According to MPI’s industry outlook report, 36% of event planners spend most of their budget on the venue. That’s quite a huge number!
Even if you are not amongst these 36% event planners, you are surely going to spend a good amount from your budget on the venue. Why, you ask?
Because the venue assists every front end facet of your event.
When I say it assists the front end of your event, I definitely don’t mean the grandeur of it. Splurging on a lavish venue is pretty easy. But that does not solve the entire purpose.
A smart event planner understands that a venue is much more than an accommodation area for an event. So, what is the significance of your venue? And how do you find the correct one?
Why should you invest your time in finding the right event venue?
The title itself of this blog might pop this question in your head. Why is there so much fuss about choosing the “right venue” after all? Why can you just not pick up something that suits your budget, is enough to accommodate your attendees and provides the basic amenities? Well, here’s your answer.
Apart from being the ‘accommodation area’;
– An event venue is the first materializing factor of your event’s image. You have worked hard to put this value across through the internet. But your venue is the first contact that materializes and strengthens these values.
If in sync with the brand image, the venue makes it more prominent.
– The event venue puts everything in place. *Not being punny* It gives the proper flow, direction and arrangement to your event. A disorganized venue by default means a chaotic event.
– Your venue adds the required value or substance to the event. Won’t you find it much more interesting if the venue of the next event that you attend has a little-gamified area? The venue adds this substance to your event.
– It is the ultimate carrier of your event. Whatever efforts you have put in throughout the organizing period, all come into action here. Slightest of the fault with your venue and you might not be able to do one thing of what you have planned.
Choosing the right event venue is not important only because you are investing heavily in it. It is mainly important because it shapes a lot of crucial aspects of your event which need to turn out successfully.
So now that we know that this process is inevitable, let’s move to the ‘how-to’ part!
How to choose the perfect event venue?
There are a lot of aspects that need your attention before you finalize a venue. Let’s explore them a bit.
The ‘Basics’ List
There are many basic factors that influence your venue choice. These are usually the secondary elements that you should thoroughly cross-check before picking up a venue.
This is pretty much a given. Based on what all you require from the venue, you need to specify a certain budget that you are ready to give away to it.
Pro Tip — It is not always about the costliest venue. A budget-friendly venue can also be just as good if well-chosen and well-managed.
Even if you have a relatively lower budget for the venue, you can find a lot of good options that would work. All you need is a bit of smart hunting!
#2. Number of attendees
A basic yet very very important factor is the number of attendees. You should have a close approximate of the audience that you are expecting, that too, quite sometime before the event.
A huge venue with a few people or a tight-spaced venue with people crowding all over neither is something that you want for your big day.
#3. Staffing and Security
In order to cater to the requirements of your event attendees, there has to be a good staff available at the venue. Check this beforehand with the venue authorities so as to avoid hassles.
Not just servicing staff, but your event venue also needs ample security. Review the security facilities available at the venue beforehand.
Check for technological facilities like CCTV cameras as well as the security staff and their management.
#4. Basic amenities and technical arrangements
Your venue needs to have some basic amenities for your attendees. This includes refreshment facilities, hygienic and well-maintained restrooms, etc. Check their availability at the venue.
Some basic technical facilities are also needed for hosting a proper event like Audio-Visual facilities, Wi-Fi, etc. Make sure they are available.
Most importantly, start looking for the correct venue at least a few months before the event. Start searching for various available options and try booking the correct one as soon as possible.
Despite finding the ‘ideal venue’ you might not be able to host your event there due to availability issues. Thus, begin your search well before the big day!
The Wizard List
The things mentioned above are taken care of by most of the event planners. They are the basics and everyone needs their importance.
However, there are a few things that only professionals take into consideration. It is these things that add the element of quirk and uniqueness to your event. Here is the ‘wizard list’ for choosing the perfect event venue.
#1. Go with the theme!
Think of this hypothetical situation.
You are invited to a renowned Economic Conference. Industry leaders from all over the world are participating in it. You have been waiting for this conference from months and today is finally The Big Day!
You reach the event venue, to find an art gallery waiting for you. No, the event hasn’t been canceled. The economic conference is taking place in the art gallery.
Quite a bummer, isn’t it?
Though this example was slightly exaggerated, it is totally valid. Event organizers more often than not forget the theme while choosing the venue.
Organisers forget that though a conference can be carried out in a restaurant, it would be a totally different story if you booked a specialized conference room for that.
#2. The Branded Venue!
No. The brand here does not imply the brand that owns the venue. Here the word brand signifies your own brand, the host brand. When you are hosting a conference or an event, you want your attendees to at least remember your brand thoroughly.
For this, you need to utilize various audio and visual cues that are a reflection of your brand.
Since the venue is the main carrier of your event, it is going to help you with this branding as well. Ask the venue authorities as to what all tools and platforms they have to offer which can help your branding. Have a thorough overview of these facilities before finalizing the venue.
#3. The tech-friendly venue!
The basic technological facilities like Wi-Fi and AV equipment are available at almost all the venues. However, with the rise of the tech world and the growing prevalence of event technology, these things are not enough.
If you are planning to host a sizeable event, make sure that the venue has some additional technological facilities available as well. Ensure that the venue has ample arrangements for various audience engagement tools, audience response technology, etc.
#4. The sustainability factor!
No matter where you are or what you do, if you are just a bit more aware and a little less ignorant, you can help make the planet better. Being an event planner as well, you can do your bit to protect the environment.
Especially while choosing the venue, looking out for a few things can be really helpful for sustainable event planning.
Choose an outdoor venue if your event theme permits it. If that’s not possible, try looking for green event venues. In order to help sustainability, many event venues have started using eco-friendly techniques.
They use things like energy-efficient appliances or take steps to minimise event waste. Such small steps add up to become something really significant and useful.
Taking care of such big-small things will help you find out the venue you are looking for. Just begin with a broad perspective and be open to different options. Scrutinize them thoroughly while keeping in mind all your requirements and book the venue before someone else gets it.