Events have proven to be a great way to reach and engage with your audience. A memorable and outstanding business event can have a positive impact on your business. Your business event is guaranteed to be a success if you take planning and marketing seriously. These ideas can help you organise an effective and memorable event that converts.

What is the ultimate goal of your business event?

Why you are doing it in the first place. The purpose of your event should be clearly stated. And it should be obvious to your team. Are you looking to create awareness about your products or services ? Do you want to launch a new product? Is it lead generation? Is is to develop customer loyalty? Some businesses organise annual company events to reward outstanding employees. Once you define why it needs to be done, most things will be clear to you.

Who are you targeting?

Your target audience is a factor in pulling off an amazing business event. Your audience, customers, attendees or even employees can have the best experience if you know who they are and they expect from your event. Focus on the one thing your audience can benefit from your event. Make sure you are clear about what you want to achieve for both your business and the attendees. If you intend to use your event as a sales or marketing tool, your target audience becomes even more important when planning.

Key ideas on planning

The details of planning an event can never be overemphasised. Whatever you do before the event will have a direct impact on how the event turns out. Everything matters in the organisation of a business event. Make sure you don’t overlook anything that could cost you during the event. Your brand will be stake. Most events are funded by sponsorships, ticket sales, internal marketing budgets — or a combination of all three. Decide on what will work best for your business. Your venue can make to break your business event. If you are planning to attract a huge audience, prepare several months ahead. Don’t secure a venue until you have a good estimate of how many people will be attending it.

It’s always a good idea to start signing sponsors first, or selling advance tickets if don’t intend to organise it with internal marketing budget. Your chosen venue should be easy to find and must have adequate parking and disabled access too. Your team members should be educated on fire safety procedures and first aid points at the venue. Power options should not be taken for granted. Peace of mind is priceless, especially during the event. You will feel prepared for any emergency power outages, if have a back-up power generator.

There are affordable generators but the fact is, some event managers can’t afford generators and they find the maintenance of such equipment to be quite expensive. The only alternative available to them is generator rental. If you don’t want to be caught by surprise, you should have a generator within easy reach.

Event marketing tips

You should clearly communicate the benefits your business in your marketing messages, and consistently deliver on your promise on the day of the event. In your promotional messages, focus on what your target market will learn, who they will meet and why they should choose your event over others. Use Twitter to start a conversation about the event a few weeks before it starts. A preview will build momentum for the event. Discuss what speakers will cover during the event.

You could even invite some of the speakers to share what attendees should expect from them. It generates anticipation. Media kit about your event should be made available to journalists. If you maintain a business blog, write about the benefits of your event. Get local bloggers involved in spreading your event. A promotional video will also go a long way to spread the message about it. Get listed on event sites. Send press releases to relevant media outlets. Take advantage of YouTube.

Event day

A few things may not go as planned. Be prepared for the unexpected. Can you cope and move on if you have limited logistics? What happens if some of your speakers don’t turn up? What if sound equipment fails? It pays to think about possible failures before they happen. That way you will prepared to implement your backup plans.

After your event

It’s important to take time to review your objectives when it’s all over. Did you achieve your goals? What worked well and what could be improved at your next event? Don’t forget to follow up on your contacts. Begin your engagement with your contacts with a simple thank you. Offer educational resources in your subsequent emails. Don’t begin to sell just yet. It pays to educate first.

Founding Editor @Alltopstartups, Contributor @Entrepreneur, Columnist @Inc. Magazine and Curator at Postanly (his free weekly digest of the best life and career improvement posts on the web. Subscribe for free.