The event-planning industry has been on an upward trajectory for years as more clients decide to outsource and leave it to the professionals. In 2012, there were approximately 1.83 million corporate and business conventions, trade shows, meetings and other business-related events in the U.S.
As an event planner, you may have had a hand in organizing more than a few of these! Whether you’re planning a black-tie gala for a major corporate client or a more casual dinner for a SMB up the street, those who hire you depend on you (and pay accordingly) to make sure that everything goes smoothly.
Besides covering your bases with business insurance for event planners, what can you do to make each event a stellar experience? Here are four tips to help you plan your next successful professional event:
Prioritize Smooth Check-In
The real magic happens after people check in and affix their nametags, but you can’t ignore how important this step is in setting the tone. A disorganized, convoluted check-in process will frustrate attendees and throw a wrench into the works.
Even something as simple as a lanyard tree can create visual interest and help attendees find their identification tags. Make sure the entryway is visually pleasing and ergonomic enough for people to conveniently check in and figure out where they’re headed.
Create Photo Opportunities
If you can show the world how memorable and successful your events are, you can grow your event planning business and keep booking important gigs. A little love on social media never hurts! That’s why creating an event hashtag and staging the physical space for photographs is crucial. Think of everything as a backdrop and work hard to make the visual elements pop—plus let people know where to post and share their photos with a catchy, visible call to action.
Learn from the Past
Sometimes events don’t go exactly as you envisioned them, and that’s usually OK. As long as you take stock of what went right and wrong (and why) then you have plenty of wisdom for the future.
Think about registration, scheduling, check-in, flow, seating, venue, vendors and more when you’re evaluating your events, and be honest with yourself about what could have gone better. You can also collect honest feedback from your clients to help shape future professional events.
Prepare for the Worst
Flaky vendors, double-booked venues, menu mix-ups and other catastrophes are the stuff of event planning nightmares. But in a profession with so many moving parts, it’s inevitable that accidents happen and plans fall through. However, it can become a real problem if a client alleges that you didn’t uphold your part of the contract. Besides the hit to your reputation, you could face a lawsuit!
Many event planners lack professional liability insurance (also called errors and omissions coverage), which “typically responds to a planner’s mistake that could lead to breach-of-contract or non-performance claims.” Since you could be held accountable for a vendor’s mistake—including caterers, security staff and more—it’s wise to protect your finances and reputation with an ample policy.
With a savvy combination of foresight and hindsight, you can knock all future professional events out of the park! And for all the hiccups you don’t see coming, make sure your event planners business insurance covers all your bases. Get a quote from CoverHound today!