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How event profs can prepare for events in the post-pandemic era

Posted on 06/07/2022

After months of uncertainty and a lull in economic activities, the world is back in business. With an increase in vaccination rates across most developed world, humans have begun to move again. In the United States, unemployment has plummeted, returning to a near pre-pandemic 3.5% rate; travel and tourism have also returned to near pre-pandemic levels.

How do you prepare for your events?

Below are the things to consider when preparing for events these post-pandemic days. 

Determine the objectives of your event

 For this, the rules have not changed. It would be best to determine what you want the event to achieve. What are the event’s goals and objectives? Is it a trade show? An exhibition? A fundraiser? A conference? What is the event about? The event’s goals and objectives will flow from its main nature. If it’s a fundraising event, you want to decide what other benefits you want from it, apart from money. Would you like to build rapport with your donors? Would you like the attendees to network amongst themselves? All the benefits your company seeks from the event form its list of goals and objectives. It is helpful to envision the event’s end from its beginning and work backward. You can capture all the tiny parts that make up the whole event in your checklist. 

Your event budget

You will likely spend money on your event, no matter its size. With this in mind, it is a wise decision to draw up a budget. An event budget gives direction to your expenditure activities and helps you determine what items you can include based on the overall budget. You can constantly review budgeted costs against actual costs in the market. Drawing up a budget helps you with record-keeping, which is an event planner’s essential companion. In the days of the pandemic, when the industry pivoted to mostly virtual events, budgets excluded physical locations. But now, as we return to physical events, venues will take up their fair share of the overall event budget. 

And with venues comes the guests’ list. How many people are expected to attend? What is the venue’s capacity? Answers to these will determine the guests’ list size and affect what is included in the budget. 

There is also the cost of marketing the event. How will invitees know about the event? How are they communicated? And the event staff? Their logistics costs form part of the budget. Having a complete checklist of all aspects of the event helps build a comprehensive budget.

 

What are your responsibilities as an event planner? 

Now that your event is a reality, what will be your responsibilities? The event conceptualization may have been done at a group level. If you conceptualized it alone and got C-level approval, now is the time to take complete charge of drawing up your checklist. You will be responsible for the event’s theme. What is the big idea behind the event? What is the name you want to give it? And will there be a nickname too? All that falls under your purview. You also will need to plan the budget, reach out to speakers, get the venue ready, reach out to vendors, form a team to help out (in situations where the internal team is insufficient to deliver the event), and prepare post-event reports. In all of this, having a checklist of responsibilities for the event will help you remember all you need to do. 

7 types of events you can run in the post-pandemic era.   

 The events that you can run in the post-pandemic era are not different from those before the pandemic. People now attend events in person, the only difference being that most carry the Covid-19 vaccines; against the pre-pandemic era, Events like tradeshows and exhibitions are in full swing. We at InEvent have attended at least three such exhibitions between last month and June alone. Other events that you can run in this post-pandemic era are: 

  1. Hybrid events
  2. Business Summits
  3. Virtual Networking Events
  4. Corporate Roadshows
  5. Field Marketing Events
  6. Internal Meetings/In-Company events
  7. Online Education Fair

These events can be held hybrid to make it easy for those unable to attend physically to join. This way, the audience size is increased.  

Recommendations on how to improve an event

No matter how perfect your last event turned out, you want to improve on the next one. And below are some of the ways you can execute events that will beat the last perfect one you held.

  1. Early planning is essential: 

You need to plan early. There is no ample time that is too far for an event. Once the date is fixed, even if it is one year ahead, start making calls to secure the aspects that are not entirely under your control, like the venue. Of course, you will be honest with the landlord and vendors about your uncertainty about a few things concerning the event at this stage, like attendance and choice of food. But reaching them early buys you peace of mind because you will plan with them and agree to flexibility to accommodate plan changes. 

  1. Use technology: 

Technology makes life easier. It would be best if you were looking for technologies that can help your job as an event coordinator. Companies like InEvent have software that has helped many Event profs host great events.

  1. Have a dry run:

You need to have a mock presentation before the event to ensure that everything works well. Your team and your speakers (if they can spare the time) can rehearse for the event day to prepare everyone ahead of time. 

  1. Pay attention to your attendees:

What are your attendees saying about the event? Were their expectations met? Are there areas they feel you did poorly? Interacting with them and noting their observations will help you do better in your next event. 

Conclusion

For stakeholders in the events industry, a new reality beckons. The pandemic forced new learnings and innovations, causing a pivot into mostly virtual events. But now, people are returning to in-person gatherings. Relying on virtual events alone won’t cut it as an event manager. The new rule is to go where your clients are going. Events are now held live, and Event Profs should pivot to hybrid.

Let the flexibility that helps you survive the pandemic help you succeed in these days of more interactions and less social distancing.

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