The 5 Worst Things Organizations are Doing to Plan and Market their Events

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As an event management writer and influencer, it is my job to guide this industry in the most productive and innovative direction possible. On that note, it’s time that I stage an intervention on behalf of the event industry to call out the practices (or lack thereof) that are holding it back.

Event Planning Mistakes

I know, this may be surprising to some of you, but I promise that this is all for the best. We all resist change at times. Change is new, scary, and removes us from our comfort zones.

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These are the five worst things organizations are doing to plan and market their events.

1. Too Much Social Media

While I have written about improving your social media presence, it is important to remember that too much social media activity presents many pitfalls for your event marketing strategy. Just like drinking too much water, overplaying your hand on social media leads to too much of a good thing.

While you want to make sure that you get the word out, you must keep a balance in mind between being a useful resource and being a social media pest.

Optimal posting rates (according to the data):

Facebook: Five-to-ten posts per week

Twitter: Three tweets per day

LinkedIn: One post per weekday

If you aren’t careful with how much you post about your events, your social media feeds will begin to look like this:

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That kind of activity wreaks havoc on your social media engagement and encourages your followers to unfollow or block your channels.

2. Forgetting to Confirm Reservations with Vendors

When I was in middle school I made the mistake of inviting people to my birthday party without actually sending out formal invitations or following up with friends about whether they would be able to attend or not. Unfortunately, as we all know, people have things to do and can’t always remember every event they were invited to.

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Well, my dad was there, just not the majority of people I invited. The truth is, it was my own fault for not writing out formal invitations and following up with those I had invited.

This same principle applies to event planners who don’t take the time to follow up with their vendors. While it is the duty of the vendors to stay on top of their own schedules and clients, it never hurts for a planner to step up and make that extra call to ensure accuracy and attendance.

How many calls would you make if you knew your efforts would guarantee a great vendor experience? I know that if I had to do that party all over again, I would put forward the effort to follow up with everyone I had invited to my birthday.

3. No Live Streaming

Everything is live streamed now, from political rallies to random pranks happening on the street. All of the live streaming tools available to the general public are leaving planners very few excuses for neglecting an official live stream of their events.

Not only should you be offering an official live stream on social media, but you should also encourage your event attendees to do the same using tools such as Facebook Livestream.

Live streaming is the perfect way to give non-attendees a way to experience your event and entice them into registering for the next one.

4. Paper-Based Registration

Seriously, if you are still using paper sign-in sheets and clipboards, I want you to throw them all out now. It’s time to embrace the future of event management and registration by investing in either a free or paid event management software system.

Paper registration systems are inefficient, wasteful, far more prone to error, and cost more money in the long run than running a digital system. The closest your event should come to paper for event attendee management is paper name tags, and even that is debatable with the introduction of RFID technology.

Software based event registration not only allows you to manage and store event attendees without any physical clutter, but it also opens the door for attendee analytics and easily built event reports. Rather than spending all of your time transferring data from paper to PC, you will have more time to evaluate the data you’ve collected.

Join us all in the digital age and ditch the paper!

5. Too Many Events In a Year

Similar to the problem of flooding your social media accounts, hosting too many events in a year wears out your main constituencies and affects event turnout. While you want to provide ample opportunity to your prospective attendees to have the chance to experience your event, a balance must be struck.

There isn’t a magic number for the amount of events that ought to be hosted by your organization each year, so judgement calls must be made based on attendee turnout. This is where event management software comes in handy. With digital attendee management it is easy to measure the fluctuations in turnout with each event to determine what the correct annual number is.

Conclusion

I hope this list has put your organization back on the path of righteousness as we all march towards a future of better event management!

Do you agree with my list? Are there any mistakes that we missed? Be sure to let me know in the comment section below!

Looking for Event Management software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Event Management software solutions.

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Nick Morpus

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Nick Morpus is a former Capterra analyst.

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