You’ve been tasked with planning a convention. Great, what a big responsibility that is. But you’re ready to step up to the plate. Conventions are, in a way, huge meetings. These are gatherings of like-minded individuals of the same interest or profession, convening together to discuss and tackle things regarding their interests. Examples of these conventions are fan conventions, trade conventions, and hobby conventions. There is always something for everyone.
Planning for a big meeting, however, entails a lot of preparation and being detail-oriented. If you want to have a memorable convention, here are some tips to help you stay on top of things.
Set Your Goals
With an event this big, there need to be goals. Are you after conversion? Do you want to add more members? Do you want to increase awareness of your initiative? Set your goals ahead to save time and resources. And goals also ensure everyone is on the same page.
Now that you have your goals, it’s time to start planning. Assemble the right people with useful skills to help you. Consider forming committees for a large convention, and delegate different tasks per committee. Then start planning for an event date, activities, and look for locations. This is also the time when you determine how many people you expect to attend.
A business plan may also come into play during this stage, especially if your convention has a price. Decide on speakers and the itinerary, as this will be the selling point of your convention.
Next, you’ll have to do more legwork as you look for a venue and services. Have a list of vendors you like. Keep in mind that when you shop around for venues, you also need to consider your catering and audiovisual requirements.
If you choose to go with a hotel venue, most hotels usually require you to use their in-house services. But if your hotel allows using of third party services, you can find these services abundant, especially in areas where big conventions are held. You can easily find convention staffing in Utah.
Talk to Speakers and Take Attendance
While you have an ideal list of speakers you’d like to have, keep your options open in case speakers aren’t available.
If your event has exhibitions, now’s the time to start recruiting for exhibitors to show off their products.
Attendance is the most important aspect of the convention. Good attendance will bring revenue and sponsorship. The more people you have, the more chances for participation. Manage your attendance so that you can track payments, numbers, and organize data for future use. When you plan for attendance, include floor plans, entrance and exits, room layouts, and distributing food and drinks.
In an ideal world, things will go smoothly. But as the event progresses, you may encounter problems along the way. Make sure that you have contingency plans ready and brief your staff to be prepared for mishaps. You’ll never know what to expect in conventions.
Planning for a convention is a big endeavor, but with the right team and planning, the event will go right. Make sure to wander around the convention to see what’s going on.