Corporate Events

Connecting Beyond Your Event

Social media provides a powerful opportunity to connect your event and messaging beyond your guests in attendance. Social media can expand your event marketing efforts and your onsite attendee engagement. Here are some ways to make social media a part of your next event.

  1. dsc_1093Visual Focal Point – Give your attendees the perfect backdrop for their photos as well as a reminder of your event hashtag. Providing something that attendees will what to take a photo of that is branded with your logo and hashtag will increase engagement. Include your hashtag on signage branding and throughout the event.
  2. Selfie Stations – Fun and eye catching stations throughout the event with your event hashtag, quote bubbles, or emojis encourage people to snap and post there experience to social networks.
  3. Make Your Guests A Star – Moderated social media feeds displayed on screens or projected in your venue allow guests to see posts from the event and spur additional posts.
  4. Social Swag – Ensure all promotional items are branded with your hashtag and logo. Great promotional items can encourages additional social media.
  5. Good Food – Food and beverage are integral parts of your event and people love to take photos of food. Incorporate your event hashtag on napkins, glassware, or even on the food itself.
  6. Reward Your Most Active Influencers – Give away prizes for those who post from your event. You can set up a Twitter activated vending machine that dispenses items when someone posts using your hashtag.

We have a number of other ideas and tools available to connect events, marketing, messaging and engagement with attendees and social media audiences. Make your next event more impactful with our team of event and social media experts.

 

 

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Price and Value In Events

Event Planning BudgetPricing and budgets are always important when planning events. You don’t have an unlimited budget and usually one of the first questions asked of an event planner is “How much is this going to cost?”

At Pierce Events we serve three very different and distinct clients.

  1. Social event clients who are planning a private event on a limited budget.
  2. Corporate clients with larger budgets and internal and marketing goals
  3. Non-Profit clients who are looking for fund raising opportunities and a solid return on event investments

Creating a pricing structure for a variety of clients, budgets and events can be a challenge. Pricing need to work of all parties involved. Social events require a different pricing structure than corporate and non-profit events. Many social event planners charge a time based fee. Depending on the type of event a planner creates, average hourly rates vary greatly.

Corporate event planners may change a flat fee or planning and project fee based on cost and time estimates. Often we plan an event with a specific budget defined. Choices and vendors are chosen based upon the budget restrictions.

At Pierce Events, we plan and produce events from coast to coast. Our internal costs of vendors, labor and staffing varies based upon geographic location. Everything from time of the year to local tax rates can impact the cost of events.

While pricing is certainly important to most clients, choosing the lowest bidder in events is often a mistake. It’s just as important to consider value along with pricing. Spending more with an event planner or company that has experience, vendor connections and production knowledge is money well spent.

It’s important to remember that a large portion of the money paid to planners does not remain with them. From the fees we charge clients, we pay venues, vendors, equipment rental, permits and license fees among other costs.

Educated clients are often the best clients and provide for a powerful working relationship. Be sure communication is clear and your planner understands your budget and goals.

Looking Ahead – Event Trends for 2015

lookWe are often asked what’s the next big thing? Sometimes the answer depends a lot on style and taste. Chic and Elegant can be two very different things to people. Truth be told, we would rather be trend setters than followers.

Still as one year near it’s end and the next one looms in the distance, we attempt to look into our crystal ball to give our clients a few ideas to consider.

Style……

Recently we saw the reawakening of Gatsby-style glamour and we expect elements of that trend to continue with classic strings of pearls, silver, ivory, and gold accentuated with a bold pops of color, and contemporary interpretations of classic styles.

Yes the shabby chic mason jars are fading and making way for classic elegance.

Drinks……

It’s easy to overdo it when it comes to libations. I’m not talking about consumption, but sheer variety. The flavor craze has exploded. Every type of liquor now comes in flavors from Cherry to Espresso. We predict and suggest a simpler balance of cocktails of high-caliber liquors and fresh ingredients. Want a classic at your event? Talk to your bartender about adding Moscow Mules to the offering.

classic cocktails

Might we also suggest a well-made Harvey Wallbanger with Chopin Vodka, fresh-squeezed orange juice and a float of Galliano.

Food……

food trends

Work with your chef or catering director to create meals using local, seasonal, sustainable ingredients whenever possible. It opens the door to fresh and unique fare.

