The logistics of planning a conference can be a full time job and requires dedication over a long period of time to achieve success. A good conference can garner rave reviews on evaluations; however, the smallest issues that didn’t go right may also be negatively reflected in an evaluation. We offer a few things to consider, call it Conference 101.
Save the Date
Most organizations schedule annual conferences years in advance. The competition is high for venues able to accommodate hundreds of people and equipment at one time comfortably. It is best to work closely with event planners and venue staff to secure your date on the calendar. This is step one so that the date and location can be distributed to conference attendees. Many large and medium size organizations list their conference dates and venues three to four years in advance. The information is helpful to those planning to attend who may have to set up budgets to cover expenses, especially if they must travel a great distance.
Meeting Destination Set
The city to host the conference will be of great interest for conference goers, especially popular tourist destinations. Some conference attendees may be able to book extra time in the area and bring their families along too. For multi-day events, it’s nice to consider cities with an array of additional amenities to enjoy in the evenings after conference activities have concluded for the day.
Bon Appetit- Conference Catering
A big part of planning a conference is figuring out how and where everyone will eat. Typically a conference scheduled over several days will likely include either buffet or seated meals for a luncheon or dinner program. The catering crew will need accurate attendance numbers to serve all of the guests. An extra percentage is usually factored in to accommodate last minute additions. It is critical to make sure catering menus are diverse for conference goers and that the staff can accommodate special dietary request such as vegetarian, gluten-free or to avoid allergies. When attendees register for the conference, they can note their dietary needs and this information can be compiled for the catering staff.
Everyone attending the conference will have some sort of electronic device. It’s a nice touch to include kiosks or stations that can accommodate charging a variety of devices. And make sure the venue has a WiFi network that conference goers can log on to while on site. These little touches will make it seamless for everyone, and the tech savvy crowd will expect to see these amenities.
Shop Til You Drop
Vendor space is an important feature of any conference because it’s where everyone will spend time trying out the latest gadgets or just taking in the sheer magnitude of all the merchandise available for sale. This is big business so making sure vendors have access to WiFi to complete electronic payments is critical. Also make sure there is enough space for shoppers to browse. Good lighting is a plus to enhance the shopping experience.
Attention to details is a key component in planning a successful conference whether it’s scheduled for a single day or a full week. Let our team of professionals here at the Roberts Centre help plan your next conference. Contact us today at 937-283-3272 or submit an RFP here. We will walk you through each step of the planning process and answer any questions you might have regarding your next conference. We aim to ensure your conference will score a rave review from those attending.Tags: CORPORATE EVENTS