If you’ve ever been to a conference, whether big or small, you can likely tell that a lot of work went into the planning and execution of the event. This is because they’re not entirely easy to successfully plan, and being inexperienced with conference planning can lead to yours being a disaster.

Conferences are a vital component of professional development and networking for business. This goes for just about every industry that you can think of. When businesses are able to learn new techniques and methods, it opens the door for innovation and growth. Planning a conference, however, can be a complex and intricate web of challenges that a professional team of conference strategists and planners can tackle with ease.

how do you plan a successful conference

Common Conference Planning Mistakes

In many cases across industries, knowing how not to do something can be just as important as knowing how to do something. The same goes with planning conferences and events, and many people make these common mistakes:

  • Staffing – Ensuring that your conference is adequately staffed is important to allow it to run smoothly. If you are able to find out the needs of your attendees, you can more efficiently plan your staffing levels. Additionally, you should account for the possibility of a percentage of your attendees not showing up and how that affects your staffing.
  • Budget – This one is big. If you are trying to plan your own conference, the excitement you feel and the picture you have in mind for it can be detrimental to the success. It is extremely easy to exceed a reasonable budget to have the biggest impact on your attendees. A carefully planned budget is essential to planning a successful conference.
  • Opportunity to Network – Remember that your conference isn’t about you or your business specifically. As mentioned previously, your attendees are going to want to meet with others, share ideas, and ultimately grow their professional network. Not providing enough opportunities to network with others during a conference is a common mistake.

Five Important Aspects Of Planning A Conference

Hiring a professional conference planning team is the best way to ensure that your conference or event is successful. Their job is to take your ideas and purpose, and forge that into a comprehensive plan that you can follow through on. When working with your team to create your conference, keep these important aspects in mind:

  • Establishing The “Why” – This is the first step, no matter what. This step establishes the purpose of your conference. Are you looking to obtain new clients and increase revenue? Maybe you are doing this for publicity and networking. Understanding why you are having this conference is a key ingredient to the rest of the planning process.
  • Budget – Now that you know the purpose of your conference, you can start looking at the budget. Remember that a common mistake when planning and executing a conference is overspending. Integrating a “cushion” for higher than expected expenses can save you from panic in the future.
  • Location, Location, Location – Choosing the location for your conference will not only have an effect on your budget, but also the effectiveness of your conference. When looking at a location, think about your target audience and attendees. For example, if you are holding a conference about the latest techniques in software development, a Victorian themed venue will be off-putting.
  • Content Of Your Conference – This part encompasses a lot of aspects that could have a lengthy explanation of their own. The content of your conference is like the “meat and potatoes” of it all. This includes guest speakers, presentations, speeches, networking opportunities, and even meals.
  • Marketing – Putting an enormous amount of effort into the planning of your conference is absolutely pointless if no one knows about it in the first place. Be sure to properly market your conference to ensure that you get the desired turnout.

Professional Conference Planning In Fort Worth, Texas

No matter the size, conferences and events take a lot of careful planning to be successful. It takes an experienced, professional team to do it right. Times 10 Association Strategies has over two decades of planning, coordinating, and successfully facilitating conferences and events. If you’re looking for a professional conference planning company in Fort Worth, Texas, to put your conference at peak performance, contact us today.