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Event Planning 101

By Korryn McMinn

Events are inevitable in the PR Industry – they serve as a tool so help engage the community and/or the consumers you want to be familiar with your brand.

So, what goes into event planning? A lot more than you might realize – and it all depends on the type of event.

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1. When, Where, Why?

These are essential questions that you need to answer first before you can even begin all the fine details that go into creating a successful event.

When will your event be? Date + time need to be answered as soon as possible. At the same time, a location needs to be decided and planned accordingly with the date. What we mean here is: sometimes locations will not be available on the day you originally planned – you might have to move your date or your location to accommodate your needs.

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2. Money, Honey.

It’s important to plan a budget right up front and stick to it throughout the event. Know how much you’re willing to spend and stick to it. It’s also important to consider if you need sponsors or not. If you do, you need to begin inquiring about this as soon as possible so you have plenty of time.

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3. Follow Up, Follow Up, Follow Up.

We can’t stress this enough – it’s important to follow up (and then follow up again) with people who are participating in the production of the event – whether it be: the caterer, decorator, speakers, sponsors, etc., you must follow up. This helps them because they can ask you any questions they might have before the event. You might feel like you’re annoying them by following up often, but as I always say – better safe than sorry. You would hate to get to event day and not have food because the caterer had the wrong time written down.

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4. Preparation Nation!

When we have events around here we turn into a preparation nation. We make sure we have everything gathered to take to the event the day before – that way if we’re missing anything we have time to run to the store. Make a list of everything you know you’ll need the day of, and on the day before go off of that to get everything together! Again – better safe than sorry. You’d rather know the day before you need something than have to run to the store last minute the day of.

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5. Run the Show, Girl.

The day of the event doesn’t have to be stressful – especially if you follow these tips. Other pro-tips for the event are: make sure everyone has an agenda and/or run of show, have your cell on loud and your number available to all involved behind-the-scenes, and most important – take a deep breath and remain calm! You don’t do anyone a service when you’re freaking out and stressed. Plus, no one likes doing an event with someone yelling at them the whole time. Keep calm and event on!