If you always do what you’ve always done...
04 January 2018 by Naresh Raj
If you’ve been organising your events the same way you’ve always done it, it’s time for a change. I’m not talking about the type of events you run, necessarily, or the content or style of them. I’m referring to how you organise them - what systems and processes you have in place and where you invest most of your time and effort.
A key reason for 99% of professional body members to join is to be part of their professional community and to connect with other, like-minded individuals. This means that events are, and always will be, an important part of the professional body’s services. It doesn’t mean you have to continue organising them the same way you did 10+ years ago.
These days all resources are pushed to the limits, whether it’s men, money or minutes, so you need to be as effective as possible in everything you do. Not only that, your members expect more from their membership today - it’s not just you feeling the effects of tightening purse strings!
So what’s the answer to streamlining your event organisation?
Technology. CRM to be precise. And here’s how/why…
1. Oversee ALL your events in one place at the same time
You won’t just organise one event during the year; there’ll be several events at any one time, and all at different stages of organisation. Being able to see where all of your events are in the process at any one time will reduce the chance of things being missed, reduce duplication of effort (see where you can ‘kills two birds with one stone’) and generally make organising events more manageable.
2. Ensure all vital information is located in one place, not in people’s heads or silos
One of the biggest risks with information not being stored in one central location is that people can leave, fall sick or similar, leaving the event in the lurch and risking its success. If your event information is stored in your CRM this risk is greatly reduced as anyone with CRM access can see where the planning is at and find all the information they need to continue.
3. Easily clone events
If you run a series of events using a similar format you can easily clone an event, saving time & effort and ensuring that repeated information is already there.
4. Reduce the admin by automating as much as possible
No matter what type of event, there will be activities and tasks you have to do every time. Many of these can be automated via your CRM, freeing you up to focus on the bigger issues. Tasks ripe for automation include:
- Chasing speakers for presentations
- Sending joining instructions
- Creating delegate lists
- Gathering dietary requirements together
5. Ensure all your contacts, whether delegates, speakers or sponsors are in one place
Manage interactions with all event-related contacts more easily, no matter what type of role they play. A speaker at one event may be a delegate at another and you can get a much more rounded picture of them as a person if all information about them is stored in CRM. Equally, it helps to build up a 360 view of your members, incorporating their event attendance. You can also manage communications with your event contacts much more easily with CRM, especially if it is integrated with your marketing automation platform.
There are many more ways CRM can help event managers but essentially technology can free you up to focus on really making your member events memorable, must-attend activities rather than getting stressed by the little things.
What would you like to improve about your event organisation?