Whether you’re planning a corporate event in Dubai or a private celebration abroad, event planning can be a stressful job. Event planning is a rewarding experience when it’s over especially if everything turns out well. No matter if your event is a small, closed group one or a large scale high-turnout event, there are various aspects and verticals to keep in mind while planning them.
From budgeting to post-event, there are so many intricate details to manage. Getting a professional event management company to help you plan and execute is always a good idea, but it would depend on the budget you would have allocated towards the event. To help you plan events more effectively, here’s a checklist or as we’d like to call it the ultimate cheat sheet for events on things you need to take care of.
- Event Objective: Establish the objective of your event and the goals to be achieved. This should always be the starting point, depending on which you could work on activations, venue and guest list.
- Budget Allocation: Get an understanding of the budget and plan your event deliverables as well as spend estimates to be less than the allocated budget. Always keep room (20-25%) for unexpected expenses.
- Event Theme: Based on your understanding of the event objective, narrow down the themes to help get started with the planning. Ensure it has an all-audience appeal and does not offend any attendees.
- Venue and Menu: Determine if you’d like to do an outdoor or an indoor event. Have a contingency plan, in case the venue isn’t available for the determined or for weather mishaps. Based on your attendee’s preference, finalize the menu and attend a food tasting session with the event planners from the venue or caterers. Take an evaluation sheet and have more than one person score the food on various aspects like the table set up, taste, variety and so on.
- Set the (right) Date: To ensure all PR focus remains with your event, verify no competitor events are happening on the same date or in the same week.
- Event Planning, Organizing and Most Importantly the Checklist: It’s always important to have a checklist of the process and the items you’d like to arrange for the event. Confirm your guest list is based on the RSVP’s received (always leave room for a couple of plus one attendees), from pens to papers to giveaways at the event, everything should be in your checklist. All finer details matter, for example, accessibility of physically disabled. Prayer rooms for Muslim attendees, Halal food in your menu and so on.
- Assign Leaders: When you have too many things to look into, chances are that you may miss out on some of the finer details. Assign leaders for each of the main verticals, like venue and menu, could have a leader, guest RSVP, welcome and giveaways could have another leader, on-ground engagement and activation could have a leader too. It makes it easier for you to delegate responsibility and yet have it all under control.
- Social Media Coverage: While guests arrive or are waiting to be seated, a photobooth might be a good idea to have on ground engagement and have them promoted digitally. If you are planning to have on stage coverage, you could set up a Facebook live booth with noise cancellers. A team of two or three social media enthusiasts covering the event live for social media channels would help create awareness about the event and reach a wider audience.
- Post-Event Debrief: Always remember to take feedback and create a debrief document with positives and negatives of the event. It will only help you deliver a better event next time.
- Follow-Ups: It’s always great to have a thank you note sent across to the attendees and speakers for a corporate event along with the pictures taken during the event as a follow-up. Make sure you collect and share guest testimonials and keep your sponsors (if any) with the event highlights.
We hope this cheat sheet helps you deliver a great event and keeps your stress level down. If you’d like to leave a feedback or thoughts on the above tips and tricks, feel free to drop your comments below. We’d love to hear from you!