Conquer Your Next Event: The Ultimate 8 Step Event Planning Process

business event planning process steps

There's nothing easy about putting on an event. While some events go off with only a few hitches, a good many events end in abject failure. 

Why do so many events fail? Generally speaking, poor planning is the culprit. That's why, if you're in the process of putting on an event, you need to place a hyper-focus on planning. 

Wondering what goes into the event planning process? Then read on. We're going to give you 8 steps to follow. 


1. Envision the Event

The first aspect of event planning is to envision the event in your head. Not only do you need to decide on the type and nature of event that you're going to put on, but you also need to envision the types of guests that will attend, the number of guests that will attend, the style of the venue, and other such information. 

Will your event take place indoors or outdoors? Will its primary guests be professionals, partiers, families, or some other group of people? Will it be a small event held over the course of one day or a large event held over the course of a week or weekend?

This is the stage at which you lay the foundation of your event. By envisioning your event, you turn it into a real entity. Once it's a real entity, it can be built upon and made a reality. 

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2. Put Together an Event Team 

Unless your event is of the very small variety, you're going to have to build a team to help you put it on. There are all kinds of tasks you'll have to tend to, including marketing, publishing, equipment coordination, booking, and sales, to name just a few. Odds are, you can't complete all of these tasks on your own. 

When filling vacancies for your team, you're advised to hire professionals with ample experience in their respective roles. For instance, if you're hiring someone for marketing, he or she should have a deep background in the marketing field. 

This step is key to the success of your event. Failure to hire quality team members could cause a variety of complications, leading to totally unforeseen disasters. 


3. Establish Funding 

One of the big challenges of putting on an event is obtaining funding. If you don't have enough money of your own, you're going to have to find sponsors. This will require you to make tons of calls and shoot out tons of emails. 

When looking for sponsors, look for those who cater to your style of guests. For instance, if you're putting on a football tailgate party, you might want to try and get beer sponsorships from Coors or Budweiser. However, if you're putting on a vinyl record convention, you might want to try and get beer sponsorships from a local craft brewery. 

As long as they believe that it will provide them with long-term benefits, companies will pay for you to post their advertisements at your event. The key is in finding the right companies and in proving to them that your event is worthwhile. 


4. Choose a Venue 

Once you've obtained funding, you can start solidifying the event specifics. This starts with choosing a venue. 

First, get a feel for the number of guests you'll have. You don't want your venue to be too big or too small. 

Next, make sure that your event has all of the necessary amenities. Odds are, you'll need WiFi, restrooms, and parking. Depending on the nature of your event, you might need other amenities as well. 

Finally, make sure that your prospective venue can book your event at an optimal time. If it's an outdoor venue, you might not want to book your event for February, for instance. 


5. Create a Brand 

When putting on an event, it's impossible to overstate the importance of a brand. Your event's brand is its identity. It's what turns people onto it . . . or turns people off of it. 

Your brand includes everything from the name of your event to its logo to its general color scheme to relevant slogans and the like. These entities can have a seismic effect on guest interest, making or breaking your event. 


6. Market Your Event 

Of all the event planning stages, none is more important than marketing. If you don't market your event properly, guests won't show up, you'll lose money, and your event will be marked as a failure. 

There is a great deal that goes into marketing, so, if you're unfamiliar with the practice, you're advised to hire a marketing advisor. That being said, social media is key. Facebook, Twitter, and other social platforms will help you to reach large amounts of people in short amounts of time. 


7. Obtain Necessary Equipment 

Next, you'll have to obtain the necessary equipment. Equipment needs vary based on the nature of the event and can be anything from minuscule to humongous. 

Odds are, you'll need a sound system, a projector system, and team communication equipment (ie. walkie talkies, smartphones, etc.). You'll likely also need tables, chairs, and various forms of lighting. 


8. Find Event Speakers / Acts / Presenters 

Chances are, if you're putting on an event, you're going to need speakers or entertainment acts or something else of the sort. While we've listed this step last, the truth of the matter is that it needs to be constant. 

Finding the right speakers or acts for your event can have a huge impact on the number of guests you draw in. After all, would you rather go to a music festival featuring Led Zeppelin or the bar band from down the street? No offense to the bar band, but Led Zeppelin wins out every time. 


The Event Planning Process is Key

You might have the greatest event idea the world's ever known. But if you don't put a priority on the event planning process, it could very easily turn into a disaster. Utilize the steps reviewed above, and your event stands a good chance at succeeding. 

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