Many beginning workshop and seminar leaders shy away from hiring an event planner. Sure they may delegate some tasks to their VA, but still, they do the bulk of the work themselves. They are hesitant, because they think that hiring an event planner is a big expense.
Sure, having a professional event planner on your team costs money, but they will also save you so much, they practically pay for themselves.
As a seminar leader in the market for an event manager, there are few things to look for that will make your seminar or workshop not only run smoothly, but also get you the most bang for your buck. Not every planner works the same way, so be sure to do your due diligence.
Hotel Commission Rebate
If your event manager researches and negotiates your hotel contract for you and you are booking a sleeping room block, you can ask for the event planner to rebate you the 10% commission that they collect from the hotel. Depending on the size of your seminar, that can add up to a substantial savings.
Savvy Negotiation Skills
In addition, you event planner should know exactly what is important to the venue, so they can negotiate win/win contracts for you. This results in possible freebies, lower room rates, reduced or free meeting room space, upgrades, etc. This can easily add up to thousands of dollars, depending on the size of your event.
When I was researching venues for a small workshop for one of my clients and I received a quote for meeting space. I thought it was high and with only one comment from me, I got it down $1,000. And that was for a half day workshop.
Pass Through Discounts
Event planners have many contacts and plan multiple events. We have relationships with many vendors and get better pricing than a one-off seminar leader would. In fact, many vendors have 2 rate cards: the retail rate card and the so called wholesale rate card. Ask your event planner to pass those discounts on to you.
These are three ways that your event planner can save you money directly. But what of the time you will spend planning, following up with vendors, your venue and handling every possible detail? Isn’t that time better spent marketing, so that you can get more butts in the seats?
Every new attendee is not only more money in the bank through ticket sales, but also represents a possible long term client. How many could you lose out on because you are too busy planning the details of your seminar or workshop?
Hiring an event planner makes good business sense, not only in saving you money by handling your logistics, but also in preventing you from making mistakes that could cost you thousands of dollars. And if you hire an planner that can also help you with your event strategy, you can’t help but make your seminar a huge success.
I have a few openings in my schedule to help motivated workshop and seminar leaders plan their events. Contact me if you are interested in working with me to make your event super successful.