Are you pulling your hair out over the stress of discovering the perfect convention center for your next big and special event? Well, you can take a deep breath as we have 5 tips for choosing the quintessential space to make your event planning stress free.
1. Recognize Your Target Audience
Before looking into which convention center to have your event at, make sure you understand your target audience. This is the first key to discovering the right event space.
It is important to know:
- Who will be attending the event? What is their age, education, race, ethnicity, occupation, income level, and marital status?
Understanding the demographic will help you figure out what your event is specifically for, as well as knowing what price to charge for tickets or to make the event free to attend.
- Where are they generally located? Also, will there be attendees coming out-of-state and internationally?
Recognizing their general location will assist you to answer which location your event should be held to maximize the number of participants to your event.
- Approximately how many people will attend the event?
Figuring out how many people will go to your event ahead of time will help you find out how big or small you want the event space to be. Based on the floor size, you can come up with what your budget would be for booking a venue.
Drawing out who your potential visitors are will help you prepare for what you’re looking for in a convention center.
2. Create a List of Features and Services you Want for Your Event
After understanding your target audience, develop a list of features and services you desire for your event. First, record as many features and services you need to have for your event.
Here are some recommended features and services:
- Audio and video rental
- Free parking
- Event planning
- Lighting setup
- Layout setup
- Event marketing
Then, rank each of them with number 1 being the most important. Finally, write out a brief explanation for your top choices. Explain why you want to have this feature or service for your convention.
With this list, look for the convention centers that offer the important features and services you need for your event.
3. Look at the Reviews of the Convention Center
Now that you made a list of potential candidates as your ideal venue, look at the reviews. There are plenty of sites to look at like Yelp, Tripadvisor, WeddingWire, Google and Facebook page reviews, and social media posts.
All you have to do is search the name of the convention center in any of these websites and read all the reviews to get a better understanding of past events people attended at that convention center. Some sites may not have as many reviews as others, so it’s always good to look into more than one website.
If the convention center has a few negative reviews but you would still like to contact them, ask them about the complications that the unsatisfied reviews addressed and observe what the venue’s response is regarding that issue.
Look into the reviews until you reach the top 3 venues you want to select from.
4. Visit the Venues Before Making a Deal
Once you’ve recorded your top 3 choices, contact the 3 convention centers and schedule an appointment to visit their facility. This is an ideal way to not only see the venue in-person but also visualize what you intend on setting up for the floor plan.
5. Prepare Questions to ask the Convention Center
While you are exploring inside the convention center, this is the ideal time to ask any questions you have about the venue. The questions you ask will depend on what you are curious about. However, if you are not sure what to say, here are some questions you can ask.
- Is the floor spacious enough to set up a variety of different types of activities and booths of various sizes?
- Is outside catering permitted?
- Will there be assistance in partnering with nearby hotels and shuttle bus services to have a place for our guests to sleep and have a ride to the event?
- Are there any restrictions?
- Is the convention center available to book on the date you want?
If you want to hold your event in Orange County, consider us as one of your choices. The Business Expo Center would be happy to help you with your future event. Click here to learn more about our services. Book with us today!