Organizing a business conference is a somewhat daunting task, but only at first glance. While there is a multitude of tasks to complete, everything is within grasp only if you put some effort into it. The reality of organizing a business conference is that, without previous experience, one can easily get lost in overthinking every minute detail while neglecting more fundamental problems.
In order to make this process simpler for someone trying to do this for the very first time, we have created a guide that explains the most important steps about organizing a business conference.
Develop a business plan
Before creating your business plan for the conference, familiarize yourself with event planning basics, like what, when, who, why and where.
Unless you already found funds for your conference, through an organization or a grant, you will have to develop a budget. In other words, where the money is coming from and how it will be used.
The first element of the calculation is the revenue, then the price of the conference, while the itinerary and speakers will represent a purchasing factor for potential clients.
Find a theme
A crucial step. Although complicated, selecting the right theme will create the right feel for your business conference. To decide on a theme, you will need to first determine the message of your business conference, your target audience and what the attendees are getting out of your conference. In other words, what's in it for them?
Your business conference theme will need to be fun, innovative and something where attendees can make lasting connections within the conference community. A theme that will make them walk away with a feeling of empowerment and that will make from a conference a cohesive whole is what you need.
Venue and AV equipment
Although it seems obvious, many business conference organizers fail to realize that the venue and the AV equipment are some of the most important factors for organizing a successful conference, and that venue selection determines the selection of AV equipment.
For instance, if you are organizing a business conference in some major city like Sydney, you will need to find an audio visual hire in Sydney. Audiovisual hires that are from the same city as your venue of choice are probably already familiar with that venue, have worked there in the past, know what type of AV equipment will work best and what areas of the facility need to be highlighted.
No matter which city you’re organizing your business conference in and whether it is a big corporate event or a small training course, the venue will need to match the type of company you’re organizing the event for. A vibrant, modern company will look for a modern venue that aligns with their brand, while a more traditional company will search for a more traditional venue that will express its values in the best way possible.
A great business conference starts with big marketing efforts. While it is challenging to develop proper marketing in the middle of organizing a business conference, with some planning and hard work, it is still achievable. The number of people that will visit your conference equals the amount of effort you invest in your marketing.
Create event-related videos that you will promote on your social media accounts. Prominent "register now" buttons work great as a clear call to action. You want their action (registration). If you have an email list, pre-event email marketing works wonders for cheap bucks.
The best time to send emails is during the weekend. Since most companies send emails during work hours, weekend emails have higher clickthrough rates. Offline marketing channels include flyers, newspapers, magazines (especially those that are niche-related) and ads on radio or TV.
There are other steps we didn't have time to write about, like finding great speakers for your conference who can engage the audience, or deciding what logistics will be needed for the conference, including food and beverages. Completing the previous and other steps will easily lead to into organizing a business conference that will be talked about for years to come.