When you organize and sponsor a networking event, you instantly become a community business leader. Only a leader is responsible for bringing entrepreneurs together to talk business.
Add to that organizing a fantastic event, and you will be regarded as an industry leader and authority, irrespective of your age or experience level.
Furthermore, the exposure is unbeatable. People frequently talk about great events they have attended in the past, suggesting that the benefits extend far beyond the event itself.
How To Plan An Amazing Networking Event
Here, we look at some top tips to help you pull off the perfect networking event.
Make it simple for attendees to register
Having people sign up ahead of time allows you to estimate participation ahead of time. To allow attendees to register, use an established registration app, such as Eventbrite. This helps you get a commitment from attendees by sending an automated reminder via email.
Choose the venue for your event carefully
Many hotels or restaurants will let you host a networking event in their lobby or terrace area, and often will not charge you for the space if the bar is connected They know they will make a profit on food and drinks, so they will offer to cover the space.
Of course, you need to make sure there is adequate space and any equipment you need – tables, screens, seating and so on is included or whether you need to provide your own.
Make sure that it is a decent hotel, is easy for people from out of town to find and that there is plenty of parking space. If people are frustrated before they even walk in the door, it is not going to be a success.
Make sure that the venue is fully up to date with health and safety laws as you could potentially be liable. Carry out a risk assessment before you do anything else – have they got clear fire exits, extinguishers, and Large Atrium Smoke Curtains for example?
Make the check-in process simple
Even if you aren’t charging for an event, having attendees check in is a good idea. You will want to know how many people came, and if you ask for their email addresses, you will be able to follow up and announce upcoming events.
However, don’t drag out the registration process. . Make sure there are plenty of pens and name tags on hand, and that the person checking attendees in is courteous and accommodating.
Make sure that you are connecting with people
Look for opportunities to connect people who would benefit from meeting each other as you meet and greet everyone. Keep a record of these connections and follow up with them the next time you see them. Determine whether or not they benefited from the introduction.
Have floating anchors
At any event, there are always a few people who are standing alone, not talking to anyone. Recruit volunteers to serve as event anchors. Their job is to ensure that everyone is conversing with someone. They should also be excellent connectors, with the ability to listen and be interested in others.
Now that you are armed with these top tips, you can go about planning your amazing networking event.