Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Event Planning - How Do You Treat Your Clients?

How do you treat your clients and customers? Do you do it right? Do you meet their expectations, do it with a smile and how do you show your appreciation? We all work for companies that try, but some do it better than others. So, today we are going to talk about going above and beyond, not just partially, not most of the way, but all the way and beyond.

Appreciation in Style - Courthouse Retrieval System showed their appreciation in the manner they do business, first class. Their brochure states "Focus on Quality. We are committed to superior customer service and we value our customer feedback." and I believe what they say. While attending a convention at the National Association of Realtors in New Orleans, they invited several of their clients to an appreciation breakfast at Brennan's Restaurant and I was fortunate enough to be invited as part of the group.

For those of you including myself that had never had the fine opportunity to dine at Brennan's, they are a fine dinning restaurant, winning many awards and that's why Courthouse Retrieval Systems decided to plan their event with them.

Greeting and Smile - what I like most from anyone taking care of me, either personally or business wise is to be greeted with a smile and that was what we got. Every time I see Sara with CRS, I get a warm welcome with a smile and a hug. Needless to say, she is warm and everyone becomes a friend. So we were met at Brennan's with a smile and that smile was extended throughout the breakfast from each server that graciously took care of all her guests. Our special greeting from Brennan's started off with a mimosa.

Reputation and Expectations - Brennan's name itself tells the story. They provide such great service and quality, that you just know you will have the right experience and we did. So, what Courthouse Retrieval Systems was trying to do was show the same kind of service, smile and effort with a restaurant like Brennan's that has a reputation to supply the same expectations time and time again.

Excellence and Entree - while Brennan's has an extensive menu, we were offered a choice of three appetizers, four entrees and two desserts that were all exquisite. My choice was New Orleans Turtle Soup, but others chose Creole Onion Soup or Strawberries with Double Cream.

I normally try and eat healthy, but the day encompassed some extra walking because it was impossible to resist the gourmet options. So, my healthy entree was "Eggs Ellen - Grilled filet of fresh salmon topped with two poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce." Most of the others at my table selected "Eggs Hussarde - Poached eggs atop Holland rusks, Canadian bacon, and Marchand de Vin sauce. Topped with Hollandaise sauce." The entrees were prepared to perfection and the quality was superb.

Customer Satisfaction and Dessert - we were perfectly happy with the service, entree, quality and smiles, then we were offered the "Icing on the Cake." In this case, Brennan's had two choices, but we went with their signature dessert "Bananas Foster - Bananas sauteed in butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and topped with banana liqueur, then flamed in rum. Served over vanilla ice cream." The motto here is to take your customer satisfaction to a higher level.

Service with Style - to all of the above, add a service staff in tuxes, an elegant New Orleans surrounding, an intimate room seating about forty guests and a never ending supply of water and hot coffee. By the way, my idea of service implies "doing" before one asks, so we never had to ask for anything. They were always replenishing coffee and water, so glasses and cups were never empty.

Thank You - Remembrance - so, while we don't always treat our clients like this every day, we can always provide the service, excellence, attitude and smiles that make our customers return. Create the atmosphere and mentality to thank your customers for their business. They will return if you treat them right.

4 Tips for Surviving With Online Event Management Solution

In the world of business, many situations crop up that can create challenges to the budget of a corporate organization. Some are beyond the control of the organization such as the falling state of the economy worldwide. However, some factors are within the reach of an organization which includes including planning and management of an event, its marketing strategies, and deciding on your sources of funding. A smart professional will always choose solutions that are easy to adapt to and work with at an affordable price.

Perhaps, an online event management solution can give you the kind of respite you are looking for. Let's find out how event organizers can survive and grow in these challenging times using an online event management solution.

Controlled Budget

Before planning an event, an individual needs to finalize the amount of money to be spent in executing all the phases and aspects to make it come together. It is also important to keep a tab on the variable sources of funding to execute the plan of action.. After you finalize the budget you can then decide on the event venue, number of invitees, venue decoration, and so on. An online event management solution can help you arrange an event within a restricted budget. With this system in place, you don't need to rent a venue because a webinar can be arranged conveniently with the attendees joining in from their respective places over the internet.

