Friday, October 7, 2011
Turn party-planning skills into a business
Have you ever been told that you throw "the best" parties? Do you love choosing event venues, planning the menus and deciding party themes?
Well, if you want to make a career out of event planning, you need to know more than how to arrange a centerpiece. You also need to know the business side, including budgeting and marketing.
You can get that training at TCC. Judy Tarpley, Director of Continuing Education, is teaching a Special Events Management course over three weekends, Oct. 28-Nov. 13. This course will give you the tools you'll need if you are asked to put on any kind of special event such as a fair, fundraiser, concert, etc. And, it is a three-hour college credit course. It costs about $300, which is much cheaper than most of the conferences out there on marketing and event planning.
But, if you want some tips right away, Judy offers these:
1. Know your target audience. If you are planning a special event, think about who you want to attend. What is the objective?
2. Have a budget and stick to it. It may not be a big deal at first glance to increase food and beverage by 5 percent, your audio visual by 10 percent and your exhibits by 15 percent, but each of those categories will affect your bottom line.
3. Don't do business with a hand shake. Always get it in writing. Make sure you document all texts, emails and instant messages, noting changes or additions.
4. Marketing and promotion. It's key. Don't forget about it and don't forget to budget for it. If attendees don't see the marketing, how do they know to attend?
5. Get evaluations from attendees. Feedback is so important. The only way to improve is to hear from your attendees about what could have been done better. Then, use that information to help you with your next event.
This course is being offered on the TCC West Campus. For more information, call 918-595-8033.