A Beginners Guide to Running a Corporate Event

A successful corporate event is a way to grow your brand, market your product and network with clients whilst sipping on sparkling wine and chowing down on crab croquettes, all covered by the company credit card. But if the thought of being tasked with planning such a night fills you with a sense of impending doom akin to that time you were ordered to tell the class a fun fact about yourself (yes, we’d rather take a razor scooter to the ankle 55 times), then we’re here to turn that frown upside down :) Follow these simple steps to banish event-phobia and host a day to remember!

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1.     What is the aim of this event ?
Start off with writing down the purpose and objective of your corporate function. Is it to network? A conference? A chance to celebrate with a cocktail party? A product launch? Who is your target audience and what do you want them, and yourself/your company to take away from the event? Make a list of these goals and refer back to them every step of the way to ensure you achieve what you set out to do.

2.     Get your ideas down on paper
Or a whiteboard - use coloured pens, create a mood board, anything to get all the information out of your head and into something visual. Ask your team and main stakeholders for their ideas too and come up with a branding concept for your event. Once you have a picture of the styling and message of your event you can use this as a theme to carry through from the invite, to the venue, food, drinks, decor, right through to the “thank you for coming” email.

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3.     Allocate your budget
You’ve been given a budget, and boy does it seem like a lot of $$$ to be willingly placed in your amateur hands. When you break it down however, you’ll be able to see where it will all go, and corporate events are a case of money well spent is money made. So consider the venue, catering, entertainment and marketing when drawing up a budget.

4.     Select a date and event venue
Get in there early, especially if your event coincides with key dates in the calendar like EOFY, Melbourne Cup or Christmas, so you can lock down your first choice of date and venue. Ensure it’s a date all key participants and invitees can make, and then start the hunt for the perfect event space. Refer back to your branding, check how big your guest list is and always arrange a site inspection to make sure your chosen venue aligns with your vision.

5.     Plan your next move
You did it! You hosted your first successful corporate event! Your boss is happy, your guests left watered, fed and with more than a few new business cards or leaflets in their pockets, but don’t let your guard down quite yet. Work with your team to ensure you have a clear post-event strategy to engage your new potential clients with your business, and turn that budget your drew up earlier into an investment.

 

If you’rethinking of holding an event, check out the Royal Exchange of Sydney, one of Sydney CBD’s leading function spaces, with a team experienced in events both corporate and social. Contact them at manager@royalexchange.com.au for further information.

Kiran Bains