Event management refers to the planning of an occasion, festival, convention, ceremony. The planning may include reserving a spot at the event venue, choosing the venue, budgeting and setting dates. The plan also includes securing permits, parking, coordination of transportation, décor arrangement, security, etc.
Definition and Purpose
Aside from those mentioned above, event planning also includes emergency plans, catering, event support and cleanup. The industry today includes events of all sizes ranging from a business meeting between ten people to the Olympics. In terms of purpose, the event could be for raising charity, awareness for a cause, celebrate a milestone or anniversary, or marketing.
Event management is considered one of the most effective marketing tools today, and it’s used by many companies for this purpose. Event planning is used for launching products, press conferences and promoting services, and depending on the event, music and other forms of entertainment may be used.
The Responsibilities of the Event Manager
According to professional AD Event management company, the event manager is the person responsible for overseeing the event and ensuring everything goes according to plan. It is the manager’s responsibility to make certain the logistical, technical and creative elements all fall into place. Managers also handle client service, negotiation, budgeting and logistics.
In addition, the event manager needs to make sure the audio visual production, strategy, marketing and brand building go according to plan. Managers usually have assistants, but he is the one who needs to make the final call on critical decisions.
The Event Checklist
The following is a generic checklist so you can get an idea of how event planning works. Note that this is just a general guide and the specifics can vary from event to event so you should add or remove items depending on your needs.
- Set the event objectives
- Choose the date
- Select a venue
- Create the event master plan
- Estimate the cost and create a budget
- Hire an event manager and establish an event committee
- Promote the event
- Confirm the speakers / entertainers
- Confirm the sponsors and partners
Steps for Planning for an Event
Event planning can be a complex undertaking, but if you take the right steps everything should proceed smoothly. The following is a general overview but should give you an idea of what to do.
- Define the Objectives
Why are you holding this event? What is the purpose, and what do you want to achieve?
- Organize the Team
Once the objectives have been set, it’s time to put together a team to manage the details. At this point you may want to consider an event manager or chairperson to lead the committee. You can also set up sub-committees to handle the sponsors, publicity, entertainment, speakers and so on.
- Set the Date
If the date has already been set, good, but if not, give yourself at least four months to prepare for it. Make sure that it doesn’t conflict with the holidays or the schedule of your VIP guests, speakers, etc.
- Branding the Event
Branding is necessary for the occasion to stand out from the rest, so you must choose a theme for the event. The event needs to have a catchy name or title, and there must be tagline that people will associate with the occasion. Depending on the event you might also want to create a logo to help with the branding.
- Plan the Event
The planning stage should encompass the elements mentioned earlier like logistics, permits, insurance, scheduling, catering, entertainment, etc. Planning should also include promotion, publicity online and offline and the other items included in the event checklist given earlier.
- The Administrative Process
The administrative process is that part of the planning where you keep track of the budget, the special guest list, registration and other particulars. If you hired an event planner they’ll be able to help you manage the event and monitor the budget and other processes.
- Sponsors and Partnerships
Do you have sponsors or partners who will shoulder the expenses or otherwise participate in the event? And if you don’t have a sponsor, it’s a good idea to seek a few and have them offer a prize, sponsor dinner, or provide other goods and services like decors for the venue, flowers for the tables, etc.
If you want the event to get noticed, publicity is necessary. If you have sponsors and partners, they can definitely help in this regard. There’s also social media which can spread word about the occasion quickly. But you must not just rely on online promotion as a combination of offline and online publicity works best.
- Set the Budget
This has been mentioned earlier but it is worth stressing because it is very important. Your budget must include all the items in the master plan. It must also take into account all the items in your event checklist.
- Determine the Assessment Process
The evaluation / assessment process refers to the method you will use to determine if the event was successful. For some companies it is the number of people who registered, while for others it is the number of people who attend the occasion.
In other cases, success depends on the money raised or by another yardstick. Before you even consider holding an event, a means for determining success or failure must be established.
Measuring the success or failure of the event depends entirely on the purpose. If your basis is the number of attendees or registrants, it’s easy to track. But if the occasion involves tracking something else, put the proper process in place. If the objective is to raise awareness about something, benchmark and data gathering tools will be necessary as the results may not be apparent immediately and may take weeks or months to verify.
Planning for a special occasion can be time consuming and stressful, which is why event management is very important. Fortunately there are several companies and even software that can help you with the preparation. The important thing is to make sure you give yourself or the event planning team time to prepare for it.