you don’t have members of staff running around like headless chickens having no idea what they are meant to be doing. Your event has a far better chance of running smoothly without your staff running to you every five minutes to ask you what you need them to do.
Have contingency plans
Nobody wants their event launch to go wrong but, sadly, sometimes things happen that are out of your control. While you can’t ensure that your caterer won’t pull out at the last minute, or one of your team will come down with the flu and not be able to work on the night, there are a few things you can plan for. Having an event outside? Prevent the weather from ruining your event by putting up canopies. Not 100% sure how many people will attend due to unanswered RSVPs, have a stash of back up chairs ready so nobody is left standing. It might seem like you are planning for the worst, but you’ll thank yourself later when the weather turns and or your keynote speaker is stuck in traffic.
Work out finances ahead of time
When it comes to planning your event, make sure organising your finances is close to the top of that list. Every event costs money, and you are going to want to make sure you don’t run out of funds three weeks before the event. Sort out a budget way ahead of time, and try your best to stick to it. And, as things don’t always work out the way you want them too, it wouldn’t hurt to include a backup fund to keep you from ending up out of pocket. Sometimes the little details can get lost, but this is one you don’t want to forget.
Event launches can be daunting, especially when it comes to organising the little details. Just make sure your staff know exactly what they are supposed to be doing, and that you begin planning well in advance, and there is no reason your event launch won’t run as smoothly as you want it to.
By Rebecca D’Souza, freelance writer for Fountain Partnership