One of the reasons that events of all sizes can be so challenging to successfully execute is the number of moving parts and last-minute alterations. Most events are going to involve more than just your own marketing or events department. It especially takes a complex mix of people to pull off a large event, including the venue staff, your internal team, possibly an outside agency or two, plus an A/V production company to help with audio, visual, lighting, and other areas of producing the event such as content. If there’s food involved, then you’ll add an entirely new layer of complexity with the catering and wait staff, etc… As you can see delivering a successful event is no easy task.
With so many moving parts, it’s easy to see why many events don’t exactly run smoothly. And trust us – we’ve seen our fair share that didn’t. If the various teams involved in planning the event aren’t on the same page, they’ll end up at a nearly impossible pass as they try to execute without proper planning and alignment. You, on the other end, will have stressful last-minute changes that not only alter the event but could be costly if you don’t have the right A/V partner.
To avoid this kind of dysfunction at your next event, it’s vitally important to gain up-front alignment from all parties involved.
The Vital Importance of Strategic Consulting
Those who fail to plan, plan to fail. There’s no doubt that this statement rings true in the event space almost daily. Sure, this axiom is a bit tired, but it’s still as true as ever. Without some strategic consulting between the major players at your upcoming event, you’re risking some kind of failure or last-minute change. Don’t wait until a couple of weeks prior to the event. As soon as you bring various teams on board for the event, hold a strategic planning meeting to ensure all those teams understand the event and what each team’s role will be.
At this stage, you’ll be at the start of your event planning. This is where you pursue up-front alignment.
Taking this approach will also help to drive to the surface any deal-breaking problems before it’s too late. You don’t want to hear the week of your event that one of the teams is not equipped to deliver what you expect them to deliver. An up-front strategic consult can help show you potential red flags like these and you can put appropriate plans in place to work around them.
Align Your Brand, Agency and A/V Production Teams
Of course, the ideal scenario is to have every team involved in the event 100% aligned through your early strategic planning. But far and away the most important three groups are your internal team and brand, your external agency (if you’re using one), and your A/V production team.
Why? Because these three groups are your core. Imagine that something goes wrong and your caterer changes the menu the week of the event. This can be disappointing, but it’s far from a game-changer. The show will go on.
However, if your in-house team and your external agency aren’t aligned, your event could be a disaster. Imagine what would happen if your external marketing vendor produces signage sized for a smaller venue than the one your in-house events team booked, or that the content you were going to show was designed for a larger screen ratio for example.
The same goes for your A/V production team. Even the best meeting and events tech won’t solve misalignment. They must get accurate information to deliver a quality A/V experience. Any misalignment can lead to disappointing results.
Even More Important Approaching Year’s End
Up-front alignment through proactive strategic planning is essential for every event, of course. But it becomes even more important as we approach the end of the year. You may have an end-of-year town hall meeting rapidly approaching. And 2020 is coming soon, and with it comes a whole new slate of corporate events from sales kickoffs to supplier summits.
Whatever your event experiences have been stellar or less than stellar in 2019, now is the time to ensure your 2020 calendar is the best yet.
Already Missed the Boat? We Can Still Help
We mean it! Proper planning empowers you to host successful events, but we also understand what it’s like in the real world. Sometimes the planning just doesn’t happen when it needs to.
If you’re working on an event right now and you’re afraid that the schedule is already too far gone, we can still help. We’ve done it before. Our team has the skill needed to pull off a successful event, even without the ideal amount of notice. Whether it’s production or content Bluewater is here for you.