Event Planning Guide

Do you want your event to be a memorable occasion? Event planning will determine the outcome and the impressions your event has on those attending it.

Whether designing a social or special event, business or educational event (such as a block party or historic reenactment, award banquet, or college function), you cannot create your marketing material or begin your promotional efforts until you have decided on a suitable venue.

Similarly, you cannot invite a keynote speaker or book entertainment until your event goals and objectives have been clearly defined.

Eliminating guesswork and being resourceful is an underlying common thread that runs throughout the entire event planning process. The more you research what you have to work with, the easier it is to adjust and put it all together. Creating lists for the various steps and processes is a good way to accomplish this.

Event Planning Tools

A checklist is an events planning tool that is a mainstay of the industry. Write items down on your checklist and the chances of execution increase radically. Use them to assist you in keeping progress flowing in a positive direction.

Whether time-sensitive objectives, such as procuring venues or speakers while they're available, or non-time sensitive items, such as event supplies and equipment, it's important to constantly update and revise your lists to suit your needs.

Some general headings to use for check lists may be: "Tasks", "Notes", "Due Dates", "Activity/Item", "Estimate Cost", "Actual Cost", "Item/Question", "Done/Complete," etc.

Event Budgeting

A budget is a written plan of operations based on an estimate, often itemized, of expected income and expense for a given period. This document is an indispensable tool to help you supervise, track, and verify what you are doing at all times, so be sure to update it often.

An accurate budget is your resource for critical decision making. Identify income arrival and revenues so you know how and when to spend it. You may want to budget for things like recognition awards that will presented during your event, or some other expense unique to your event. There are usually four sources of money: Reserves, sponsorship, participants, your own, or a combination hereof.

Examine costs as they arise with your estimated costs and compare and prioritize them to achieve your intended objective.

Event Venues

So, where should you hold your event?

Keep in mind: what may be an impressive location may not be any more expensive then your standard hotel, excluding, of course, those uniquely exotic places. Don't limit your imagination, be inquisitive. Try to facilitate a synergy between the venue, event theme, and attendee profile.

Event Design

Whether your event is corporate, social, or festive, design is what inspires the participants in the direction of your objective. For example, pizza, clowns and balloons clearly do not inspire a productive business meeting in place of a sunny, freshened room with large conference table, cold water bottles, pens and pads neatly in place.

If impressing high-profile attendees is your objective, you may consider hiring a company with a reputation for lasting impressions.

Event Supplies

Event supplies, generally speaking, are disposable or long term use items that are bought or rented to satisfy the particular need of a place and/or time within an event.

Some such items are portable toilets, audio visual equipment, table linens, chairs and tables, tents, office equipment and supplies, catering equipment and supplies, candles, flowers, etc.

Most events involve handing out some custom printed items, like cups, bags or apparel with a logo printed or embroidered on it.

Finding the quality level of supplies that fits your budget and vision is the goal.

Event Catering

Some components of event planning and management are an entire production in their own right, and catering is one of them. If catering is required for your type of event, it could determine your failure or success.

Take caution in understanding how important a role food will play. So, for an evening sports event or festival, fast foods, snacks and cold beverages are appropriate whereas at a congressional dinner that could be insulting.

Event Registration

Since event registration is such an automatable task, there are many turnkey companies to choose from that charge from as little as $4.00 per attendee. When using a third party vendor for registration, check references and make sure, contractually, data is secure - that you own it and nothing may be shared without permission.

Methods for protecting personal information are paramount when planning your event such as Secure Socket Layer encryption, paper shredders, etc.

If you're having something small and simple, then perhaps just signing in will do. Using the proper judgment will certainly influence your budget.

Event Lighting

Size and location is definitely a factor when creating lighting plans. Lighting sets the tone and feeling for many attendees.

Use pinspots for effectively highlighting tables, details, centerpieces, etc. Use up-lights for backgrounds, murals, walls, etc. And use holiday lighting applied to landscaping and structures. Make sure that targets are highlighted and not washed out. Colored lights next to white spot lights can make a dramatic ffect.

If you take all of these pieces of the event planning puzzle individually, and plan them out accordingly, you will be sure to cover all of the important details when planning your event.

More by this Author

  • Event Ideas

    The following event ideas and event themes may help bring things into focus when planning your next event. Almost any activity can be made into an event if you organize it correctly. Walkathons, for example, are one...

Comments 1 comment

mark irabor 7 years ago

Another very important fictures in organizing meetings, conferences and seminars is the issue of Public Address System [PAS]. The type and capacity of Equipment to use depends on the number of participants expected at the Event. Example: The PAS used for conference/seminar might be different from the PAS used in Crusade etc



    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.

    Click to Rate This Article