How to Organize a Seminar or an Event

Seminars and events have always been implemented as a holistic experience to participants. Thus, organizing an event requires extensive planning and preparation with most work implemented at least a few months before the actual event. Most of the time, seminars seem to run like clockwork with all events flowing smoothly according to schedule. In reality however, much groundwork has been worked on with the purpose of developing the right atmosphere in addition to a beneficial experience to partipants.

1. Establishing the theme of the event

Each event follows a theme and purpose which will drive the event set-up, the target audiences or the participants, the guests and the marketing approach. In general, a business event such as an international conference for a particular industry will appeal to participants conducting businesses within that industry as well as sponsors who gain mileage out of publicizing their products during the event.

Apart from that, the theme of the seminar will also determine the type of marketing channels to be used to for publicity. This also holds true for the seminar marketing team who will need the event theme to correctly identify target participants and companies to sell the event to.

2. Selecting a venue

Venue selection is highly dependent on the scale of the event. Usually this is determined by the number of participants, the presence of any guests of honor (such as royalty or politicians) the activities during the event, or if there are additional floor space required for exhibition purposes.

A typical seminar of about 100 – 200 can be comfortably implemented in a hotel seminar room, possibly in a theater style setting or classroom setting. However, larger scale events with participant numbers scaling between 500 – 1000 may require a large hall, ballroom, auditorium or a convention center.

The location and quality standard of the venue is also important especially if the event involves the participation of VIPs. With this, a reputable location would be imperative, including good quality and wide range of seminar facilities available. It is always wise to explore the possibility of a few venues and examine their location suitability, level of services, ambience, and costs before coming to a decision.

3. Seminar Marketing and Publicity

Seminar marketing is by far the most critical and often most challenging task in event organizing, and is often regarded as the most critical factor of an event’s success. This is because the number of participants turning up for a seminar is highly dependent on the strength of marketing activities and publicity. Whether or not the event achieves its objective or whether the organizers will walk home with a profit or loss largely depends on the marketability of the event. This means that the right marketing strategy and seminar positioning must be adopted in order to draw adequate event sign-ups.

Most of the time, event organizers who have large budgets will turn to above the line marketing such as newspaper and magazine advertisements as well as radio and television advertising to publicize the event. Press releases may also be sent in to major newspapers, in order to create the awareness of the upcoming event. Additionally, large advertising media banners and posters can also be purchased to advertise the event in high human traffic areas. When using print advertising, the specific magazine or newspaper used must have the target audience of your event as their primary readership base. Also all print media should be copy written with an enticing approach, highlighting the extensive benefits of participation.

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