“An Event Vs The Event”
The wonderful world of events – can we even live without it now?! With the event sector worth over £42 billion in the UK it’s safe to say that it’s forever expanding, and we, yes you and I are such an intrinsic and special part of the event experience. Let’s face it, whether you’re putting on an event or attending one, the event platform has become so important in our everyday culture. Whether it’s facilitating a conversation, communicating a message, showcasing a talent or simply bringing people together it’s necessary, it’s needed, it’s wanted!
We now have access to the unsaid, the unseen and the unheard with just a click of a button. We are experiencing such things like mental health, education, technology, sport, history, music and art in ways we have never done before and it’s exciting stuff! Even our everyday occasions and celebrations have taken on a whole new lease of life haven’t they? Gender reveals, proposals, and birthday themes have taken creativity to a new level.
We’ve all been to an event, but what are the ones that we have really remembered and why? Let’s keep it real we will remember a bad event as much as we will remember a good one, but what really goes into the makings of an outstanding and successful event?
Personally, for me it doesn’t matter the scale of the event but how it is experienced. Stick with me… as with meeting someone for the first time, our experiences of that person tend to form a lasting impression of them – the same can be said for an event. What lasting impression would you want to transcend across the guests or audience of your event through their experiences?
This is where I start - Experiences make a good event great!
So, here’s my 7 top tips for turning “An” Event into “The” Event…
If You Know You Know - A Clear Objective Please, please know what your event is for. There’s nothing worse than leaving an event and thinking “ummm what was the point of that?”. The objective should be explicitly clear – that’s where you’re going to get buy in from stakeholders too.
Community - Know Your Audience I mean you wouldn’t invite someone to your house, feed and water them and have no idea who they are, what they like and their motivations? Same really applies to events - research couldn’t be more critical to ensuring your event is successful. A simple market research survey can be so beneficial in discovering what people want vs rather than going into it blindly and not connecting with anyone in the way you intended. It’s all about creating the right appeal for the right audience.
It’s In The Detail - Pay Attention Don’t underestimate the details –when done badly, it will be noticed and done well, it will be admired, trust me. The logistics and guest journey are two things to highlight here – consider your event operation – who/what needs to be where and when. Your event running order should have been processed with a fine-tooth comb. Put yourself in your guest’s shoes, how would you like your event journey to be, what would make you feel extra special and thought about.
Dare to Dream – Creating a Unique Experience Be bold in your thinking! Dare to push the boundaries. When I’m assigned an event, I jot down all my initial ideas, regardless how crazy or random. There’s nothing wrong with doing things a little differently, and there’s certainly nothing wrong with letting your creativity run wild. The most obvious elements to get creative with is your venue, food or content and activities. What will make your event stand out from the rest?
The Power of Planning – Be Prepared Plan, plan, plan – the more forward thinking you are the more you’ll be prepared for any eventuality. Preparation is going to give you the confidence to problem solve efficiently and effectively and there’s nothing more reassuring than being able to keep calm in the middle of a storm. Running orders, contact lists, budget sheets are your planning gems.
Your Secret Weapon – Choose Vendors Wisely Your vendors are your biggest secret weapons. So how do you choose the weapons that are going to maximise your results? Write yourself a pros & cons list – it’s that simple.Consider factors like their reviews, price, portfolio, communication and your gut feeling - your gut is just as worthy of your consideration.
You Are Enough – Your Strength is Your Success Look at the end of the day you only have what you have so I can only encourage you to realise your strengths and you utilise them. If you’re a creative and an activator like me use this to your advantage and if you don’t know what they are get to know them. We are all blessed with gifts that are unique to us and that uniqueness is going to allow you to excel in areas that others can’t – it’s the key to your success so get to unlocking. Stop trying to emulate or idolise others, be inspired yes, but know that you’re talent and your strength is enough!
Consider these tips as your toolkit - use all the tools available to you I guarantee your event will be “EvRy-thing” and more ;)