Online Registration

The registration part can be managed in a hassle-free manner, if it is transferred to the online domain. You can save printing and domestic postage expenses plus additional cost of international couriers. Online registration system is eco-friendly eliminating the need of paper usage. Additionally, you can create and publish sign up pages and choose a template that best meets with the design of your corporate website and business goals. Feel free to customize the sign up pages adding your company logo or banner.

Easy Payment Methods

There are a host of online payment methods and gateways that can be integrated with this platform. These payment modes are becoming very popular these days because of faster processing and transfer of payments via cyberspace. En-cashing checks can take up to 3 days whereas your registrants need to visit your organization in person to pay via direct cash. These processes are quite time-consuming and a way out is going the online route. Many event organizers are using online payment options (credit cards, PayPal, etc.) to accept event entry fees from would-be attendees.

Event Marketing

Many event planners fail to regulate their marketing budget because of unnecessary wastage of money on less important, promotional channels that yield no satisfactory results. Hence, you first need to complete a thorough research on the most popular and time-tested marketing channels in use let's say by your competitors. Decide your own marketing plan after giving this its due thought. Besides, printed promotional adverts on newspapers and leaflets, it is good to have an online marketing plan to have better sales results. Social media, websites, and blogs are increasingly being used to create awareness amongst people about events and push people towards registering for the same.

Public Relations Manager Jobs

Public relations manager jobs take care of the top most needs of the company. A company is a big organization with various activities. Public relations manager work is usually involved in the highest echelons of the company. While production, purchase and sales are the ground level functionaries of a company, PR manager jobs are on the highest level of company strategy.

If a mishap happens in the company and it is in fear of losing its reputation, then it is the duty of the public relations manager to make the company look the best possible. If on the other hand the company does something good, then it is again the duty of the public relations manager to make sure that everyone hears about it.

Basic Responsibilities

The main responsibilities of a professional in public relations manager employment is to make and execute such campaigns so that the organization is looked upon favorably by the public. There are many duties that a manager of public relations has to do.

He has to give interviews, write and send press releases, draft speeches, hold press conferences, oversee the charity programs run by the company and meet with various community leaders.

In fact, he is also responsible for representing the company at various social events. PR managers generally specialize in some specific area of management such as crisis management or event management.

Job Requirements

The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that companies generally prefer individuals who have done graduation or post graduation in Journalism or Public Relations. In fact, they also look for candidates who have completed their coursework in business administration, advertising or communications.

But the fact lies that in top level positions such as public relations manager jobs, people are usually promoted and not directly appointed. It can take you seven years to reach this top position. Even if you do not have a degree in public relations there is nothing to fear.

You can always start by doing an internship and learn more on the job. This kind of internship also helps you to gather practical knowledge which becomes very useful for the future. However to be a master of this field, one must have good communication and computer skills.

Working Conditions

If you are interested in PR manager careers, it would be helpful for you to know about the working conditions of this job. A PR Manager generally has to work under very stressful and fast paced environment.

In fact, a lot of these professionals also work during the night and holidays to meet deadlines. You might also have to face long work schedules and extended hours during crisis. In this kind of job, it is quite common to travel. A PR manager also will have to meet government officials, media personalities and groups with special interest throughout the country.

Job Outlook

It has been estimated that the growth of public relations manager jobs will increase by 13% in 2018. This would create around 7,300 new jobs. As the senior managers retire or leave, these high level jobs will gradually become available to other candidates from outside the company.

In spite of this, Public relations manager jobs continue to remain some of the most coveted jobs in the country.

How to Successfully Book a Celebrity For a Private Or Corporate Event

If you're organizing an event and worried that booking a celebrity to attend will invariably end up being a disastrous blunder like Katie Price's appearance in this year's I'm a Celebrity, then fear not. With some thought, planning and savvy rumor seeding, you can create real hype and intrigue around your event.

First off, you want to think about the connection between the celebrity and the event. Envision the ideal tone of your event and think about personalities that will reinforce it. If you're hoping for a social yet focused and businesslike environment, the cutting sound of Lee Evans impersonating a Chicken on stilts will probably sabotage this mood - much better to have a personality like Adrian Chiles, who you could trust to lighten proceedings without offending or going schizophrenic on your guests!

Once you've thought through some realistic options, the next step is seeing who you can land. When booking a celebrity for an event, it is possible to cold-approach the celebrity's agent. This can work if you've got connections with the relevant agents or enough experience with booking acts to know how much the service of a given celebrity is worth. The problem is most people don't and many agents are opportunists. If they sense you don't know, they can easily quote you too much, call it the standard price and say "take it or leave it". Leaving you in a position where you either pay up, or move on. Agents get so many offers; they probably won't be too heartbroken if you do move on.

