Planning a conference can be a fun and exciting experience. It can also be a bit overwhelming. Sometimes companies get lost in the logistics of conference planning and become confused, frustrated, and tired. To ensure your next conference is an absolute success, follow our top five conference planning tips. They will help you stay on track and keep you focused and energized.

1. Set your goals and vision
Goals are the most important thing to think about. Without goals, you have nothing to help you judge the outcome of your conference. We’ve found that it can be helpful to first ask yourself why you are having the conference and who the conference is for. Your answers to those questions will allow you to set your goals, which may include elaborations to the following:

  • Profits
  • Lead generations
  • Education
  • Branding
  • Industry recognition

Your conference vision is essentially a reflection of your goals. For example, you may ask yourself, “What would this conference have to be like to meet all of my goals?”

2. Create a simple registration tool
Keeping tracking of who attended the conference is very important. Without a list of attendees, you have no true idea if you reached out to your target audience. A simple registration tool is the best way to make things easy for your attendees and yourself. You can use any tool you like as long as it’s convenient and easy. It’s always best to put a registration station in a place where attendees will have to register before they enter the conference. If needed, you can allocate registration jobs to your employees who’ll be working the conference.

3. Choose a suitable venue and visit it during planning
It’s always a good idea to match your venue to your conference vision. Having an idea of exactly what you want will help you narrow down choices tremendously. Once you have two to three really good choices, you can visit each and make your final decision. From there, you start to plan your guest experience—thinking of everything from start to finish from the perspective of your guest.

4. Set and keep track of your budget
You’ll undoubtedly have financial goals associated with your conference. Even if the goal of the conference isn’t to turn a short or long-term profit, you’ll still want to create and track a budget to make sure your money is well spent. Setting your budget consists of coming up with a reasonable number—neither too high nor too low. Keeping track of your budget consists of recording how much you spend and what you spend it on. Writing things down and keeping them organized in a manner you can understand is imperative. Some degree of discipline may be necessary, but in the long run, it will be totally worth it because you’ll have no spending regrets.

5. Communicate the program and schedule
If you want your conference to be a success, you’re going to have to take measures to ensure your guests and invitees are happy. Communicating the conference program and schedule to your guests and invitees will help you get started on the right track. This way they’ll know what to expect from the conference and won’t be confused or frustrated at any point.

Following these tips is a great way to ensure your conference is a success. Remember, setting your goals is the most important step. If you need any help or want to schedule a one-on-one consultation with a professional conference planner, please feel free to contact our office at any time. We’re always happy to help.