A well-executed event has the power to spark goodwill, excitement and enthusiasm, business growth, and strengthen relationships. Event planning isn’t always the easiest, but it can be fun and fulfilling with the right level of preparation. If you’ve put the proper amount of preparation into a special event, the process can go more smoothly and successfully. But what does that preparation entail?

Begin Early

Begin planning as soon as you possibly can. Create a checklist to provide a step-by-step guide to organizing and executing a special event. Once you’ve started planning an event, the first thing you should do is make sure that you’re protected with Special Events insurance. From liquor liability to unexpected cancellations to property damage, you will want to make sure that everything is covered.


The budget should be specific, include revenue opportunities, and account for expenses. Maintain good records, keeping track of all income and expenses. Also, expect the unexpected. Extra expenses are almost always inevitable. In addition, keeping a clean record of all expenses for the event will be helpful in the event that a dispute or a claim relating to the budget or expenses arises.

Schedule Facilities

Event location is critical for success. Consider:

  • Room capacity
  • Whether you’re having an indoor or outdoor event
  • What the weather will be like
  • If there are special needs for ramps/elevators
  • If you’ll need a podium, stage or special equipment
  • How many tables and chairs will be necessary for guests.

Despite what many vendors will tell you, everything is negotiable.

Market the Event

Strong marketing is key to a successful event. There are many different methods you can use to get the word out. Determine who you want to attend, then tailor your advertising accordingly.

Inexpensive methods include using flyers, handouts, email messages, word-of-mouth, and utilizing your social media presence. Create a custom hashtag for your event and encourage your followers to use it. Create a Facebook event, and encourage followers to tag the event in relevant posts.

After an event, upload photos and tell attendees to tag themselves to develop stronger positioning for future events.

Remain Flexible

Over the course of planning the event, things are going to change. Whether it is event times, locations or even the type of event you’re hosting, you must ensure flexibility, remain calm, and and meet the changing demands. It’s rare that an event is pulled off without at least one issue. Assess the most important assets your event will have, and create a backup plan for each.

Arrange for Parking

Be sure there is there is ample parking that is easily accessible to the location of the event. If you have delivery trucks, caterers or special equipment being brought to the event, make sure everyone knows the best location for unloading.

Give it a Run-Through

About two weeks before the event, do a run-through of the entire event process. Organize a team meeting to mentally walk through everything, from initial set up to the follow up process. Often complications are highlighted during the run through allowing time to correct them. Arrange a final run-through a few days before at the venue.

Evaluate Afterwards

To determine success of an event, collect feedback from participants. Create an evaluation form to hand out and collect at the end of the event. To encourage participation, your evaluation form should be anonymous and short.

Take time to reflect to help you improve the event for the next time.Consider the entire planning process and the feedback provided on the evaluation forms.

About Thayer Innes and Freeman Bunting Insurance Agencies

At Thayer-Innes Insurance Agency and Freeman Bunting Insurance Agency, we strive to provide comprehensive insurance solutions to support Ann Arbor homeowners. Our homeowners’ policies can be tailored to meet your specific risk exposures and provides much more coverage than a traditional policy, giving you the peace of mind you deserve. For more information about our products, contact us today at (855) 395-6316.