Small Business Brief


Planning Pro-Tips: 10 Tips for Choosing the Best Conference Space

Did you know event planning is considered one of the most stressful jobs in the world? A lot of that stress could be overcome if the planner has the right insight on finding the perfect conference space.

Finding and choosing the right venue for your event doesn’t have to be a headache. Follow our tips below to make your venue an effortless item on your checklist. 

1. Make Accessibility a Priority

As tempting as it may be to host your event at an exotic and remote location, you want to ensure that your guests can easily access the location. This means checking that there are smooth transitions (be it by train, plane or automobile) to and from the event.

While some major events like Burning Man can get away with being hosted in the middle of nowhere, you’ll want to make your event as easy as possible to get to.

2. Be Sure Quality Lodging Is Nearby the Conference Space

In this instance, it’s important to know your audience. If your event is appealing to a younger crowd, there’s a good chance that they’ll be fine with mid-range accommodation. However, if your event is on the luxury side than it’s best to find hotels and lodging nearby that fit the bill.

You can always look into where guests stayed for past events in the area to get a better idea of options.

3. Check That There Will Be Availability

Congrats! You found the perfect accommodations. Now, you’ll want to make sure there will be availability during the time of your event. If your event is held during a peak season (such as spring break or during the holidays), then you may find local hotels tend to fill up faster.

If this is the case, you may have to pay the hotel to set a specific number of rooms aside or be sure to give enough advance notice to guests so they can book their hotel early.

4. Complement Instead of Overwhelm

There are some venues that offer unique artwork, settings, and local experiences. However, it’s important to remember that your main goal is to draw people to the event, not just the venue.

Find a venue that manages to compliment the occasion without distracting your audience. Also, try and be sure the venue is somewhat relevant to the event to keep it from becoming its own spectacle.

5. Check the Costs

Now that you’ve narrowed down some choices, you’ll want to see which of your choices are aligned with your budget. While a great venue can be the make or break of your event, you’ll still need to turn a profit.

As a general rule of thumb, 35% of your profits should go to paying for the venue. It’s important to remember there are still other costs to tend to and you want to be sure there’s still something to take home at the end of the day.

6. Know How Much Staff Will Be Needed

Those other expenses we mentioned? One of the major ones will be your staff. Which also should play a role in choosing the right conference venues. It’s important to remember that the larger the venue, the more staff members you need.

There will be more space to cover which means you’ll need more events staff to point the attendees in the right direction, staff in case of medical emergencies, and those assisting with transportation.

7. The Right Facilities

When it comes to choosing a venue, everything that already comes with your location is one less thing you’ll have to rent for your event. Which is why it’s wise to lean towards venues that come fully loaded.

Be on the lookout for event locations that include premade stages, mics, audio equipment, and even space chairs and sponsorship tents. Your entertainment may have specific requests for performing, so it’s also helpful if the venue’s facilities suit these needs as well.

8. Easy Branding

Anyone who has ever put together a major event in the past knows that great marketing is the cornerstone to success. Giving your brand notoriety and the excellent press is often the primary reason for such events to take place in the first place.

Which is why it’s great to find a venue that offers ample branding opportunities. This can be executed through well-placed signage space, elevator poster space or even an electronic marquee.

9. Be Aware of Technical Details

Strong tech support isn’t just a necessity for your team; it’s also a necessity for those attending. Multiple spaces for charging up phones is always a big added perk, as well as the ability to easily access Wi-Fi.

Some venues even have their own tech support available to attend the event and ensure that nothing goes awry with in house systems. Altogether, the tech side of your event is what will allow attendees to enjoy and share the experience.

10. Food and Drink Options

There’s something about a great event that gives attendees a case of the munchies. If your venue isn’t already equipped with food and drink options, that means you’ll have to pay out of pocket for it.

Some venues are willing to share in the profit of food and drink sales, while others will let you pay for the staffing and food ahead of time allowing you to keep the full profit. Speak to your venue host to see how food and drink are typically handled.

Creating a Successful Conference, Step by Step

Finding the right conference space is just one of the many important steps you’ll take while planning your conference. You’ll also want to take matters such as branding and budgeting into account.

If you still haven’t crafter your marketing strategy for the event, we suggest checking out our blog on creating a strong email marketing campaign.