I don’t claim to be a official event planner or have any formal training in event management but I do think that I’ve gained some pretty valuable experience over the past couple of years that means I can now offer some pretty helpful advice when it comes to how to organise a blogger event.
Since November I have organised two events every single month as part of my Queen Bee role ranging from cute BFF brunches to afternoon teas to creative networking events with guest speakers. Doing the majority of this as a one woman band has meant that I’ve had some occasional obstacles to overcome so I thought I’d share some of the tips I’ve learnt along the way that might help if you too are looking to host a kick-ass blogger event!
Spend Time Researching Venues
Of course the venue is one of the most important factors in any type of event but for blogger events I feel like it is absolutely key! There were three main requirements I was hoping to be able to tick off when I went to view any venues, I wanted it to be bright, (preferably) white and airy. All crucial points when you have a room full of bloggers poised and ready with their cameras to get that all important coffee shot nailed.
When it comes to organising a blogger event you want the atmosphere to be relaxed and chilled and a lot of that comes from the venue itself. For that reason I avoided any stuffy conference spaces and instead looked at coffee shops, restaurants and studios that offered private hire spaces.
I would also always encourage you to go and view any venues in person so you can really get a feel for the space and it allows you to be able to start to envisage how it is going to look on the day. A lot of the time it tends to guide you on the style of decorations you choose and it’s also good to be able to get a head start on considering factors such as table layouts.
Think About Your Attendees Needs
Depending on who is going to be coming along to your event the needs of the attendees are going to be totally different so it’s going to be an important factor to consider. For bloggers think WiFi codes, providing relevant hashtags to use across social media and cute decor that will look great in photos.
When you choose to organise your event is of course a big consideration too, I can’t count the number of events I was invited to midweek when I used to work full time which meant it wasn’t even an option to attend. Because of this, blogger events obviously tend to work best either in the evenings or weekends when most people won’t be working. I’ve tended to lean towards weekend mornings so far as I wanted the events to take place in the daylight when the venues would be looking their best for photos!
Use an Event Organising Platform
For my first event everything was done pretty manually, I sent out individual email invites, I created an attendee list spreadsheet which had to be kept up to date and I sent out reminder emails the day prior to the event. It all ended up being a pretty time consuming affair so fast forward a couple of months and I now use Eventbrite to manage the majority of these things. Using a platform like this means you can simply add all of the details to an event page, promote it across social media and people are free to sign up as and when they wish. Having a attendee list created for you is so helpful and leaves you able to send out reminder emails super simply.
I’ve also found from talking to attendees that people do actually use Eventbrite to search for events going on in their local area so it can really help to reach a much wider audience than just your Facebook friends.
Create a Schedule For The Day
Now this doesn’t have to be over the top, you don’t need to go micro-managing every single minute of the event but having a basic plan of how the day is going to unfold is definitely advisable. I’ve found that this is especially important when organising events with guest speakers as they tend to require a little more planning and structure.
As a general guide I tend to organise events which will last around two hours as I’ve found that this definitely feels like an optimal time. I allow around fifteen to twenty minutes for guests to arrive to give a little bit of leeway for any late arrivals and this is usually the perfect time to crack out any welcome drinks that you might have arranged. We will then usually move on to either the activity I’ve arranged, getting stuck into the meal if it’s a foodie event or welcoming the guest speakers to talk. I’ve found that the events do tend to come to a natural end either after all the food has been demolished or once the guest speakers have wrapped up their talks.
Prepare For Things to Go Wrong
Finally, this is one point that is unfortunately pretty unavoidable no matter how much time you put into planning. Things will go wrong. I’m talking balloons popping, projectors not playing ball, attendees not turning up. Now I know at the time these things will probably feel like the end of the world but in the grand scheme of things, they really really don’t matter and no one apart from you will probably even realise. The number one rule of the day is to stay positive, keep smiling and everything will turn out okay in the end!
Have you ever hosted an event? What are some of the most important things you look for when attending an event?
Are you looking for some assistance organising an event? Why not take a look a some of the ways I can help you out with my event management services.