London is the number one EMEA city in terms of meetings and events activity, and in the UK as a whole, around 1.3 million events are held every year. If your small business is planning an event soon and you wish to rely only partly on professional help, taking care of the main body of organisational help yourself, then getting every step right is vital. A corporate event can mark your business as an upcoming, innovative leader in your industry, provided you get the key elements of a great event just right.
Picking the Right Location
Even if your business has been up and running for just a few months, you may have already built vital connections with local businesses – including those in the catering business. When selecting a venue for your event, aspects such as location, ease of parking, size, and installations, should be considered before making a selection. Will you be holding a small, mainly informative event, or is this all about throwing a bash to thank clients for their loyalty? Do you plan on splurging on a fully catered event or will you simply be offering wine/Champagne and small bites? Making an invite list is the first step towards choosing a location that is the right size for the style and spirit of your event.
Ensuring You Have the Support Staff You Need
It is always a good idea to have a team greeting your guest; perhaps keeping a guest list or having a QR code scanner in hand to officially let guests in. This is especially true if you will be hosting a relatively large, party-style event, as you will have to limit entry to those invited. You should also have a couple of staff roaming the event, ensuring everyone is okay and communicating via headsets with other members of the team. If the event is a night one, having security at entry points is important. The venue you are hiring will most probably be able to refer you to good freelance events staff you can hire for the night.
The Right Technology is Key
As mentioned above, QR codes are one way to streamline entry to your event. Other technologies you can avail of include GPS trackers, experiential stations featuring AR tech, and the use of live streaming apps to share the highlights of your conference with digital followers. Corporate and live events can also be enhanced in quality by inviting remote keynotes that can live stream in. Your company’s social media accounts – including Facebook and Twitter, can also be used to cover key elements of the event to your followers. Make sure to publish not only what is taking place onstage, but also interesting backstage interviews with top management, speakers, and distinguished clients.
Upping the Entertainment Factor
Even if you are hosting a small cocktail-type event, having a live band on hand can add the does of ambience you need to encourage a relaxed atmosphere that is conducive to networking. If the event is large and the venue has space for sound and lighting equipment, then hiring a post-conference band and offering drinks/catering is a great way to make the event memorable. Entertainment should be more than an aside. For the talks themselves, list down the equipment you need; most venues will have events equipment but you may need to hire additional items. The list of equipment required usually includes plasma screens, projectors, microphones, and lecterns.
Planning a successful event is all about making it authentically useful or entertaining for attendees – and therefore memorable. Mark your company as a standard-bearer by getting technology on your side, via live streaming, augmented reality, QR codes, and project mapping, etc. Ensure that even if you have a small budget, entertainment and catering are on point. This will help keep attendees at your event longer and encourage the kind of networking that can keep business deals coming in.