Did you know that the business conference industry in the United States generates $330 billion each year?
Successfully planning and going through with a stellar business conference is one way to ensure that you are not a loser in the booming industry.
Ever been to a poorly planned conference? The attendance is usually minimal, the organization needs some help, and everything is just generally a mess. Chances are none of the attendees would go to another conference by the same host.
Planning a business conference is not easy, but with a couple of tricks, you should be able to hack it.
Want to leave an impression? Check out these amazing event planning tips that will knock your attendees’ socks off.
1. Have a Vision for Your Conference
Have a clear picture of how the event will turn out to be. This will help you make informed decisions.
It helps to have a clear purpose for the conference. What are you trying to achieve? Promote a new product? Launch a new service?
Write down the details of the event. How many people will be in attendance? Where will the venue be? Who will be the key speakers?
2. Create and Stick to a Budget
We all know how daunting creating a budget for a huge event can be. But if your conference is going to be a success, creating a budget is a great event planning tip.
Figure out where the funding for the conference will come from. If you are lucky, a foundation, grant, or organization will meet all the costs. But if not, start calculating.
Have some extra money aside. All sorts of things can come up, and an emergency fund could come in handy.
3. Settle on a Great Venue
Choosing the perfect venue is one of the best event planning tips for a great conference.
In most cases, the venue you settle for will also determine your catering, audio, and visual costs. Rather than settle for the first site you like, shop around for better deals to ensure your total costs are not through the roof.
Your conference will likely run for more than a day. In this case, your guests will need accommodation. Choosing a venue that offers accommodation as well could help you cut down on accommodation and transportation costs.
4. Get Into the Finer Details of the Contracts
Knowing all the crucial details in the early stages of planning will save you a lot of trouble.
Before binding yourself to a contract, make sure that you read all the paperwork. Identify any possible loopholes and ensure that you are both clear on all the minute details of the contract.
The last thing you want is a partner pulling out at the last minute. So, even if it is tedious, be sure to go through everything.
5. Reduce Last Minute Changes
When planning a business conference, last-minute changes can really mess you up.
Seeing as there are a number of parties involved, it’s important that everyone is clear on what’s expected of them.
Having some strict rules may become necessary. Ensure that every party is aware of the last possible date to make any changes or to back out. Impose some penalties if need be and include them in the contract.
6. Market Your Conference Aggressively
Even with all the plans in place, attendance is a key factor in the success of your business conference.
Marketing your conference will help boost attendance. One of the best tips for marketing your business conference would be to use social media.
Have accounts across different social media platforms and use these to get people talking. With an effective tool, you can schedule your posts in advance across all platforms.
The key is to get engaged with your target market. Get them talking and asking questions as well as sharing details of the conference.
7. Automate Everything That You Can
One thing that makes technology so beautiful is that it helps make everything easier.
Good news is that you don’t have to keep calling for meetings just to communicate with the entire team. There are so many apps that can help you with this.
By automating all these tasks, you get to save on time and communicate all the meeting details instantly.
8. Have Contingency Plans in Place
Unfortunately, no matter how detailed your planning is, you can’t eliminate all the chances of something going haywire by having contingency plans in place.
Once you have the venue chosen and the initial plan all worked out into details, identify the most likely things to happen.
Has the weather been unfavorable lately? What is there is a sudden calamity? Have all these factors and their possible solutions in mind.
9. Exhibition Management
Sponsors and other vendors will want to rent out some space during the conference so that they can showcase their products.
With a bit of organization, this could end up being a huge profit to you.
Exhibition management requires a lot of time and resources. The more vendors, the more tedious it gets.
Be sure that you will be able to handle it before you decide to include an exhibition during your conference.
10. Get Some Feedback
When everything is done, you really aren’t the judge of your own work.
It helps to know how your attendees felt about the conference in general. As such, you could have a questionnaire for them to fill out on the final day of the conference.
Alternatively, you could send them a survey via email. Either way, it’s best to have them give you feedback within the first day after the conference.
Most people don’t bother with this step, but it helps to identify the weak areas. This way, you can improve on them for the following year and have an even better conference.
Final Thoughts on Event Planning Tips for Your Conference
Planning a business conference can be hectic, especially if you are looking to impress all your guests. But the event planning tips above will help you with your conference.
Go ahead and employ these tips. Your guests will be left in awe of your great organizational skills. Not too bad for business, right?
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