The way round this is to use an established entertainment agency. A consultant working for an entertainment agency will have both the connections and leverage to properly negotiate the attendance of your desired celebrity. Aside from doing the leg-work in sourcing and hiring the best celebrity for your event, the other key advantage of using an entertainment agency is that they haves tons of experience with running events. They know what makes an event work, and can make suggestion on how to make it memorable and even work with you to turn new ideas into reality.

Lastly, once you have the celebrity booked, the temptation is to mention it at every opportunity and cover the promotional material with the celebrity's name. This can work if you're certain the celebrity's name alone will generate hype. However, it can be more effective to avoid making anything official and instead circulating a rumour. If the event you're planning is not a media/PR event, it's likely that your attendees - and guest they're likely to bring - are part of a social network. Take advantage of this! Ask a couple of 'connected' people to surreptitiously mention that they've heard X celebrity is attending. Ideally you want one person (or people, depending on the scale) whistle-blowing in person and another person to make similar noises on Twitter and Facebook. This lack of certainly will soon spread, which is good for intrigue and intrigue leads to action!

The Role of the Wedding Planner at Your Event

For a grand occasion such as a wedding, you require a lot of expertise to enable you plan, organize it. In many instances, family members, friends and associates have helped with wedding planning but there are limitations with this approach. The helpers may not be able to devote all their time to the event because they have something to do. Again, since it is not their line of business, they may not be able to obtain the best services for the benefit of the couple. This is the reason why you may need to get a wedding planner to oversee your wedding vent.

The wedding planner will save the couple a lot of headaches. He will be doing the running up and down whilst the couple take a rest towards their day. He will also be able to locate the best vendors who are reliable and proficient enough to handle the wedding. But most importantly, the consultant is able to negotiate for lower prices as he does repeat business with the vendors. A wedding coordinator knows what causes weddings to fail and can offer the couple protection against all these common occurrences. Wedding planners are also advisors. They can help the couple to choose their bridal wear, accessories and shoes.

The role of a wedding consultant in the planning of the bridal event is paramount. They are able to obtain very low prices and advise on what will work best. From years of experience they have been able to strike better relationships with vendors so they are able to offer couples low prices. The most important role that the coordinator plays is one of an organizer. He assumes a central role over all the aspects of the wedding and ensures that each vendor or service provide provides timely services and assures quality. Investing in a planner will therefore save you time, embarrassment and high cost in your wedding planning.

Toilet Rental - Planning An Outdoor Event

Whether you're planning for a small golf tournament or a major music festival, you can't afford to forget about toilet rental. Providing your guests or attendees with a place to do their business might not have been at the top of your priority list when you began planning the event, but it should rocket straight to the top of that list now. You can forget a lot of things when it comes to planning something where a lot of people will be involved with room for forgiveness. You might get some gripes here and there if there isn't enough food or if the parking situation is less than optimal. But if you don't provide enough facilities, you can guarantee yourself a disaster. Renting portable facilities doesn't need to be a hassle. Here's how to do it.

Estimate Your Needs

Your first step will be determining how many portable facilities you'll need for the event. If anything, you'll want to overestimate when it comes to this calculation. You're far better off going too far with toilet rental than erring on the minimal side of things. Figure out how many people will be attending your event. Some in the industry recommend using 1 facility per 100 people as a good rule of thumb. This is a decent starting place, but take other factors into consideration. If alcohol is being served, for instance, you should increase your estimates.

Search Local Listings

If your local phone book doesn't have a section named "toilet rental", you may have to check under event planning or similar fields. If you don't get any satisfaction from the book, check online with search engine queries that should give you the information you need. If there are businesses in your area that can help you, they should come up when you search for that type of service. If you know anyone in the event planning business, ask them who they use when it comes to larger outdoor events. You may also want to check with anyone you know in the construction business.

