When setting out to plan a conference, it’s often said that choosing the right venue is the most important task. I find planning a conference is like playing cards, pick a card any card. And saying the venue selection is more important than say choosing the city or DMC or accommodations is a crap shoot. They all hold weight and are equally important to the outcome of the conference. Having said that I do believe choosing the right venue is key to any conference planning.
All conference decisions are important and will impact an attendees’ experience. Not only does the venue eat up a large chunk of the budget; choosing the right venue will definitely influence the other elements required for a successful result. Once you have a budget, date and reason for the conference next on the list is venue selection.
Does Searching for a Conference Venue Overwhelm You?
Finding the best venue can be overwhelming, but really it doesn’t have to be. I remember my first time. With a long list of requirements in hand I set out to find three venues to present to a client. You heard it, three venues in not only another city but another country as well. To say I was a tad bit stressed is only half the truth. But I made it and while things didn’t go perfectly I did learn a lot from the experience.
Venues are usually chosen based on a conference’s unique list of needs and wants. Laying the foundation if you will for success. We all have those key things we look for with respect to; location, dimensions, ambiance, set-up, impression, event type and the like. Selecting the wrong conference venue can cause issues, that later present bigger problems that may not be easy to reverse. And really uncovering the right venue in the end will be pivotal to the conferences success.
Key Factors When Selecting a Conference Venue
As always the Master The Event community came to the rescue. We put out the call to our expert readers and asked them what they think are the key factors in selecting a conference venue. Get ready here are the most popular answers.
Size Matters when we’re talking venues. It makes no difference what type of event; it will not be a success if the room is crammed chock-full of people. You want to make certain the space specs can accommodate all your essentials. Be sure there is enough space for your guests as well as the vendor design needed. Verify the space isn’t too big or too small and can accommodate the set-up you have in mind. And will in the end provide a pleasurable and entertaining event for all.
Location is crucial to ensuring an event is unforgettable. The right location can take an event from ordinary to extraordinary. Choose a location that is situated in a suitable area. And depending on the event the venue location should be easy to get to, have convenient transportation and lots of parking. If it’s hard to find or get to attendance will feel the effects.
Costs are important. A financial plan or budget is one of the more important considerations when saying yes to or vetoing prospective venues. A venue and all it requires takes a big chunk of the budget. No matter how perfect the space seems, if you can’t afford the fee, you can’t afford to hold the conference event there.
What value added services does the venue provide. Do they offer set up and tear down staff? Does the contract include rentals? Are they licensed to serve alcohol? Do they have insurance? Are outside vendors permitted? And does the venue have its own flair and personality? All things that will help to make your job easier while at the same time help the bottom line.
A site inspection is imperative. It’s worthwhile to go have a look see at the venue. And be sure to do a check of the space when you’re there. You want to be certain that the venue is cared for and in good condition. Take a look at the public space, the parking area, the washrooms and the space you will be renting. You want to be sure they are cared for and in good condition.