Set Your Event Up for Success by Selecting the Right Location
7th September 2015
Make Your Event Location Fit the Objectives and Style of Your Event
How do you select an appropriate destination for an event, whether it’s a region in the world, a specific country, a region within a country, or the actual venue itself? This is vital and contributes greatly to the success (or lack thereof) of the event. Here are some tips to get you started:
For an event to work, it’s important to consider where you want the event to be, easily reached or out of the way. If your event requires an atmosphere of calm, then don’t look at venues in Central London, however convenient it seems. Understanding the purpose of the event – along with the image and reputation of the client – is key here.
Start your search by asking a series of questions to identify the suitability of possible venues. Each client will have their own requirements (budget, catering needs, size constraints, etc.); discuss and agree upon them with the client in the early planning stages to ensure that rooms, facilities and transport links fit the needs.
Destination management organizations (DMOs) and venue search agencies are available, often operating on behalf of a region. However, they vary hugely in terms of the services they provide. A key advantage is that they will be able to negotiate for you and that their purchasing power is likely to outstrip your own. If you go down this route, then agree a thorough brief to enable them to search on your behalf; don’t brief more than one agency at the same time, though, as this often confuses and annoys the venues!
Once you have a venue in mind, undertake a site visit; you may have been to the venue before, but with a specific event in mind you will visit the venue with new eyes. There’s no substitute for a physical inspection of the venue to identify the opportunities and constraints it holds for your event. Arm yourself with a structured checklist and ask questions such as:
- Does the room have good acoustics?
- What AV equipment is available?
- Is there on-site accommodation?
- Is there disabled access?
- Is the room lockable?
There is so much to consider, and it’s imperative to get it right.
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