Start Early

The earlier you can get your toilet rental needs taken care of, the better. You don't want your own procrastination to be the reason you couldn't provide your attendees with the facilities they need to be comfortable. The further out from the date you start contacting companies, the better chance you'll have at finding someone who can accommodate you. If any one company can't meet your needs, consider renting from more than one.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Organising Corporate Events Such As Clay Pigeon Shooting in Ireland

Many organizations are increasingly opting for Ireland as the location of choice for some sorts of corporate events, especially those that require some degree of quietude - like for instance 'company away' and 'fun' days. The serenity of the Irish countryside, combined with aggressive marketing (mostly by the Irish event organizers and the authorities) have over the last few years seen Ireland emerge as a leading destination for corporate events such as company away and fund days - to an extent that entering a search term like 'corporate events Ireland' on any search engine is likely to give you scores upon scores of relevant hits, a considerable number of them being favorable reviews of Ireland as a destination for corporate events, especially those that are best done away from the work environment.

Another considerable portion of the results you get from a search term like 'corporate events Ireland' will be made up of companies that offer to organize such events for an organization on an 'as a package' basis. This way, having paid for the package, all that the company staff or team members (as may be the case) have to do is to hop onto a plane and get on with whatever corporate event is taking them to Ireland, unencumbered with intrusive thoughts about what they will eat and where they will sleep. Now this is attractive to corporate event organizers because after all, one of the aims for organizing corporate events that take place in off-site locations is to give the company members the opportunity to get away 'from it all.' And when you say that you are giving your company's people the opportunity to 'get away from it all', and then you encumber them with concerns about where they will sleep and what they will have to eat, then far from getting them away 'from it all', you are actually getting them 'into it all.'

The beauty of taking corporate events to Ireland is that the Irish countryside, which is normally the setting for such events, offers participants the opportunity to engage in activities they have never engaged in before - like for instance clay pidgeon shooting - a popular pastime in rural Ireland. Engaging in activities like clay pidgeon shooting, which will almost inevitably be a completely new activity for anyone who has never been to Ireland will make whatever corporate event in question is to be remain etched in memory of the participant. Now getting a corporate event - like a team building event for instance - etched into the memory of the participant is one of the things that the event organizers in the company yearn for. This is because it such deeply etched memories which make people come to feel a part of the 'company family.' This is because when all is said and done, what makes you feel a part of your natural family, the family you were born into is nothing more than memories you have of the times you spend together and the experiences you had with that natural family. If people are to feel part of the 'company family' then, there is need to create for them indelible events in their minds for them to 'show for it.'

Custom Printed Backpacks

Custom printed backpacks are used in various occasions, events and purpose. The backpacks are used by school going children, high school students, university students and corporate events. The backpack comes in different designs and sizes for various purposes. The bags vary in color from a single color to multiple colors. The backpacks are made of various materials such as nylon and polyester. Companies can use the message printed on them to market their various products or services.

Corporate, non-governmental institutions and even educational institutional can promote their products and services by using the custom printed backpacks. The organizations can use the rucksack as advertisement space bearing the corporate logos and messages. A learning institution may provide knapsack bearing the institution logo and address. This way the kids and students can promote their institutions.

Companies the world over are looking for ways to increase their brand awareness. Custom printed backpacks are a superb way to increase brand consciousness. The company's logo and addresses can be printed in on the rucksack creating the brand affinity. Since the bags will be used for a long time the publicity will last as long as the bag is being used.

Custom printed backpacks are used by people of all ages and social standing. The rucksacks are used by kindergarten children, high school, tertiary colleges and university students. The rucksacks are also used in sporting events and other social gatherings. With such a wide base of users then the printed bags are an ideal marketing tool. The printed messages can be spread far and wide to the target audience.

Sporting events such as high school games are events where the custom printed backpacks are used greatly. These events represent a good avenue for the various organizations and institutions to display their corporate brands. A company may sponsor some sporting events and give rucksacks bearing their brand identity. This publicity will go a long way in promoting the company and providing an effective way to market their product and service.

The custom printed backpacks vary in design and sizes. The bags designs are based on the purpose of the usage. Rucksacks for kindergarten children are smaller in sizes while those for college students are larger. Companies dealing in various products may choose the design that best promotes their products. Companies dealing with mineral water may choose a rucksack that has water bottle compartments. A computer company may have the brand name printed on the backpack designed to carry the laptop.

Companies may have custom printed backpacks bearing their corporate colors. This allows the companies to choose the colors that reflect their corporate identity. The organization can have backpacks bearing their logos and messages. The choice of color enhances the corporate image with some organizations identified with some colors.

