Tuesday, February 16, 2010

What Happened in Vegas… (a.k.a. The Triumphs and Tribulations of Throwing A Successful Client Event)

We just returned from SURFACES 2010 where we executed a major event for Pergo and its retail partners. The good news is the event was a huge success! It also was a reminder that when it comes to special events, inevitably something will not go as planned. With that in mind, I thought this would be an apropos time to share some special event survival tips I’ve learned through the years:

Tip #1: Good is in the Details

When it comes to events, success or failure is a direct result of the details. Before going into any event situation, it is crucial to make sure that every “i” is dotted and “t” crossed... that every “what if” has been answered and that your “A Game” has a Plan B – just in case. The better prepared you are for the worst, the more likely you are to deliver the best!

Tip#2: Expect the Unexpected

While proper planning is crucial to a successful event, equally important is the ability to think on your feet when something goes wrong – and something will always go wrong. In the case of the Pergo event, we encountered just a few small hiccups, like too-short hotel extension cords and reserved tickets that could only be picked up by the credit card holder (who was back in Chicago). The secret to success is maintaining composure and reacting quickly, quietly and calmly when thrown an unexpected curve ball.

Tip #3: Where There’s A VIP, There’s A Way

When it comes to VIPs, “no” is rarely an option. So, when asked by our client to find tickets to a sold out concert in Las Vegas for one of their VIPs, we were literally faced with the impossible. Undeterred, we hit the concierge desk, got on the phone, and successfully tracked down the sought after tickets. Good client service means not taking “no” for an answer, finding new avenues and going the extra mile to deliver the best possible results.

Tip #4: Don’t Skimp Where it Counts

At any type of special event, there is typically one key thing the guests are coming to see or experience. It could be the food, the venue, a guest speaker or performer. Whatever it may be, do not underestimate the importance of this focal point of your event and, by all means, don’t hold back when it comes to delivering quality. Case in point was our choice of Daniel Negreanu to headline the “Go All In with Pergo” event. While he was at the pricier end of our options, this four-time World Series of Poker Champion brought just the right mix of celebrity and charisma and proved the perfect personality to bring the room and our theme to life while treating Pergo’s guests to an evening they won’t soon forget.

Tip #5: All’s Well That Ends Well

At the end of the day – or the end of the event – success or failure will be written on the faces of your client and their guests. If the end result is positive, odds are no one will remember the little glitches that may have happened along the way. So, don’t get hung up on minor mishaps. Instead, learn from mistakes, celebrate successes, and pat yourself on the back for surviving yet another eventful experience!

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