Visit Orlando Team
Submit Your RFP
Six Essential Planning Tips
Whether you're an experienced professional or planning your first meeting, you need to ask the right questions to make the right decisions. These tips will help you plan the perfect event — from a small conference to a tradeshow for 50,000 attendees — with positive results.
1. Analyze Expectations
Why are you holding your meeting? Analyze why this event is being held and formalize what your expectations are. What makes the most sense to meet your directives or ROI (return on investment)? Think of intangibles like relationship building, not just dollar amounts.
2. Set Measurable Goals
Set your goals and objectives for the meeting and all components involved. Remember these need to be measurable. You should have an overall set of goals and objectives for your meeting, but then apply the same process within each segment — entertainment, audio-visual and food & beverage. Don't forget to survey your attendees either before or during your meeting (it is advisable to survey after the meeting to make sure your goals and objectives were met).
3. Know Your Attendees
Why are people attending your event? Obviously, there is a need to be cost-effective, but knowing what your attendees are expecting and will find relevant will help you have a successful meeting. Who is your target audience? What are they looking to get out of the meeting? Do they earn continuing education credits (CEUs) for attending?
4. Determine Budget
Budget, budget, budget. Are you going to break-even, make a profit, or conduct the meeting at a loss? This should be determined by your leadership, your by-laws or committees. Is sponsorship allowed to supplement your meeting and/or tradeshow? Each meeting will have its own unique budget restrictions and expectations. Knowing what those are from the beginning will make the whole process run smoother.
5. Manage the Process
Apply your expectations, goals and objectives, and budget information to each aspect of your meeting. Contract with speakers, audio-visual, food & beverage, staffing, insurance and risk management. Don't forget to ask about any special needs or requirements. This could be from suppliers, speakers or attendees. Your meeting is unique, and you will have your own set of opportunities — or challenges — to make it successful.
6. Ask for Feedback
Follow up, follow through and move on to the next. Evaluate your process utilizing all resources that will help you be better next time. Internal staff members, attendees, exhibitors, sponsors and suppliers all can provide you with feedback to help you gain valuable information for your next event. Don't be afraid to ask the question of how you did — what went well, what could be better and allow an opportunity for suggestions to change or improve what you have done. Asking direct questions, with measurable results, will help guide you moving forward.
Visit Orlando Can Help
To book your next meeting in Orlando, submit an online RFP. For more information on how Visit Orlando can help you simply call us at 1-800-643-0482 or 407-363-5857.