How hard can planning an event be?
Find a venue, invite some speakers, and design a program. Then, promote the event and find some guests to attend.
Sounds so simple, right? So how is it that some events turn into a real mess before you even start planning them?
Well, apart from multiple unpredictable situations, the logistics usually involve time-consuming to-do lists, manual tasks, and repetitive assignments.
Being a planner is already hard, no matter how much experience or education one has.
Imagine how hard it is for someone who has never dealt with planning logistics and is tasked with running a few events per year for his or her company.
Unfortunately, this happens to many professionals (marketers, personal assistants, communication experts, customer success managers, etc.): They ended up planning and running events without any experience whatsoever.
It’s actually quite common.
However, without an event management system, these employees are in for a difficult time. Instead of having access to an all-inclusive event management platform to perform logistic tasks better and quicker, these poor professionals have to deal with a ton of stress and possible financial losses while doing everything manually.
And by everything, I mean everything: designing an event landing page, setting up the registration form, figuring out the attendee types, configuring the online registration, manually updating the guest list in an Excel spreadsheet (and then, of course, updating the document over and over again every time there’s a change in the data), issuing invoices (one by one) … and that’s only about 5% of the work.
Why is this happening?
Why do you think your boss believes you can easily execute everything without any help, such as an event management system, while also doing your everyday job?
The answer is simple: As we previously agreed, people who don’t plan events think this endeavor is an “easy-peasy” box to check off on a to-do list, or that it’s as easy as planning a birthday or dinner party.
Most company CEOs and department managers assume that planning an event is not a big deal, so why waste resources on additional solutions?
That’s why it’s your right, as an employee and a person responsible for planning events, to bring awareness about the necessity of an event management system.
If you don’t, you run the risk of underperforming or suffering from extreme burnout. The best option is to approach your boss and convince him or her to purchase a powerful event planning tool.
Without an event management system, considering the increasing success and use of events as promotion and communication tools, you’ll end up dedicating all of your time to planning, instead of performing your legitimate job tasks.
Both the event and your job will suffer, but you’ll suffer the most.
Planning and managing an event is not a game, and you know it. A professional approach is needed, and most certainly you are ready for it.
So how do you get that professional support?
To help you better communicate your logistic needs and get the head of your institution or department to consider investing in a serious event management system, we’ve put together a list of steps on what you should do.
How to convince your boss to purchase an event management system
Step #1. Document how event planning works
Start by determining your needs.
There’s no shortage of event types, meaning that your planning layout and protocol can differ from others.
Running a conference for potential leads is completely different from planning a B2B matchmaking dynamic.
Depending on the specific characteristics of the event, you follow a certain planning protocol. Evaluating this process, you can easily subtract the tasks you must accomplish. Subsequently, you can find the necessary event management system that can help.
Document your needs so you’ll know what to look for when searching for event management software.
For example, if you know you’ll need to generate invoices and track payments, you’ll definitely want to find a planning platform that allows you to do both easily.
Step #2. Walk your boss through the planning routine
It’s important to remember that people who aren’t involved in event logistics and planning may not understand their complexity.
To make sure that your boss or department head truly understands your needs, consider providing an in-depth explanation of what your planning routine looks like.
For example, you could describe every step of the online registration procedure to your boss. You could emphasize this how it’s tied to building a visually appealing website, setting up user-friendly registration forms, creating and sending invoices, and generating online badges.
You can also explain that you may need to validate the attendance of certain guests, since not all people will have the right credentials or criteria for the event.
By walking your boss through the planning routine in minute detail, you’ll help him or her better understand how logistics works and why it’s so important to purchase an event management system.
Step #3. Present a comparison table of expenses
Usually when you plan an event, you are working with a few outside vendors or third parties. You may need to outsource some of the activities such as program design, event CRM, ticketing, etc.
Although you might have access to different planning services for free, these services are often limited or don’t give you exactly what you need (but it’s close enough).
Usually, the greatest argument for not purchasing an event management system involves the idea of “saving” money by using a free trial version or executing some tasks manually.
Yet, at the end of the day, when you do the math, you may end up spending much more on sporadically outsourcing the planning tasks than you would on just purchasing a powerful digital solution.
Before meeting with your boss, take a piece of paper and draw two columns (or use an Excel spreadsheet or Word document).
In the first column, add up the amount of money you pay third parties whose services you use for your events. Then, make a list of common issues you deal with during the planning process and how much they cost you. Afterward, write down all the free tools you are currently using and all the accounts you have to maintain.
In the second column, make a list with event management software prices and write down all of their advantages.
Finally, weigh the pros and cons and see which column is the best option for your next event. Be sure to bring this list to your meeting with your boss.
When he or she sees how much money the company could save by purchasing an event management system, the odds will be greatly tipped in your favor.
Step #4. Insist on the need to save time
Both using third-party planning apps or services and doing things manually can be extremely time-consuming.
First, you have to learn how the different apps work. In some cases, the onboarding process for these apps can be quite painful.
Second, imagine all the manual work. This could include constantly updating Excel spreadsheets, sending individual emails (what could be more time-consuming than that?), wasting time on designing and creating badges, or building an event landing page.
One task alone can take long hours of work. Say goodbye to coffee and lunch breaks and weekends.
Time is the scarcest resource. You have to let your boss know that you are losing valuable hours on things that can be easily automated.
Step #5. Add the argument of professionalism
No intention to discredit your work. Yet, when you are doing everything manually, there’s sometimes a chance things won’t look professional.
The badges may look homely or the site may have an outdated appearance.
This lack of professionalism will greatly damage your company’s image, which your boss will definitely not want.
Step #6. Explain the perks of event digitization
Before purchasing an event management system, your boss or department manager has to know its benefits and features. Highlight the meaningful analytics you’ll have access to thanks to an event management system.
You’ll know in real time how many attendees you have, how much revenue you’ve incurred, how many meetings have been scheduled (if you’re running a B2B matchmaking event), etc.
On the other hand, you could mention the attendees’ experience and how much it will improve with the help of an event management system. You could, for example, reference the effortless online registration.
Step #7. Talk about the possibility of scaling the events
Corporations and institutions are starting to understand the undeniable power of events as marketing and communication tools. This means more events in the future.
Companies are seeing events as an incredible medium to connect with prospects or audiences, which makes scaling events crucial for success. Only an event management system can help you with this task.
Call to action
The benefits of purchasing an event management system are endless. From increasing brand awareness and saving money to ensuring a higher level of professionalism and better results, an event-planning tool is what you need to excel at your work without going crazy.
That’s why my advice is to prepare yourself as much as possible and persuade your boss you need flexible software that will allow you to plan and run memorable events, which will make your company flourish.