The Conference Venues Guide to Picking the Perfect Venue

The Conference Venues Guide to Picking the Perfect Venue

Whether you are putting a conference together for customers or partners, or even a large conference for a vast number of attendees, the right venue will make all the difference. As conference venues finders with years of experience, we know what it takes to choose the best venue for your next corporate event or conference, and so we are going to share our top tips to consider when choosing the perfect venue: #1 Accessibility The location of your chosen conference venue is of the highest importance as it will have an effect on the number of attendees you get. Research has shown the accessibility is high on the list for attendees when they are considering whether to attend a conference or not, and so it is important that your venue is accessible by plane, train and car. If attendees are going to arrive by car then it is important that they have somewhere to park that car when they arrive, that is not going to cost them an arm and a leg, and that there is also accessible public transport for those who want to use that option. #2 Bed and Breakfast If your attendees are travelling a long way to your chosen conference centres then they may want to stay overnight, either before the event or during it. Therefore, you should make sure there is adequate accommodation available for them within a reasonable distance of the event. If the hotel is within walking distance of the event, then all the better, but if it is not then talk to the hotel about the possibility of a shuttle service or talk to local taxi companies about the availability and cost of their vehicles. #3 Availability One of the most important things to check obviously is if your chosen venue is available on the date you were thinking of using it - as if it is not then it is back to the drawing board! However, even if it is available you might want to check if there are other events or conferences running on the same day. If it is the peak season for the venue, then you may find public spaces are full of traffic which may dampen the opportunities for organic networking to take place in these areas. #4 Suitability Is the venue you want to use suitable for the image you are trying to portray with your conference, and also the image that your stakeholders and sponsors are comfortable with as well. Check with the venue if there are any other events going on, and make sure they don't clash with your event or brand messaging - for example a tee-totallers conference may put a damper on a new alcoholic drink launch! #5 Costs Many conference planners have event budgets of less than 50k pound and so any budget constraints you do have must be conveyed to the venue right at the beginning. However, if you have found the perfect venue for your event but it is a little out of budget, try negotiating with them to lower the cost in return for you signing a multi-year contract for example. #6 Staff Levels Talk to the venue about their proposed staffing levels during your event so that you can calculate the attendee to staff ratio, and ensure you are happy with it. You need to be happy that there will be enough waiting staff, concierge support and even security staff around at your event. As conference organiser you will have a lot to take care off on the day as well, so it may be worthwhile checking whether the venue has an event organiser who may be able to help you our as well. #7 Facilities The best way to save yourself as much stress as possible on the big day, is to find a venue which already has a lot of the components that you want to use on the day such as audiovisual equipment, microphones and stages. You will also need to pay close attention to the set-up capacities within the venue so that you choose the right spaces for break-out rooms and sponsor areas and so on. #8 Branding It is also very important to consider branding opportunities within the venue and make sure you make the most of every opportunity available to you. Talk to the venue early on about what branding and signage opportunities are available throughout the venue and not just in the spaces that you are using for your conference. #9 Technical Requirements Nowadays everybody expects WiFi access when they attend an event, so make sure you have sorted this with the venue before the day, and also charging stations as well. Everybody uses technology on a daily basis these days, and so you should make it as easy as possible for them to use it. You should also ensure that there is IT support on site during the event, to make sure the WiFi runs as seamlessly as possible. #10 Food and Drink Nothing will affect your conferences image more than hungry and thirsty attendees, but you don't have to spend a huge amount on catering. Check with the venue whether you have to use their services, or whether you can bring an outside caterer in, as these can often be cheaper. You will also need to ensure you cater for special dietary requirements and food allergies as well as reacting to any last-minute food requests during the conference. Those are some of our top tips for finding the perfect venue for your event, however if you need some more help in doing so just talk to our experienced team. We have good relationships with venues up and down the country, from Kettering conference centre to conference centres in London and can find you the right venue for your needs.

Author: Gladys Requina

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