We also see a shift in event serving style. Opting for small bites, tray-passed appetizers and family-style dining, event and wedding reception dining is a not just about eating, but the social aspect as well. This also allows you to incorporate a larger variety of cuisine options. Keep in mind some of your guests may have to dietary restrictions of vegan, gluten free, and allergy-free offerings.

It’s your party…….

Trends are meant to give you and idea of what others are doing, but don’t become a slave to the hot new trend. If you want BBQ and Beer served in Mason Jars go for it! Trends are created by someone doing what no one else is. Be that person. It does not matter what is in or out, hip and trendy, your event should embody your personal style and taste.

Contact us if we can help you with your next event. http://www.pierceevents.net

The Entertainment Business – Entertaining Business Development

Not many people would argue that a conversation over a glass of wine in a relaxed atmosphere is much more appealing than a presentation in a conference room. Companies will often fly hundreds of people to destinations for sales meetings, education and training, all in between food, entertainment and fun. But why go to the expense and trouble? The answer is very simple. It works!

Creating an experience built around great wine, great food and great company is more powerful that any marketing piece ever dreamed of. We have the tools to help you take your business entertaining to a new level.

Entertaining should be about developing your business. Enjoyable social events are branding moments that people will long remember and always associate with you. They may just be one of the best investments you could possibly make, because every event is an opportunity to influence and impress others. Creating a memorable experience doesn’t need to bust your budget. A qualified event planner can guide you to obtain the most out of your budget.

So where do you start? First, leave the planning to the experts. It’s doesn’t matter if you are hosting a luncheon or a destination meeting, asking employees or trying to do it all yourself will create work tension and lessen the impact of the event. An expert will save you time and money and allow you to focus on your role.

What is your role? 

Be an enthusiastic host. It’s important to get the most out of your hosting role. Greet people as they arrive. Set the tone for the event.

Food and drinks can be a great business tool. Introducing guests to great wine and great food creates a wonderful atmosphere for clients and employees alike. Work with a sommelier and chef to assist in pairing wine with food and create a key experience for guests.   

Be sure to connect with your guests. If you, as the host, don’t seize the opportunity to engage with your guests the event is wasted. Don’t just talk business. Use the time to find out about people and their personal life. Knowing about a person’s children and family, their hobbies and interests creates a personal connection. Showing genuine interest in people is important even in a business relationship. Don’t just look for the most important person in the room. Make efforts to help people mingle and meet others. 

Consider giving your guests a nice take-home item. It’s way of thanking them for attending and an opportunity to have guests leave with your branded item and remember the evening.

Entertaining can be an powerful marketing and business development opportunity and give clients, prospects and even employees a positive impression of your brand and company. It’s a key step in building a strong business relationship. If you would like to talk about you next event, contact us.

Pierce Events

Spending Wisely – Planning Your Budget

Pierce Events Pittsburgh event Planning Budget

Event Planning Budget

It’s imperative that planners do the most with the least for clients.  In our planning process we represent our clients to vendors and always seek about he best values on their behalf. We never exceed a projected budget without prior approval and we must have a darn good case to present to even ask a client to amend an agreed upon budget.  In the rare event that we do seek an increased production budget a complete explanation as to why the cost overrun exists and the benefit of the additional cost is always explained to our clients.Last year some of our national events increased in production cost for several key reasons. Rising fuel costs can have a big impact on your budget. Everything from deliveries to generators to food costs go up as the price of fuel rises.

Trust is very important in the client/planner relationship. Our client know that we explore the most cost effective options for each production and clearly understand the goals of every event. Without spending wisely, our clients would not come back to us again and again. Creating a wonderful event can be accomplished while sticking to your budget.

Often times we start of with the “Cadillac Plan” and whittle it down to the “Chevy Plan”. That’s because client like to know what the event could be but needs and wants must be sorted in the budgeting process. This is true of corporate events, weddings and any other event.

Needs and Wants are not always easily identified. A want disguised as a need can reveal itself in later stages of the event planning process. You may think you need live entertainment, but space and acoustics could limit options and push that live band into the “want” column.

Often times we must eliminate unnecessary items once the event starts to come together. Often keeping a few items on the list that can be removed without a major impact on the production provides a nice buffer for your budget.

There is always more than way to get a job done. When it comes to event services, sometimes there are non-traditional options. We have used local talent, volunteers, community groups and schools to assist in everything from entertainment to marketing.

Staying within budget requires us to value good business dealings, be cognizant of the current economic climate and understand the needs of our clients.

www.pierceevents.net