We’ve put together our top 10 essential event planning tips for you to think about when planning your upcoming special event. While some of these may seem basic to the experienced event planner, we can agree that they are absolutely necessary to produce a successful and profitable special event. Don’t have the time to plan your own event? Skip this article and speak directly with an event pro who can save you time, money, and stress.
Jump Start Your Event
- To make your event as successful as possible, get an early start. It’s never too early to start planning. Most large events begin planning 9-12 months while smaller events with 50 or fewer attendees starting 6-8 months in advance. We start planning community festivals and large seasonal attractions 9-16 months in advance.
Form An Event Committee
- Don’t try to do everything yourself. While smaller events can be handled by individuals, we recommend forming a committee to handle certain aspects of the event such as marketing, logistics, sponsorship, volunteer coordination, etc.
Use Shared Documents
- Use an online document sharing service such as Google Docs or Onehub. Create and store your event timeline here so everyone helping with the event has updated access from anywhere. This is also a great option for collaborating with Google Docs having a comment section. We highly recommend using Monday.com for all of your project management needs.
Add A Contingency To Your Budget
- When forming your event budget, add in an expense contingency. Changes will occur and unanticipated expenses will come up. This way, you don’t have to cut other parts of your budget down.
Don’t Skip Branding
- Make your event stand out. Create an overall theme for your event. Make sure your social media, invitations, email blasts, and any other content you produce match it. If you don’t have time to make your content, hire a graphic designer if you have the budget available. You can create free event graphics and logos online at www.Canva.com. Don’t forget an event tagline!
Keep In Touch
- Don’t make your guests ask questions. Schedule attendee emails through your ticketing platform such as www.Ticketleap.com or use www.MailChimp.com to create free email blasts. Tell your guests everything they need to know and keep them up to date as the event draws near or if plans change. This will limit negative backlash online and it’ll reduce the number of emails coming through your inbox so you can keep planning!
Triple Check Your Event Planning Checklist
- Create your master’s to-do list on a shared document site as we suggested above. Make a column stating who’s in charge of each task, the completion date, and the category. Check your list a minimum of once or twice a week and triple check it 48 hours before your event starting to make sure you have all of your bases covered and check in with the task owners to make sure everything is on track.
Photograph Everything–Hire a Professional Photographer
- When we say photograph everything, we mean everything! Sometimes it helps to even hire two photographers with different styles. You can use images to help promote future events, promote vendors/partners and you can share images of guests for them to share themselves on social media which increases your event exposure. Photographs also help build event credibility!
- Don’t try to do everything yourself. Work with your vendors and get their ideas and suggestions. Have vendors such as A/V, lighting, and rental companies join you on-site visits so everyone has a clear picture of the event and what needs to happen.
Make it Green!
- Treadway Events produces a variety of attractions and events that use repurposed materials. Incorporate recycling programs and make sure guests take part. This will help your event stand out even more in the communities your serving and your sponsors will LOVE it.