Corporate Event Planning


Corporate Event Planning


While all event planning consists of the usual components—budget, timeline, goals, details, planning corporate events is a whole different arena, involving building relationships with clients and strengthening employee relations.  Product launches, team building training, conferences—all fall under the realm of corporate events.  These events focus on either business development, client relations, or employee training and team building.

Businesses and organizations who want to build lasting relationships need to know how to execute professional events successfully.  Hosting corporate events create opportunities for companies to make a significant impact on their clients and their employees.  These events can promote the company and create connections and collaborations with other businesses.  It can also help build employee morale and encourage team building, resulting in a more productive and motivated work environment.

When planning a corporate event, include the following elements to your planning process:

Set clear, and achievable goals.

Once you’ve decided to host an event, the first step is defining your goal.  What do you want to accomplish with this event?  What is your projected outcome?  Identify clear and achievable goals for your event.  You want to make sure that your purpose for the event is impactful and engaging to your audience.

 Know your audience.

Who are you planning this event for?  Who does it benefit?  What do you want them to take away from the experience?  When you are planning for an event, one of the key elements is identifying your audience.  Knowing who your target audience determines how you create the event according to their needs and interests.  This helps you tailor the experience to them.  When successfully done, your target audience becomes your brand ambassadors, helping you spread your brand and your message through their experience of your event.

Work within a realistic budget.

When planning a corporate event, you need to work within the approved budget.  You need to know your budget to determine what event you can produce.  Decide on how much you want to spend then plan to spend at least 10% more.  Give yourself some space to allocate your resources and determine what truly matters for this event.  You must weigh what you spend on carefully.  Do you spend more on food and drinks or do you drop a couple of hundred dollars on that disco ball to give the even a certain dazzle?  Again, working with a realistic budget enforces the question of what matters for your event.

Plan the details: theme, format, and location.

Once you’ve set your goals, identified your target audience, and set a budget, it is time work out the details.  Choose a theme for your event, determine the best format to present it to your guest, and identify the best location for your event.  Whether the event is being held for clients or for your employees, plan on something interactive and not just a full day of listening to one speaker—unless that’s what your event calls for.  Tailor the details around your goals and your audience.  The main question you ask when diving into the details is, “what do you want your audience’s experience to be?”.

Create and establish a timeline.

Planning your event requires keeping track of every task and every detail through creating a detailed master checklist.  You and your team need to know what needs to be accomplished six months before the event to the day of the actual event.  Your timeline needs to show tasks, who’s responsible, targeted completion date.  Creating and establishing a timeline for your event creates a roadmap as well as ensures that everyone on your team is on the same page.  It keeps you on track to see the progress of your event planning and determines what else needs to be done down to the day of. 

Use technology as a resource.

With the availability of numerous apps to assist with day-to-day tasks, it is no wonder that there are a lot of event management software, platform, and apps to help streamline planning.  The same apps have the possibility to increase engagement and interactivity with attendees.  Event management programs not only keeps track of your event details, it also facilitates collaboration with vendors and the attendees.

Promote the event.

Email invitations.  Use social media.  Create press releases or contact local publications to promote your event.  Find creative ways to get the word out for your event.  Create a website to draw attendees and even sponsors to your event.  The more you spread the word, the more people will come and support your event.  Think outside of the box and use every creative, unconventional way you can think of.  Strategize and plan your event promotion to achieve maximum impact.

Feedback and evaluation.

Whatever the outcome of your event is, it is important to get feedback.  It is important to hear from your guests and your team.  Knowing what made your event a success and what didn’t resonate with your guests is essential in determining your approach and planning for future corporate events.  It provides good insight on ways to improve your event planning process or even what to keep for future events.

Corporate planning is a very involved process that requires a lot of research and managing multiple moving parts.  But done correctly, it has many advantages from creating new connections between clients and co-workers to impacting your company/organization’s brand interactions and development.