Planning an event requires time, money and commitment. You thought you had done everything in your power to ensure that it would be good, and yet the unexpected happened. The speakers did not grab the audience’s attention, the content didn’t seem to be relevant or there were simply too few attendees. What happened?
When a company holds an event it is usually outside of its normal course of business, which thus increases the risk of missing something in the important planning stage. Here are the five most common mistakes in event planning.
1. You underestimated the timing
A rule of thumb is that it takes approximately 3 months to plan an event, which unfortunately people often try to shorten. It takes time to arrange, plan, find good speakers, produce relevant content, etc., so reducing the time taken for planning also increases the risk that something will go wrong.
2. The event lacks a common thread
You need to have a common thread running through your event that follows a theme, an approach or a trade issue. The speakers and their content should therefore also be in line with this in order for you to give a professional impression, and to give the participants something relevant that they feel they benefit from.
3. The purpose and the goal is unclear
You need to be perfectly clear as to why you want to do this event and what your goal is with it. Do you want to make a name for yourself in the industry? Introduce new products or services, or just nurture your existing customer relationships?
4. The customer group doesn’t match
Before your event you need to consider which customer group you want to attract, and adapt your event on that basis. In general, the CEO and decision-makers come to an event to acquaint themselves with trends and forge business contacts, while middle managers, product managers and project leaders might prefer to log on to the internet to do those things. Who are you inviting, and why do they want to go to the event? Find out and then plan the event on the basis of this knowledge.
5. The “Do it all myself” attitude
You are biting off more than you can chew if you think that you can put together the event by yourself. Assemble a team with the right skills to succeed. Amongst others, you will need to include a leader, someone responsible for content, someone responsible for layout and design and someone to organise internet activity.