Read: How to plan a special event in simple steps

How to plan a special event in simple steps

Taking the time to plan your event four to six months in advance will help you turn any idea into a success. Hone your event organizer skills and use these event management steps to help avoid any last-minute issues, and create an experience your audience won't be able to refuse.

What do you want your event to achieve

It may seem obvious, but focusing on the purpose of the event from the start will help you achieve your vision. It is also necessary to determine the audience you want to attract, and start thinking about the best ways to attract them through marketing and promotion. If you're considering a younger audience, you'll more likely find and connect with them on social media platforms like TikTok, while more established channels like Facebook work better with older crowds.

Set event budget

Are you holding the event to make a profit or just to cover your costs? Perhaps the goal is to raise money for a charity or a noble cause? Will the tickets be free or charged - and if charged, how much will it cost? Whatever your decision, the answers to these questions will help you focus on the finances of your event, whether you're hosting it physically or in person.

Determine the date and place

Clarifying these key details early in the event process will mean you can share them with potential speakers or guests, creating a more meaningful and valuable presentation. Think about what you require from the venue (location, accessibility, kitchen facilities, liquor licence, etc.)

If your event takes place by default, consider what platform you might use. Zoom is great for handling a large number of attendees.

Consider the content of your event

Now it's time to think about timing by crafting the schedule of events. Whether you're arranging a conference with multiple panels and workshops or an online Q&A with one author, calculating every minute of your event will help you focus on the reservations and arrangements you need to make.

Talk to suppliers and speakers

Your next step to consider when organizing an event is to research suppliers. From DJs and decorators to food trucks and face painters, a lot of the success of your event depends on your ability to find great people to work with. Now is the time to start securing the speakers and checking the availability of presenters and special guests. Find out if they're a good fit for your event by checking where they've appeared before and what kind of audiences they seem to attract.

Health and safety measures plan

If you are hosting your event in person, be sure to cover all possibilities by conducting a risk assessment and developing a health and safety plan to protect suppliers and attendees from potential problems. In these times, restrictions may mean social distancing measures or strict personal protective equipment requirements, so keep them in mind. For virtual events, consider sharing your list of rules and code of conduct with attendees before the big day.


There is no one-size-fits-all approach to event marketing, so explore all the promotional options available. Advertising campaigns and early shows are two great ways to create a buzz. You can also collaborate with sponsors when it comes to promoting, making acquisitions or gifts on social media. Creating a unique hashtag can be a great way to encourage user-generated content and create online conversation.

Send a reminder

In the days leading up to the event, it is essential that you take the time to check in with everyone. And we mean everyone. Email attendees with instructions on how to find the venue or how to log into your video hosting platform, check with suppliers to confirm appointments, and ask speakers if they have any special requests. Having these types of conversations ahead of time can save you valuable time in the day.

Put a contingency plan

While all of your hard work will make sure the event goes smoothly, it is best to be realistic and prepare for each outcome. This way, you can plan how to respond to unexpected obstacles (such as canceling speakers, dropping a venue, or changing COVID-19 restrictions) and putting measures such as clear recovery policies and virtual backups in place that help avoid potential disasters.

Remember post-event activities

Posting photos and reposting messages from attendees on social media may convince people that they should buy tickets for your next event. After all, no one wants to suffer from fear. It's also a good idea to reach out to sellers and sponsors in person to say thank you and to ask for their feedback. Try to learn from their responses and see if there is anything you can do better in the future.

Measure the success of your event

Jot down key metrics like attendance numbers, earnings, lead generation, and survey responses. What is measured, they say, is managed. By investing a small amount of time after each event, you can make those small adjustments to make the next event an even greater success that exceeds your goals.