The custom printed backpacks are very effective way to promote the company products and services. The backs offer the advantage in that they are durable and the message can be spread for a long time. The bags can be branded with the corporate colors and logos using screen printing technology. The rucksacks are used by people of all ages and social standing making it an ideal way to market the company products and services.

Establishing Yourself in Event Management

Event management is a rewarding and high paced career perfect for driven people who like to be challenged. Coordinating staff, finding a location and managing events is the dream job and ideal situation for someone who is extroverted and full of high energy. One of the most important things to remember when establishing yourself in the event management industry is to set yourself apart from the competition. You want potential clients to feel your energy and commitment to producing and running a well organized event. It is indispensable that you look polished and like an event planner; nobody wants to hire an unkempt and disorganized person to organize their party or big event. Invest in a professional and sleek wardrobe that will emphasize your responsibility and motivation to take charge. In this industry, looks do matter.

One of the next things to plan is where you want to start and house your new business. You will need to incorporate yourself into the local business world by advertising and word of mouth. Network as much as possible attend conferences, pass out business cards. You need to do anything you can do to get your name known. Once you have been contacted to plan an upcoming event it will be extremely important that your execution is flawless. One mistake and your business could be on the line. You want to ensure that you have confident and capable staff and that your venue is without any problems prior to the date. Always have a back-up plan should anything happen. You never know when a pipe may burst or the weather will turn bad!

If all goes according to plan, your first event as a professional should go off without a hitch. It is extremely important to remain calm and organized under any problem that may arise. If your staff thinks you are not able to handle a situation, they will feed off of your energy and either exploit it or only add to the frenzy. Always remember that any problem can be fixed or altered. This is when a "Plan B" should come into play. This is not to say that a situation will arise with each event. However, it is wise to be in control and no that if a crisis arises that it can easily be diverted.

No matter where you plan to start your event management business make sure that there is an available market in event management. Manchester, for example, is great town to start a business and it is good way to get your foot in the door of this competitive industry. If you start in medium sized cities like Manchester and have a successful business then this will help you get to the big leagues of London. The goal is to provide consistent and well run events so that your reputation builds in event management. Manchester, or similar cities, can help you establish your company and future rise to the top.

Successful Event Planning

Successful Atlanta event planning starts by determining exactly what you need. Knowing how many people will be attending the event is a crucial piece of information. Sometimes that number is limited by the space you have available. And sometimes you're renting the space according to the number of people who will be attending. If you know there's a limit that can be helpful. At least you'll know that the size of the group can't go beyond a certain number.

Atlanta event planning is a little bit simpler when you know suddenly an extra hundred people won't show up. So if you're planning according to the size of a room, it's already going to be a little bit easier for you and you can breathe a sigh of relief. If the event is outside where the number of people could vary greatly, try to be sure to limit the amount of people who can attend anyway. Know the cap because no one can plan for any number of people; there has to be a limit.

Work very hard at your Atlanta affair planning to make sure there is a limit on the number of people who might show up. And then contact an Atlanta event rental company to help you with details like video equipment, audio equipment and various equipment for presentations.

Whether you're planning on showing a movie outdoors, making a sales pitch or holding a conference, having the right technology at your fingertips can make the difference between a successful event and one that isn't what you'd hoped.

A good Atlanta event rental company can look at your event and help you decide what kind of equipment you'll need. If you're going to use an LCD projector, for instance, they're not all created equal. A small projector might not be powerful enough for huge crowd in a large room. The most powerful LCD projector that an Atlanta event rental company has available might be too much for your event.

While good Atlanta event planning means having enough of everything for the group, it also involves not having too much. Companies don't like to waste money. If your group is for 50 people and you rent the largest and most complex audiovisual equipment available, you may be overpaying by hundreds of dollars. While the event may be successful and everyone may be happy, the numbers are going to make someone dissatisfied with your event planning.

Use the expertise and experience of a good Atlanta event rental company to help you get the right equipment, which means it's not too small or too big. They can suggest the equipment you need for the types of presentations you'll be giving, and they can help you with your Atlanta event planning in another way, too.

The best companies deliver the equipment for you, set it up carefully, test it and then show you how to use it. Companies like this know that no matter how much time you spend on your Atlanta event planning, if you get great equipment and don't know how to use it, you might as well not have rented the equipment at all.

