The “Great Recession” may have forever raised the bar on the degree of rigor with which corporations manage their event budgets and event schedules. No longer do event planners have much discretion in event spending and in many cases annual event budgets have been cutback as allocations shift to more measurable lead generation channels. And with the trend toward increased use of technology within events, new tools such as Strategic Meeting Management (SMM) are being used to improve event efficiency and expense management.
As event spending has come under more scrutiny, another trend has emerged: outsourcing of the event planning and management function to third-party event planning firms. Outsourcing corporate event planning can make a lot of sense, depending on the frequency of your events, the types of events you need to run and the diversity of your target audiences.
Here are our top five reasons for outsourcing corporate event planning:
1. Optimize Your Time. Outsourcing will save you and your team time as an experienced third-party event planner will have a readymade network of relationships they can tap into to support your needs. Just doing the research to find all the vendors you will need to coordinate to pull off your event is a huge time sink. And will all these folks work well together? Maybe…maybe not. The more diverse your event formats and the more different your target audiences, the more hiring a third party events manager makes sense. Finally, if you outsource your full event schedule for the full year with the same firm, you will be able to negotiate savings off their typical rate card.
2. Increased Leverage = SAVINGS. Outsourcing your event schedule to an outside party can save you up to 10% in negotiated rates with venues, rental suppliers, audio-visual production teams and event vendors (caterers, photographers, videographers, floral designers, etc.). For companies hosting multiple events throughout the year, this easily cost-justifies the use of an outside resource to plan and manage events.
3. Find all the Latest (and Greatest) Venues. New venues are constantly popping up, which can give your event the edge in terms of audience buzz and event attendance. But who has time to stay on top of all the new spaces just perfect for hosting your next VIP party, client dinner or sales conference? A local event specialist HAS to stay on top of these local hot spots – from the least formal to the most formal – and will save you from having to site-visit all these up-and-coming locations.
4. Tap Into Event Technology Expertise. Have you looked at the plethora of event technology solutions out there? From event registration to social media marketing and attendee pre-event communication, to on-site mobile event apps and interactive features (polling, voting, feedback), there’s a lot to consider when it comes to event technologies. An experienced event planner will have done this research and will be able to recommend solutions that make sense for you.
5. Create a Loyal Team “Member”. A really good event planner must quickly learn your internal company processes for vetting event ideas and making event-based decisions. They have to or they won’t be able to get things done on time and on budget. With a clear path between you and your planner for communication, issue resolution, change management and expense forecasting, an experienced outside planner will quickly look and sound so much like an employee, you’ll hardly remember they don’t actually sit on your payroll!
Need to outsource your event planning? Just call us!
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