The following is a guest post from momAgendaCOMM blogger Kris Cain.
The weather is great here in Chicago. Well, except for the past couple of days where we had a dramatic temperature drop from around 90 degrees to 55 degrees. Brrr!! But, that’s Chicago for you! It is always unpredictable. However, the nice weather gets me in the mood for summer planning. I plan a lot of events, not only personally but as part of my business. My scheduling over the next couple of months is PACKED with outings, events, picnics, and more than three class reunion events! Pulling off the perfect summer bash is all about organization.
Here are five tips to keep in mind when planning your event.
1. Generate a list of everything that needs to be done: I use a combination of Evernote on my computer and my momAgenda Planner to list out everything that I need to do to plan the event. This includes contacting sponsors, finding a venue, catering, drinks, swag bags gifts, music, and more. And of course, inviting the guests!
2. Give your guests plenty of notice: Of course things happen, but when planning an event I like to give my guests notice about one month ahead. I might not have all of the details in place, but at least telling them to hold that date and time gives them enough time to find a sitter, arrange transportation, or gather materials (if required). Now of course if the craving hits you to just invite some friends over for an impromptu backyard bash, go for it! Ask everyone to bring some meat to throw on the grill, or a side dish and spend the day on the deck grilling and chilling.
3. Choose a date and time based on your target audience: Think about the best time to hold events. Those that work 9-5 jobs are less likely to come out for an event at 11:00 on a Wednesday. Moms who have young kids in school will probably not be able to attend an event late afternoon during the week because they need to pick up their kids from school. Try to negotiate a time that works for the demographic that will be attending the event.
4. Wow your guests: Instead of your typical sit around and talk party, plan activities or extras that will keep your guests entertained. Whether it includes trying food at a new restaurant, assembling a craft project, engaging in physical activities, or relaxing with spa treatments, guests appreciate the extras and will talk about it when spreading the word about your event.
5. Follow up with your guests: If you are hosting a branded bash, be sure to follow up with your guests to thank them for coming. You can also use that opportunity to pass on relevant information from sponsors, and provide links for them to visit your website, or share discount codes for your business.
Using these simple tips can help you make a great impression on friends, family, and guests attending your summer bash.
Kris Cain is a member of the Council of Media Moms at momAgenda. She writes about technology and her busy life on her blog, Little Tech Girl. You can also find her on Facebook and Twitter.