5 Insider Tips For Maximizing Online Event Ticket Sales With Promo Codes

With the right timing, and a little know how, advance sale promotional codes for event ticketing can put a steady stream of revenue in your pocket months before your event begins. As setup manager at a top online ticketing company, I have worked with hundreds of show producers over the past decade and have seen the exciting direction promotional code marketing has taken in recent years. Here are 5 tips event producers can use to improve event ticketing sales through promotional code discounts.

1. Know Your Tools- Promotional codes (also known as promo codes or coupon codes) trigger a price discount on selected tickets when entered during an order; understanding how, when and where to set these codes up will influence your overall effectiveness. It's critical to have the ability to create your own promo codes, at any time. A good online ticketing provider should have these tools built into a system that is user friendly and intuitive, enabling you to maximize marketing efforts as the opportunities arise.

Using the reporting features within your system to monitor the usage of a specific code and the total revenue it generates is also essential. By having access to this information, you can fine tune your marketing, even while your event is taking place. Be sure to request training from your online ticketing support team or web developer if you are unclear on how to use the promotional code tools within your system.

2. Use the Media & Track your Results- Promotional codes were made for the media! A promo code can be assigned to a specific print ad, commercial, radio spot, or partner website. Promo codes in the media can be exceptional at reeling in pre-sales and measuring your success with the networks, stations or publications you invest in. A catchy advertisement with your web address clearly stated, accompanied by a simple promo code, is sure to maximize results. Create codes that are easy to remember; use the TV or radio station's call sign or choose a simple word that is related to the campaign. Words are easier to remember than numbers. Most media ad campaigns are launched at least one month prior to the event and should be more aggressive at least two weeks out.

3. Phase out Paper Coupons & Build a Bigger Database- Many of our clients have gradually replaced their paper coupons in favor of online promotional codes. They run similar print ads but replace the clip-able coupon area with a clear referral to their website along with the promotional code. This will motivate the customer to buy online and receive the best available price while eliminating any hassles associated with redeeming paper coupons. By moving more people online, show producers build a stronger database for future marketing campaigns. This is valuable data including name, email, address and more, which could not be captured from a customer using cash at the door with a paper coupon.

4. Consider Deeper Discounts Earlier- Most ticket sales reports show a natural bell curve as opening day approaches because most people tend to buy online at the last minute. An early start on your promotional code campaign can help balance out this phenomenon putting more revenue in your pocket weeks before your event. It is best to start your deepest discounts as early as possible and gradually minimize the savings as your event nears. Frequency plays a large role in the success of an early campaign. Having a consistent "rollout" of codes released at carefully planned dates and times will keep you on the minds of your faithful followers. Organized promo code management is essential to aligning your codes with an early marketing campaign. Seek tools which give you direct access to create and manage your own promo codes with options to set expiration dates and usage limits. Try running one day promotions with the message, "Only 100 codes available, order now!" or "Order now, offer expires this Friday at 11:59PM!"

5. Social Networking & Newsletters - Get Your Message Read- Many show producers are seeing the positive impact social networking and newsletter communication can have on their event's popularity. For those with limited marketing budgets, these are essential. Since promotional codes are easily posted, emailed and distributed with relatively no cost, they lend themselves well to the social networking audience. Hit your social networking markets as soon as your tickets go on sale. Try targeting certain groups such as friends, fans, followers and last year's attendees, giving them the "first opportunity to save" and rewarding them for their loyalty. Post a special discount link on your event page or use the bulletin features to get the word out. Messaging such as, "Use this code before it's too late!" and "$5 off for our loyal followers who buy before August 1st" are great ways to encourage sales.

An email announcement should also be sent once you begin selling tickets online. Customers will be more likely to open your email and make an order if your title includes discount messaging such as, "Tickets on Sale Now, Advance Discount Code Inside!" Be sure to make your email short and easy to read, with clickable links that drive them directly to your online ticket sales page. Options for links which have the promo code prefilled streamline the event ticketing process and help track your campaigns.

5 Tips To Planning A Corporate Holiday Party

One of the best times of the year are around the holidays. Of course, with the holidays comes corporate holiday parties. Every corporation wants to ensure that theirs is the best and lots of fun for the employees. However, there are employees that think corporate parties are boring. So some corporate planning is challenging, as you want to make sure everyone has a blast.

