5 Ways to Make Your Event Planning Easier

Team GTRTeam GTR June 16, 2021

You can run 99 successful events, but a snafu on number 100 can cause night terrors years later. When perfection seems within reach, the unexpected can happen and disrupt all the amazing planning you’ve done.

Transitioning back to in-person events and adding virtual components is going to add work to your event timeline. Just because hybrid events are going to be busier doesn’t mean they’ll be impossible.

Through talking to our event success planners, Trish Ara, CMP, CTC and Lindsay Hoffman, PMP, CSM, we came up with a list of five ways that your future self will thank you.

Don't be too hard on yourself - this is a new venture for everyone.  There is going to be a learning curve!

1. Establish a Smart Budget

As events enter the world of hybrid, your budget is your key to opening the opportunities of virtual and in-person events. Within every budget level – small, medium, and large – there are ways for you to pull off your event.

Our event planners suggest budgeting your events smartly. You may have a smart watch and a smart home, but what would a smart event budget look like? Invest in practical technology, not the bells and whistles. Use your virtual platform as the brain of your event and automate.

With the right virtual event platform, you can streamline elements of your in-person event like registration, scheduling, and attendee communications.

2. Provide Event Staff Answers to FAQs

Who remembers their first events where you’d be handed a binder with all the information you would need to run the event (and maybe a small country?). Cheers to event planners who never stopped loading up their event binders to help their team know what to expect at their conferences.

Event FAQs are a great way to take the information you have in your binder or need to compile for event staff. You want to have enough information in there so your staff can feel confident answering questions or referring attendees and vendors to the right person who can answer their questions.

💡 Pro Tip: Your Event Staff FAQs should serve as a basis for your public-facing FAQ on your virtual event platform or event mobile app.

3. Establish Clear Staff Roles

Whether you were in a marching band or on the football field, an effective team is one everyone knows their role and what it does for the team.

Events run smoother when people know what they need to do, where they fit in the team, and who to bring specific questions to when they’re stumped. Hold an all-hands meeting a month before the event to bring all event staff up-to-date on the virtual event platform and the in-person event.

During an event, there is no time to waste. Assign roles to staff that play on their strengths. You’ll have specialists and generalists.

A specialist will be someone who does certain roles to perfection. They may be perfect to check people in at registration or introduce speakers on the virtual event platform. Generalists thrive on big picture details. They’d be great to answer attendee questions either in-person or virtually or reset rooms.

Imagine a specialist and generalist duo at registration? Your event will run smoothly and you’ll have time to sit down for lunch for once!

4. Practice

Think about your biggest event snafus. Would you ever make that mistake again? Practice is the safe way to get the bugs out of your process while never having the public see you sweat.

Practice works hand in hand with staff knowing their roles. The bridge between assigning a role and getting to know that role before the event is practice. With events having both in-person and virtual components, you’ll want to start training earlier than with just a single mode like in the past.

You’ll be in the back-end of your event technology often. For your staff, they could convince themself that the night before the event could be enough for them. Unfortunately, for the back-up you need to run an event, you’ll need your staff to have hours of experience with your platform, not just an hour.

We’d suggest scheduling mandatory event technology training for your staff. Several short training sessions can get your staff on the platform and figuring it out. To prepare for training, have them register for the event, fill out their profiles, and get familiar with the parts of the platform they’re managing or need to know for your training.

Make sure you hold an all-hands meeting before the event. It could be a hybrid meeting where you have both in-person and remote staff attend. Present the event plan and let people know what to expect as the event unfolds.

5. Experience the Strength of the Venue’s WiFi

It’s one thing to be told the venue’s WiFi is all good and to experience it on your laptop, cell phone, and badge printing system. If you can, test the venue’s WiFi before you even sign the contract to hold your event there.

Whether there are 50 or 5,000 attendees at your event, you need to know that the WiFi is stable enough for all of them. In-person attendees will be engaged online on the virtual platform, chatting, posting, and video calls. Tradeshow wireless infrastructure will also be vital – as you’ll want to encourage vendors to live stream and host video chats as much as they can.

If the network crashes, it’s both your virtual and hybrid audiences that will suffer.

There are ways to boost signal strength. However, if you’re using a smart budget, then you may find that spending more on a venue with stable WiFi is a wiser investment than any signal booster.

That’s the five ways that your future self will thank you once your event is over. Our team is standing by to help your next event run smoothly. Contact us and get a free 15 minute consultation about ways we can help you plan your next in-person, virtual, or hybrid event.

Regards, Team GTR™ 👋