As an owner of a venue renting space, how frequently have you ever heard a statement like that and wondered how accurate it might be…fantasized about it perhaps? In an ideal world, you would settle back and have (wonderfully charming) prospective clients enter your vicinity. You’d watch them tour the space, be wowed by the work you’ve done (with their jaws falling) and are eager to instantly start their event at your establishment.
And, that very well may occur.
Rather, I’d recommend you spend a substantial quantity of time learning exactly how to market an event venue. There is using a loose construct on paper; then there’s having great sales and advertising technologies in place which can be utilized by your team and fits with your business vision, mission, and price point. The illustration of the ideal world I talked above may be especially true to the big conference centre located at the heart of Melbourne city (a city with a population of over 4 million), but if you, like most of us, start out with a small space within the suburbs, you may want to read the rest of this blog post.
Fantastic achievement in venue marketing isn’t accidental. It is planned. As you build your pre-launch deadline, let yourself in with plenty of space to get to know just what you intend to do before you open, as well as your first year of performance to be certain that you get a good base in place.
The business of venue promoting is very time-consuming, and if you know the area to focus your attention on, that will be the key to your success. If you are short on funds or time, then you’ll be trying to compensate on that by getting a great deal of work done immediately. Understanding where to focus on can make you more efficient and productive, and also help you avoid expensive mistakes.
Do you know all of the free media tools that are available to you? How about the tools at your disposal in lead generation to client relationship management program? And are you up to date on how you’ll need to use social media for your site and determine the kinds of social networking channels that will give you the most return for your time and effort?
Understanding exactly what is involved with the venue business planning process, which contributes to a winning sales and marketing approach, helps you leap miles ahead of the competition. Bear in mind, having the best sales team in the city won’t matter if the venue is not adequately marketed to the general public and industry experts alike.
Individuals must know more about the venue first, and it needs to be easy to find online so that the sales team can employ their fancy sales strategies to those interested would-be customers who show up in the area. It is important to know that different places require different marketing techniques. A venue that is located at a luxury accommodation in Tasmania would be more likely to attract more formal events than, say, a venue on the second floor of a suburban pub.
You’ll have a significant leg up on the others if you currently have extensive experience in the event industry and are bringing this into the table when you begin your own venue.
If you can narrow down the style of place you want to operate, and then focus on the venues in your market which are the most likely competitors, you can better decide how much of a real opportunity exists to capture a bit of the pie. What seems to work well in your city? What gaps exist? Taking the time to really think about this can allow you to focus your attention and have the right goal in mind when you pursue your new place.
If all that seems foreign and intimidating to you, don’t worry. It’s just a matter of allowing yourself time to dig in, learn about the industry and catch up to people who may already have that knowledge easily available. One of the ways is not only by observing the most successful conference venues in Melbourne but also connecting with the people behind these venues.
You can also consider engaging an event industry consultant to assist you with a number of these pieces. You can consult your convention and visitors’ bureau (CVB) or Chamber of Commerce to see if such people exist in your area, and you can also ask both associations if they have any items that they wish they could implement for newcomers in the local venue renting market. Those two groups may be excellent referral partners in the future if they are engaged in your planning procedure.
A fast and effortless way to expand your knowledge as you’re still on your research phase is, to begin with talking to the contacts in the event business and attending the networking events they advocate. These people could be anyone. It could be a fellow event professional, a real estate agent, or it could be a specialist retail valuer that you met through one of these events. People might love it when you take their suggestions and know that you’re serious about doing your assignments. Additionally, there are countless event industry-related blogs that you may tap into supplement your in-person information gathering procedure.
Nobody will step in and do the legwork to start an event venue for you, but with people, you can count early in the procedure does make things much easier.
Who do you already know in your niche that may make a fantastic partner? With over 20 vendor categories to pick from in today’s large event instalments, you are guaranteed to find a “starting squad” that can help you out with a few basic questions and tips about how to browse from the many commercial property sales or leasing opportunities in your area.
When you consider your starting lineup, the following most natural consideration is the team —which is the venue’s operating staff members. While it might look premature to consider staff this early at the venue planning process, it might be helpful to consider the roles you’d wish to get filled either on a part or full-time foundation, and those you suspect may be a limited-duration contract role. Take examples from the job market in your local area. For example, if you are based in Hobart, look at the list of jobs commonly found within the Hobart event industry and take note of that. You will want to learn more about the descriptions for each of these jobs and consider whether they apply to your particular business plan.
You’ll also need to think about the sort of culture and environment you establish for your own team. How stringent will policies be for staff members? What type of schedule will you keep for the venue in those opening months? Using a handle on this before you begin recruiting may make locating the ideal people easier and faster, and help you find the ideal match earlier.
When you’ve considered these risk factors and you feel comfortable finding ways to lessen them, it’s time to choose the upcoming logical step to owning your event venue.
It’s time to move from your pre-planning stage to the “doing” stage. Call the real estate agent. Get your attorney, accountant and banker on the line. You’ve got a new place to start along with a vision to discuss with your city. You have got a venue company strategy to write and a brand new budget to construct, and there’s no time like the present.
You have got a new title to add to your new business card —venue owner. The only thing that will be on your way is the matter of when you would start working towards that goal.
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