Whether you are a professional planner or you got stuck with the task for your business, knowing how to plan an event can be a tricky endeavor to ensure that you cover all of the detail.
From food to location, to atmosphere and more, the perfect event takes planning and effort to come off seamlessly.
How to Plan an Event Checklist
A complete checklist and how-to guide for anyone preparing to plan a full-blown event.
The various steps in the planning of event are as follows:
1. Conceptualize Big Idea With a Theme
Whether, the event manager is doing a cocktail party, a workshop, or the company picnic, setting a theme gives the tone of the event and gives him a starting point when picking food, music, decor, and more.
He should make sure that the theme is appropriate to the crowd for which is planned.
A large variety of theme ideas can be got online.
2. Analysis of Budget
The event planner must have a realistic idea of what it will cost to host an event.
He should not reserve a venue or choose vendors without finalizing this important number.
Depending on it budget can be allocated to each category.
The main categories would be venue, food, decor, entertainment.
Other categories would be hotels, transportation and parking, rentals, A/V, stationery and design, and insurance.
3. Making Guest List
Deciding the ideal guest will depend on the goals.
Potential clients, community leaders. employees, other business leaders, current customers, and clients.
After determining the target guest, he should create a reason for the guests to attend.
Well, known speakers, sneak peeks of new launches.
4. Set a Preliminary Budget
By determining how much you can spend on food, entertainment, room rental, invitations, and any other additions that you would like to make for the event.
5. Selection of Date and Day
Whilelooking at possible dates, one checks the calendar to also look at holidays, local events, sporting events, and scheduling conflicts of your companies leaders.
6. Choice of Location
The first criteria are to make a list of venues that are available, fit the budget, and have the space for the guest count.
Even more important is that he should find a location that creates the style and feel for the event that matches the desired goals.
The theme and colors should complement the venue.
7. Decide on Promotion and Tickets
Depending on the goals of the event, the planner may want to create a promotion committee to raise awareness and increase attendance.
Along with promotions, deciding on a marketing strategy as well as possible thank gifts and swag for attendances can be added.
Ticket sales may also be a part of the plan if the goal is to raise money for a non-profit cause.
8. Hire Vendors
The event manager must hire vendors to fill needs that can’t be filled from within the company or if management decides not to take staff away from regular duties.
These would include event planners, venues, caterers, florists, decor and rentals, A/V, lighting, entertainment, and marketing.
9. Start Making Appointments to View Location and Connect other Vendors
- Discuss room rental costs and what is included in those fees.
- Determine what the hours are that you will have access to the room. If no one books it the night before, can you have access to get in and decorate or set up? Are they providing the service ware for the food, or do you need to bring in or rent your own linens, plates, napkins, and silverware?
- Does the food have to come from that location, or can you bring in an outside caterer?
- If you can bring in your own caterer, start meeting with potential vendors to taste their food and determine their pricing.
10. Venue Security
Determine is your venue requires you to bring in outside security for your event.
This not only protects you from liability, but this can help keep outsiders from crashing your party.
11. License if Need
Look to hire a licensed bartender if your facility cannot provide one, and you choose to have alcohol at the event.
12. Buying Decorations Items
Find out if the venue can provide decorations or if you have to supply your own.
Some facilities have a wide variety of items that you can use such as candles, mirrors to set on the table, glass jars, etc.
So if you can take advantage of anything being provided for free, you can save quite a bit on your budget.
Different types of events will require different types of decorations. Based on the requirements decorations can be chosen and picked.
13. Determine the Menu with Caterer or Facility
Event planner should determine the timing and manner of serving. Will it be a buffet or a sit-down, plated meal?
Is he doing appetizers ahead of time, and /or considering a dessert bar later in the evening?
He has to iron out the exact detail and timing so that his guests don’t go hungry at any point.
14. Sign Contracts with Vendors
This has to be done to and make sure that they provide him with a copy of the contract.
15. Make Design and Send Invitations
The event planner can send the invitations to the audience traditionally or by the modern way of mail.
16. Entertainment and Fun
These two areas are sometimes overlooked at business parties.
Entertainment can add to the atmosphere, energize, and create an unforgettable experience.
17. Photography and Videography
Having a photographer at the event is vital for capturing images to use for PR, newspapers, stockholders meetings, and advertising.
18. Prepare a To-Do List Timeline
If there is any detail that needs to covered or are time-sensitive, he has to ensure that he has created a countdown list to stay on top of the minute details.
19. Create an Agenda
Unless the event has a cocktail or mingling type atmosphere, creating an agenda is a must.
This will keep guests informed of workshops, speakers, product demos, and more.
These could be a physical program, a large billboard type piece or a catalog.
For smaller more casual events, posting an event flow will keep guests from getting bored or leaving early.
20. Confirm Details
This is where logistics and details need great organization and overnight.
A timeline must be set up, during the event and post-event.
Details regarding staffing, guest admission and seating, Stationary – programs, menus, invitation, swag and giveaways, speakers and workshops, parking and transportation, etc. must be looked in to by the corporate event manager.
21. Create Energy
The event planner uses traditional and social media to promote the event.
Hashtags are a great way to create community and promotion on youtube, twitter and Instagram, and Facebook or other social media site.
He should have a staff member harness social media during the event to post pictures and videos on youtube, Facebook, and Instagram to reply to tweets and engage with hashtags.
22. Check and Double Check the List
The week before, the day before and the day of check should be done by the event manager.
He has to make sure that nothing is forgotten.
23. Have a Designed Errand Person Chosen
This is done so that he one stay and orchestrate the event while the manager sends that person off for any additional items that need to be picked up.
24. Following Up
The event planner collects suggestions from attendees.
Have decision-makers write up their opinions on the planning process, event results, and meeting goals.
He should compare the estimated budget to final costs.
Make a feedback sheet for your brand image. It will help you in upcoming events.