Planning a successful charity event is always going to be a stressful undertaking. There are a million and one things to get right before the doors open and the entertainment begins. Here’s a step by step guide to get you thinking about the task at hand and creating something successful:
Decide on What You Are Hoping to Achieve
Before you can begin to plan for your event, you need a clear idea in your head about what the desired outcome will be: A specific fundraising amount? Raising the profile of an organisation or charity? The scale of the event will be dictated by your goals.
Get a Team Together
You won’t be able to put together large scale even without a decent team behind you. Aim for a least a project manager (possibly yourself) and then consider the areas of expertise that you’ll need to call on for other areas of planning, such as catering, entertainment, publicity and marketing.
Set a Budget Before You Begin
If you have a clear aim, and you’ve assembled a team that are working through the planning stages together, you’re at the point where you’ll need to clearly define a budget – and stick to it. Your budget will define the entire scale and feel of the event, so think carefully about what you can afford.
Get Sponsors on Board
With a budget in place, it’s time to approach sponsors. There are two ways to handle this: A large event might call for a single corporate sponsor that can take care of all the funding for the event, or you might want to call upon smaller, local companies that provide cheap or free services rather than any form of direct cash sponsorship. The latter method is also great for quickly spreading the word about what you’re planning.
Decide on the Scale and Logistics Required
Logistics are key to a successful event. You’ll need to think about the venue, the contracts and permits necessary, as well as the entertainment your planning. The catering will need careful thought too: www.icecooltrailers.co.uk, a mobile refrigeration company that specialise in event catering, agree: “Planning the catering for a large outdoor event requires a great deal of thought. it’s imperative you have the facilities to power catering operations and safely store food and drinks”.
Don’t Allow Dates to Clash
It sounds obvious, but many event planners get so wrapped up in the organisation of their event that they overlook important dates that means no-one is able to attend. Don’t make this mistake, and thoroughly check the calendar before you start.
Get the Branding and Design Right
If you want to be noticed, you’ll need a catchy name, a memorable logo, and a tagline that quickly summarises what you hope to achieve. It’s vital that you get this correct, as it might well make or break the event. Even sponsors could be swayed by great branding.
Publicise the Event
Finally, it’s time to publicise the event. Without the public, your event doesn’t really exist. Get a quality website set up, and start blogging and sharing via social media. Alert the local press to your plans and reach out to sponsors for help in spreading the word.
Planning a charity event is a tough undertaking, but with a little help and a lot of determination, it’s possible to stage something truly worthwhile and memorable!
Wendy Lin is a retired teacher and successful entrepreneur. She has sold hundreds of her own watercolour art and enjoys travelling with her family.