To plan a corporate holiday party, we suggest hiring a caterer for the food and drinks at a minimum. This is the best way to ensure success. A caterer can ensure that there is enough food for everyone and that there is a variety. If you are looking for a turnkey program, look for a corporate party planning company. They will manage not only the food, but also all the other elements of the party experience.

One thing to consider is whether or not to allow alcoholic beverages. The employees can bring in their own, if allowed. Serving alcohol can be costly. Or you can ban alcoholic beverages altogether, especially if on company property. Sometimes, people think that they will have more fun with alcohol, but that is not the case. Alcohol consumption at corporate parties should be carefully considered since alcohol can create awkward moments and we will see our co workers back in the office on Monday morning.

The entertainment is very important, as you want to ensure that everyone has lots of fun. It is best to hire a dj or band. Either one of these are good choices. A dj may offer more of an assortment of music. However, there are bands that can play more than one genre. Music should be an array of genre, so that there is something suiting for every one's taste. One additional option is to hire local talent. Some of the top companies are always staying up on the current music trends and will have a local group that can perform. In today's musical landscape with Rap, country and pop, finding a good band can be a challenge.

Other ideas for a successful corporate holiday party Tampa is prizes. Everyone loves to win something. If the company doesn't want to spend a lot of money on prizes, use things like time off from work. It can be something like, leave one hour early one day or come in one hour late one day. There are many things that can be offered regarding time off.

Remember it is a party, so you want to ensure everyone has a good time. Planning a Tampa holiday party that is successful is something that can be done easily. Make sure that you do not wait until the last-minute to plan the party. Allow for yourself more time, which will make your party more fun and successful. Some companies have lots of availability and the companies that have a great track record, fill up their calendar very quickly. So book ahead and follow these great tips.

Monday, August 5, 2013

What to Look for in a Limousine Company Beyond the Price

There are many occasions in our lives that hiring a limousine can improve. Once you've decided that you'd like to hire a limo, for whatever reason, you may notice that a lot of hired car companies have relatively close rates, which may make the decision more difficult. What else should you consider to narrow down the selection?

Extras! Extras!

The magical ride to and from your special occasion can dictate the overall evening. Depending on the number of people and the reason, the difference between companies usually comes down to the little extras.

Most limousine companies offer a wide variety of vehicle styles ranging from a traditional classic design to elaborate stretch Hummers and Escalades. With a large group, look for a service that offers a party bus or a specified tour around the area you will be staying.

If you have a group that loves music, make sure you can provide your own soundtrack. If there will be children, find out about DVD availability. Concessions are another perk area to consider. Is there a complimentary bar, and what is it stocked with? Make sure the refreshments and snacks will be enjoyed by everyone.

Learn About Their Company

Know the company you will be dealing with. How long have they been in business? How long have they been at their current location? What are their requirements to be a chauffeur? What is their safety protocol?

Thanks to the internet, reading reviews from previous customers can provide insight into the experience you will have. Pay attention to comments made about punctuality, chauffeur conduct, condition of the vehicle, and the overall encounter they had. Make sure you look at a multitude of websites and sources for your reviews. Look at how long ago the comment was made and if they seem to be biased in any way. Is the website affiliated with the business, a competitor or completely separate?

Don't neglect to ask the company for references and follow through with contacting them. A company's choice in references (or lack thereof) can be very telling. When you get in touch with the references, be sure to ask the important questions to understand what your experience will be like.

Insurance Coverage

No one wants to think about the worst, but planning ahead can save your experience. Confirm the limousine company you choose has insurance coverage that fits your needs and requirements. Inquire on the process that takes place in the event of an accident. What type of compensation is offered during and after the incident?

Hidden Fees

While the flat rates among limousine services are similar, added fees and charges can drastically alter the total of the bill. Cleanliness of limo after use, mini bar consumption, and mileage are often factors that can modify the cost. Investigate every possible stipulation that may possibly increase the price, and have the company detail these items before you sign.

Greening Your Hotel Meetings and Conferences - Green is For Go

Does your hotel offer meeting and/or conference space? Have you noticed a trend in the RFP's you receive from groups, asking about your "green" or "sustainable" initiatives? All signs are pointing in the direction of a widespread increase in this trend.

Even with the current recession, business meetings in the United States alone constitute an amazing $175 billion industry, and Americans make more than 400 million long-distance business trips each year. Don't let your hotel miss an opportunity to garner its share of group business.

