Corporate events: always nice to attend and a great way to cultivate business relationships. But they need a lot of planning! Anyone who has organised one will tell you that. However, putting in the extra effort to craft a memorable, entertaining and, above all, relevant event can make a significant impact on stakeholders and clients, and make a positive difference to your business. Below are some of our top tips for keeping your eye on the prize and maximising your return on investment when organising a successful corporate event.
Corporate events should not be seen as one-offs or add-ons. They should be considered an integral part of your business’s over-arching marketing and PR strategy. As such, they should demonstrate the same values that other parts of the strategy promote for your business and give exposure to your brand. Corporate events are a great way to meet your clients face to face and you should take the opportunity to really show what the company is about.
A good corporate event is one that is memorable. Come up with ideas that go further than the run-of-the-mill conference or presentation. An event outdoors or revolving around an activity can engage clients, demonstrate your creativity, and make a lasting impression.
Judge your crowd
Corporate events do not simply come out of the box, ready for anyone to enjoy. You need to ensure that the event you plan is suitable for the audience you expect to attend. If you are intending to host a large number of people with ties to different parts of the business, you might consider several smaller events, each tailored to the specific demographic of the audience, rather than a large one, in which your message and identity may not come across so well to everyone.
It sounds obvious, but you need your guests to know who is hosting the event. Having your brand and logo as integral parts of the event is a must. If your branding is visually strong, and your event memorable, the guests will instinctively equate the two – but only if they see it! You don’t have to plaster the place, but equally a stack of leaflets by the door just won’t cut it. Get creative. Decor and decoration are good avenues to explore.
First to Last
You need to plan your event so that it is memorable and on-message from the moment the first guest arrives (after, of course, having sent suitably impressive invitations) and the last guest leaves. You must retain focus throughout the event and ensure all your guests feel like they have had equal attention.
The event may be over but the work is not. A good follow-up strategy should be an integral part of your event planning stage, as should a procedure to communicate with those who have been unable to attend. Even the best event may soon slip from someone’s mind if contact is not maintained.
With time and effort, anyone can construct a corporate event that will delight and impress their clients. When planning a corporate event, always remember who you are trying to entertain and the best way of getting your message across to those people.