back to blog

13 Tips to Run a Successful Event

You’ve planned and planned and everything appears to be in place for a successful event. Guests start to arrive and issue after issue begins to arise. Believe it or not, many issues can be avoided with a little extra planning. event Pre-planning Tips Set goals from the start. Want to sell 100 tickets with 120 as a stretch? Decide that up front so you aren’t scrambling to confirm your space can accommodate the extra bodies at the last minute. Identify the goal first then work backwards to get there. Absorb the fees. When ticket sales are processed through a third party your company should absorb the fees so all your attendees see is one price. This is especially true for more expensive events when the fee per ticket would be larger. Seeing the larger fee is often a shock to attendees that can put them off registering. Plan for unexpected fees. There’s an unexpected blizzard the night before your event and you need to hire a plow and two people to shovel, are you prepared? Setting aside some reserve funds for incidentals can make your event run much smoother. Give attendees a place to meet before the event. Encourage attendees to get in touch prior to your event by creating a Facebook event or a private group. This gives attendees a chance to ask questions in advance that you or other guests can answer prior to event time to help prevent crisis’. Ask a speaker to attend the event, not just speak. If you host a speaker for 1 day of a 3 day conference, comp them a pass to the other days so they can take in some sessions. Mr. Smith might be your key note speaker on Thursday, but he could still enjoy your event on Friday and Saturday. If he is open about attending on social media, other attendees will be excited about having another opportunity to speak to this person. The day of your event Have the event start outside the door. If your event is taking place at a large function facility, attendees can often be confused about where to go. Start outside and have signs that lead to the check in table and have the check in table as close to the entrance as possible. Have employees staff the event No one knows your business better than your employees and their knowledge can add value to your attendee’s event experience. Music Although your event may encourage networking or education, having some music on can help cut awkward silences. If a PA system is readily available have some soft music playing with no commercials. If your event is larger, have a DJ or musician attend and that can even turn out to be a wow factor for your event. Include a wow factor. One of the sessions I went to at INBOUND suggested bringing in a bunch of puppies for attendees to play with! That might not be the best option for every event, but perhaps a rare and coveted bottle of wine at a wine tasting would be appropriate or a well known Dr. speaking at a Breast Cancer fundraiser. The wow factor can also come in the form of an event only discount or even the swag bags. Provide extras. Especially the ones people are expecting! Wifi, Coffee and power stations have come to be expected at larger events. Smaller events can get away without the power stations, but even if your event doesn’t necessarily scream “technology needed” make sure there is easily accessible WiFi. Post event Say Thank You This may seem like common sense, but having thank you emails, text or mail ready to go before your event ends is key to having attendees return. Sending your thank you within 24 hours of your event has proven to increase repeat attendance. This is also a great time to announce your next event. Maybe it’s not for another year, or maybe its next week, either way take this opportunity to share the details with your audience. Debrief Staff Did you experience any of those unexpected fees we talked about? Did a speaker show up at the incorrect time? These are the things that you and your staff should discuss post event and make a plan to avoid next time. Your different staff members may have all noticed different things depending on where they were stationed so getting everyone together to debrief is key. Start planning for your next event! Now that you have feedback from your employee debriefing and perhaps from an attendee survey, start getting ready for your next event! It’s never too early to line up speakers or sponsors.  
Ready to get started?

It seems like you're ready to do more. This is why we have to meet.