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Sarah Russo3 years ago

Top tips for making conference planning a breeze

Planning a smooth running conference can take a lot of work—but it doesn't have to be a complicated process. Our easy how-to guide will take you through the basics for organising a successful conference. If you are already planning a conference, check out our function and venue hire finds in Port Macquarie.

Determine WHY You Are Planning A Conference

Before you start planning any conference, you will need to determine why you are holding a conference.

Here are some common reasons to hold a conference:

  • To boost revenue.
  • To raise awareness.
  • To inform a large audience.
  • To secure new clients.
  • To get publicity.

Once you have established the reasons for holding a conference, set an end goal you wish to achieve. Whether it’s signing people up to your eNewsletter, boosting sales and awareness of a product, make sure your goal is achievable.


Set a Budget

Create two levels to your budget.


Fixed Costs: Establish how much items such as venue hire, speakers and equipment will cost in order to determine how much you can spend.


Variable Costs: These costs may change if the number of attendee’s increase. Variable costs include food, gift packs, and name badges.

When you have determined your overall budget, allow a small amount for hidden or unexpected costs, such as weekend fees, taxes or going over hire time.


Sponsorship: To potentially cut your costs, contact local businesses to offer sponsorship in trade of products or services.

Budget


Lock in Guest Speakers

Before you advertise your conference, find speakers who are experienced in the topic selected, and ensure they are able to attend. The bigger the name, the more reach your conference marketing will get.

Place their names on any advertising material to gain people’s interest, and offer a limited amount of meet and greet opportunities. This can help to increase revenue, as well as raise awareness for your conference.

Guest Speaker


Determining Attendance Numbers

To determine exact numbers, set-up an eRegistration. This will help you to keep track of people attending, as well as allowing you to email them event offers and reminders leading up to the conference.

For an estimated number of attendees, research recent conferences with a similar topic and see how many people came along.

Conference Attendees


Top Things to Consider When Selecting a Venue

Location: Select a venue with a few different sizes of conference rooms. This will give you the option to upgrade if more people register than expected. It is also a good idea to hold your conference in a hotel so you can offer a block of discount rooms to out-of-town attendees.


Inclusions: Most venues will offer inclusions such as equipment hire and catering. Negotiate a good price and ensure ALL costs are in the contract, to avoid any unexpected fees.

Conference Room


Final Details

Confirm All Details: Make the time to call your venue, any hire companies and each guest speaker to confirm all details are finalised.


Send Out Reminders: Send a reminder email to your attendees one week from the conference date. Follow-up with another the day before. This is important to do to ensure people don’t forget your event is coming up.


Final Changes to Program: The week before the conference, finalise the schedule for the event. Email a copy of the program to all guest speakers, hire companies and people involved in the running of the conference—this will ensure smooth operation.

Time Schedule


If you are planning a conference, check out this great Port Macquarie conference and function venue.


El Paso Motor Inn

Contact: (02) 6583 1944
Address: 29 Clarence Street, Port Macquarie NSW 2444

If you are looking for a relaxing venue for your next event, look no further than the Waterfront Restaurant at El Paso Motor Inn.

Services include:

  • Corporate customers have access to office facilities.
  • Personalised conferences and weddings for up to 150 people.
  • 4 hours north of Sydney, 6 hours south of Brisbane

Corporate customers at the El Paso Motor Inn receive free local and national phone calls, free 24-hour Internet, a free upgrade to a Hastings Deluxe room, and access to photocopying and fax facilities. Contact the team at the El Paso Motor Inn to organise your next conference or event.

Planning ahead? The Westport Club in Port Macquarie is undertaking $13 million worth of renovations on their event centre, which is closed until July 2016.


Planning ahead? The Westport Club in Port Macquarie is undertaking $13 million worth of renovations on their event centre, which is set to reopen in July 2016.


Westport Club

Contact: (02) 6583 1499
Address: 25 Buller Street, Port Macquarie NSW 2444

The stylish event centre at the Westport Club caters to a range of events including intimate parties, grand weddings and corporate events.

Services include:

  • Conferences, events & catering.
  • Bowls club.
  • Dining and member rewards.

Allow the event coordinator and chefs at the Westport Club to exceed all your expectations and create a memorable conference or event for your guests. Awarded ‘Club of the Year’ in 2010 and 2012, the Westport Club is the perfect place for your next Port Macquarie function.


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