A conference planning guide is designed to help walk you through the various steps required when planning an event. Finding the right conference planning guide can be a task in itself. There are many guides available that, at first glance, appear to be designed to assist you. However be careful as many of these planning guides are actually a marketing tool designed to pitch a sale to you. Now there’s nothing wrong with being sold to however sometimes you just need a proper checklist or assistance with getting your event underway.
A good conference planning guide will help make you think of all of the steps necessary for your event. Then it’ll structure your to do list in such a way that it helps break down the overall tasks into easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions.
Suggested Places to Look for a Conference Planning Guide
I’m a big supporter of Convention and Visitors Bureaus (CVBs). You may have noticed a lot of my post often refer to CVB’s and how they can be of great assistance to meeting and event planners. The one thing I like about CVB’s is that they are truly set up to assist people bringing conferences to their respective cities. The only flag that I would raise is that CVBs will promote only companies that have taken a membership with them. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing it’s just something that you should be aware of. They are objective and, for most planners, their conference planning guide is a robust tool (often times they are web-based too).
Another area to look for a conference planning guide is through your hotel. Today most major hotel chains as well as most of the boutique hotels offer an area on their websites for meeting planners to download a conference planning guide. A lot of people asked me why the hotels would not charge for such a service. Well in today’s competitive world the more value added services hotel can offer without charging a guest the more likely it is that they may be selected by the meeting planner.
Planning for a conference is a huge undertaking at the best of times. The good news is that there are a lot of free resources available to assist you. I always raise a flag when you have to sign up for something in order to download a “free guide”. Before you do make sure you visit the CVB in the city where your conference will occur. As well, check with your hotel contact for any planning materials that they can provide you.