Choosing an event company is often one of the most important steps you will take when planning a corporate event. The event industry has greatly matured over the past decade, and many more event management companies are in the market. While this certainly provides a larger selection to choose from, it can also cause confusion when trying to find the perfect fit for your event.
Unfortunately, many business professionals get caught up in whether or not an experienced event management company is better, or a more youthful and trendy approach would be the right direction.
The good news is that there is a solution. Companies with experience are an obvious choice because they’ve got proof of success. However, a company with experience that also knows how to take a trendy and more modern approach might just be the company you are looking for.
HOW DO YOU KNOW? When looking for the perfect event planners, you will want to find the company that perfectly mixes experience and youth. Some qualities to look for include:
1) Success in years – While you don’t always want to judge companies by the amount of years they have been in business, you are just fine judging them by the amount of years they have had success. Time and experience do not guarantee success. This is why it is essential to do your research and see how many years the company has experienced success in relation to how many years they have been in business. For example, an event company that has been in business for 20 years, but has only produced two or three successful campaigns, is probably not your best bet. Take a company with the opposite: two years in business with 20 successful campaigns. That is a company worth looking into for your event. That is a company with success in their years.
2) Modern knowledge – In many situations, new companies don’t really have the knowledge to get their ideas up and running. On the other hand, experienced companies might be stuck in their old ways. A company that comes to the table with new ideas, is willing to execute them, and has the knowledge and resources to do so is a sure sign of a qualified event planner. Do a little research to see what technology they have used in recent projects. Compare their technology with other companies' technologies to see if they truly are using the latest and greatest in modern technology. If you have a modern idea, check to see if they will have the resources to make it happen!
3) Confidence in their ability – Nobody likes working with someone who doesn’t have confidence, and the same is true when working with an event company. If they don’t have the confidence to jump right in and put on a successful event, you should not hire them! Physical youth often means energy, but does not always mean confidence. Experience often means resources, but does not always mean confidence. With the proper combination of both youth and experience, you are bound to find the right outcome of confidence. Simply speaking to a representative is a great way to see how convinced they are in their own abilities.
4) Personalization – Any good event company will allow you to personalize your event. After all, it is your event, and you do have specific ideas and messages that set you apart. You want to hire a youthful yet experienced company that understands the importance of this. You want to hire someone that listens to your goals, tailors them, and creates a strategy directly related to them. Never let a company push you into settling for less. If they want your business, they need to provide the resources, equipment, personnel, and expertise that it takes to get it done to your expectations.
So what do you think you’ll choose? Experience? Youthful and trendy? The truth lies in a company that has enough experience to be successful, but an open-minded enough to provide a young, new look at the industry.
When you’ve found that event company, you know you can count on them to help you create an event that will keep your audience impressed for years!
Jeff Kirk serves as chief operating officer for Corporate Magic Inc., a Dallas-based event production and message development company specializing in one-of-a-kind projects. Known as an innovative marketing strategist with a keen understanding of the role digital content and technology can play in building brand preference, Jeff brings nearly two decades of experience to his leadership role at Corporate Magic. In addition to managing the company’s day-to-day operations, Jeff is in the process of forming strategic alliances and recently spearheaded Corporate Magic’s entry into global markets.
In mid-2015, the Dallas-based company will be producing the Salvation Army's 150th International Congress at London's O2 Arena. Over his nearly 20 year career, his clients have included IBM, Accor, Aflac, Suzuki, JCPenney, Jaguar, Mazda, Land Rover/Range Rover, M&M Mars, Prudential Real Estate, Berkshire Hathaway, Chevrolet, Coca-Cola, Club Corp, Ford New Holland, Dallas Cowboys, GSD&M, Boy Scouts of America, Xango, YMCA, Sherwin-Williams, Uncle Ben's, Southland Corporation, George W. Bush Foundation, Rite Aid, Salvation Army, Ramada, Quaker State, Pizza Hut, Proctor & Gamble, Nike, NCR, Kraft, Kawasaki, Bayer, Campbell's Soup, Coors, Wendy's, FTD, Tournament of Roses and Republican National Convention Host Committee (Tampa 2012).