Events planning used to require a lot of sleepless nights. As an event organizer, you would have to consider all the logistics, from developing your goals and objectives to advertising and marketing, hiring and training staff and volunteers, determining your budget, and booking the venue. The nuances of planning an event could easily be overwhelming. Fortunately, with the advancement of technology and the internet’s collection of resources, planning an event is easier than ever before.
Whether you’re organizing in-person, virtual, or hybrid events, these seven event planning resources can help.
Professional Associations and Networking Groups
Through professional associations and networking groups, you can connect with like-minded individuals who can help you streamline your event operations. Three notable groups are the International Live Events Association (ILEA), the Meeting Professionals International (MPI), and the Event Planners Association (EPA).
International Live Events Association (ILEA)
ILEA is a group that connects thousands of event organizers and professionals around the world. The professionals involved in ILEA have a wide range of event planning skills and expertise that enable them to host some of the most prominent global events. From event organizers to caterers, decorators, technicians, entertainers, educators, and more, ILEA can provide you with networking opportunities and expand your reach.
Since 1987, ILEA has been responsible for streamlining and powering creative and professional events for those involved in non-profit, tourism, tech, entertainment, and other sectors. Their annual membership offers various benefits, including networking and collaboration opportunities, professional and educational development, and motivation, recognition, and credibility. Through their platform, you’ll have access to resources and toolkits to grow your client base, manage daily operations, and increase your revenue.
Meeting Professionals International (MPI)
MPI has a global reach of more than 60,000 people across 75 countries. With the largest meeting and event planner association worldwide, you’ll have access to services that help you grow and lead in new and exciting ways, including networking opportunities and a career-enhancing education through the MPI Academy.
With three membership tiers to choose from, there’s something for everyone, from planners to suppliers and students and faculty. Regardless of the membership you choose, you’ll be sure to have a positive return on investment (ROI) and leading industry advocacy to help you succeed in planning and hosting your event.
Event Planners Association (EPA)
Since 2004, EPA has brought together the entertainment and event industry by providing assistance in marketing and legalities, including insurance, safety training, and state regulations. This group’s tools help organizers operate and succeed in a streamlined way.
As an EPA member, you’ll get access to a global community of over 13,000 professionals, education and training, legal contracts and templates, and more. You’ll even receive marketing collateral, custom-made social media banners and content, and business cards. Plus, you’ll gain important insights and tips from webinars featuring some of the best entrepreneurs in the market.
Online Event Planning Communities and Forums
There are hundreds of event-planning communities and forums out there with unique offerings. To find them, all you have to do is search using Google or social media. The main benefit of joining these communities is being able to connect and network. You’ll also be able to share important information with other members, get advice on event-related topics such as vendor prices and venue selections, stay up to date on industry trends, and share event planning ideas.
Find local communities to stay current with local happenings, or find global communities to grow your network and expand your reach. You can also tailor your search to your specific industry, whether that’s tech, food, annual events, or corporate events. While many communities and forums require a membership fee, some are free.
One example of an event planning forum is the Planners Lounge, where global event and wedding planners can connect to discuss featured topics and share advice. A Facebook group known as Event Planners Forum allows members to ask industry questions and receive answers from experienced planners.
Event Planning Websites and Blogs
With access to websites like WordPress, Medium, and Squarespace, anyone can create and manage a blog. Thus, it’s easy to find websites and blogs catering to event planners. Our website, Events.com, is one helpful event planning website. Here you can find information on keeping your event safe, increasing event attendance, and choosing the best venue for your in-person event.
Websites and blogs are generally free for public viewing. However, they may also offer certain paid services and tools. These are optional and you can still benefit from just reading over the free information blogs and websites provide.
Event Planning Software and Tools
As technology continues to advance, so do the tools and software we have access to. In the past, event planning took a more manual approach, with printed flyers and newspaper spots as advertising, snail-mail invitations, tickets sold at booths, and word-of-mouth recommendations for vendors and venues. Nowadays, things are more automated.
There’s no lack of event management software and tools on the market. Depending on your choice, you’ll get access to an end-to-end event management solution. For example, with EveryEvent, you can create landing pages for your event, set event goals, advertise and market, create online event registrations and check-ins, sell tickets, generate leads, send out push notifications, create engaging and interactive content through surveys and polls, and more.
You’ll even have access to real-time data and analytics to help you track participant engagement and make data-driven decisions for future events.
Event Planning Books and Guides
Whether you’re wanting a physical copy or a digital copy sent to your Kindle or smartphone, you’ll be able to find plenty of event planning books and guides to help you streamline your event from start to finish. There are books and guides for every step of the way and for every experience level, from novice to expert. Plenty has been written by industry experts, such as Ruth Dowson and David Bassett’s Event Planning and Management book, which details a step-by-step formula to organize an effective event. Special Events by Joe Goldblatt is another fantastic read, providing readers with a complete look into everything that goes into planning special events.
Regardless of the book you choose, you’ll be sure to find useful information and advice from industry experts. As you begin your planning, event management books and guides will help illuminate the process.
Event Industry Conferences and Expos
As an event organizer, you should want to connect with like-minded individuals in-person. Conferences and expos, typically hosted at conference centers, provide the best opportunity to do just that. Through these resources, you can network, grow your community, and learn insider secrets to hosting the most successful events. Even if you can’t attend these conferences and expos in person, there are plenty of virtual events.
One of the most significant annual event conferences is the Event Industry Expo, which is a three-day upcoming event orchestrated to connect like-minded event professionals. The Event Industry Expo encourages attendees to network, mingle, and learn. Similarly, the Event Planner Expo boasts the same networking opportunities hosted in its own event space.
Online Event Planning Courses and Certifications
Event planners often hold a bachelor’s degree in event management, business, or a related field. If you’re new to the event planning world, it’s a good idea to start there. However, even if you already have a bachelor’s, your learning doesn’t have to stop. As the event planning world continues to grow and develop new trends, there’s always a chance for you to grow and learn. To keep up with the changing times, industry experts and colleges have released several event planning sources and certificates.
Here are three of the most notable courses and certifications for event planners:
- New York Institute Art+Design’s Online Event Planning Course: With this online event planning course, you’ll be an expert in event planning. You’ll learn to plan meetings, parties, conferences, fundraisers, and more. You’ll also learn how to connect with vendors and clients and how to overcome common challenges.
- Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) Program by the Events Industry Council: Launched in 1985, the CMP course provides students with the knowledge and experience required by event professionals. You’ll learn industry standards, practices, and ethics and how to promote your event.
- National Career Certification Board’s Event Planning Specialist Certification (CEPS): The CEPS course prepares you to enter the world of event organizing and hosting. By the end, you’ll receive recognition as a professional event planner.
Simplify Your Event Planning Process With Events.com
We understand how challenging planning an event can be. Not only do you have to take care of the before, but you also have to plan for what happens during and after. Luckily, the entire process can be simplified using our suite of event planning tools. With our management software and mobile apps, you can improve and streamline your operations from the planning phase to check-in and analyzing the end results.
Whatever you need, we’re here. Learn more about our tools and see how we can help you create the perfect event.