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Organising a Networking Eventis a great PR move to declare yourselves as a business leader in a particular community or industry vertical. People look at your company / brand as one with great connections, goodwill and reach.
But the key to organising a good networking event is making sure to have the right mix of invitees, creating a space for the right dialogues to take place and flawless execution; all this while your brand gains top of the mind recall.
So, once you have decided your objectives of what you would like to achieve through this networking meet, you need to get down to the process — pre-communication, registration, venue selection, RSVPs, smooth check-ins at the venue and event planning such that it allows you and everyone else to interact with all present.
Pre-event Communicationcan be via e-mailers and invitation kits. It's imperative to follow up with a personal phone call to let the potential attendee know what their attendance at the event would mean to you and also how they would benefit by meeting some of the other invitees.
For Registrationsthere are many stock apps one can choose from. Having people register in advance helps you estimate the attendance ahead of time, and it gets a commitment from attendees too.
Selecting an Appropriate Venuefor a networking event is crucial. A venue should be upscale, easy to locate via GPS or landmarks and must have plenty of parking.
An open air lawn coupled with attractive high-end décor works very well for Networking Events. In case the weather doesn’t allow for an outdoor setting, then opt for a hotel banquet hall.
Plan your Event Agenda
Once you’ve got your invitees interested, and found a great venue, you must remember to have a proper agenda in place. Let’s not assume that just because people have been brought together, they will have a good time.
Plan ice breaker activities, keynote speakers or even some light entertainment like a live band or a specialty act like an illusionist or stand up comedian. Serve good food and have photo op opportunities around your venue (with appropriate hashtags) so that you can leverage some social media exposure too.
Lastly, and most importantly, ensure that you're giving a branded gift, something with daily utility, to help achieve top of the mind recall for your brand, something guests can remember your brand by.