Despite a global recession, investment levels in energy efficiency have remained strong, according to the Energy Efficiency Indicator (EEI) released June 3, 2010 by Johnson Controls (NYSE: JCI). As stated in this report, the primary motivation driving sustainable investments is cost savings, with 97% of respondents identifying it as significant. Or, as stated by Dennis Quaintance, CEO of Proximity Hotels (the first platinum LEED certified hotel), "It ain't sustainable to go broke."

What is a "Green Meeting"?

The Convention Industry Council (CIC) presented this definition: "A green meeting or event incorporates environmental considerations to minimize its negative impact on the environment." There are almost a limitless number of ways to green a meeting - and many of these offer opportunities to save money and increase efficiency.

Event planners will look at numerous aspects of your hotel's efforts toward sustainability, including such areas as:

繚 Food and Beverage: Do you maximize the use of reusable, rather than disposable glassware, flatware, tablecloths, etc?

繚 Registration and Exhibitions: Do you use electronic communication over paper as often as possible? Do you encourage exhibitors to do the same?

繚 Location: Do you offer shuttle service or mass transit? Are areas of interest and entertainment nearby in order to decrease vehicle emissions?

繚 Do you have an energy and water use conservation program currently in place?

Why are Green Meetings becoming more Prevalent?

There are many reasons that this green trend is growing exponentially across the globe. Consumers and businesses are becoming much more aware of their "carbon footprint" and as more companies feel the pressure to create sustainability goals, they increasingly are asking their employees to stay in green-certified hotels. Companies that are closely scrutinized by the public sector (government agencies, for example) do not want to present a mixed message to the public - stating they want to help the planet, but ignoring a hotel's approach to sustainability when planning for a company meeting. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, an amazing 93,000 federal employees are traveling on any given business day to 8,000 locations across the country. Federal travelers alone use 24 million room nights of hotel space in the United States annually. Now add to this number businesses both large and small who are making efforts toward sustainability, and the totals can be staggering.

Are Green Meetings an Example of "Greenwashing"?

When a product or building (such as a hotel) extols its virtues of being "green", but does so in a misleading or exaggerated way, it is described as "greenwashing". That can be a difficult label to shed, as guests and/or groups may feel as though they've been misled, or worse. Many green standards are in their infancy and thus still ill-defined.. There is no need to try to fool meeting and event planners, as many of them are looking for some effort toward sustainability, and will be happy with the progress you've made so far and the goals you have set. Much like social media, it is important to be transparent.

Green meetings can have a tremendous impact on our environment. Most hotels purchase more products in one week than 100 families typically purchase in a year. By initiating green goals such as recycling, reducing and reusing, you can feel good that you are helping the environment in a big way, helping your revenue stream, and reducing many of your operating costs.

Who Supports Green Meetings?

Depending on where your hotel(s) are located on the globe, various government, for-profit and non-profit organizations are jumping in to assist and encourage hoteliers to go green. There is a plethora of information available to help you (some excellent web-sites are posted for you at the bottom of this publication), and the number of green experts available for consulting or commissioning grows every month.

It has been through such collaborations that some hotel brands are now "pre-certifying" a few of their prototypes. For example, Marriott has launched such a prototype for their Courtyard Hotels. By taking advantage of "volume certification" or "portfolio certification", Marriott may be able to save property owners approximately $100,000 in design and other costs, and about six months in design time. More prototype brands are expected to follow.

As Michael Kawecki, LEED AP, GA and owner of Axiom Sustainable Consulting, LLC states, "with volume certification, each credit is documented based on regions, and then further documentation is provided during construction. For example, rather than energy modeling each store, a prototype is modeled in each climate area, and then that model is good for all future stores." It is obvious how this type of certification could save a significant amount of work for hotel owners, and flow into their group meeting venues.

Hyatt Hotels is also making numerous green initiatives. Jim Milkovich, corporate vice president of purchasing for Hyatt Hotels Corp. explains that Hyatt has won group business to its convention hotels in part because of its green initiatives. In an interview with Beth Kormanik of Buyer Interactive, Milkovich states, "If you can show a meeting planner how you are reducing, recycling and reusing products throughout the hotel and how your associates are engaged in the process - it's not something you're doing for this meeting, but it's in your culture - that is what is really evident to those meeting planners."

A terrific example of how a hotel has monetized and calculates an ROI for their green meetings is the Willard InterContinental Washington, D.C. As Herve′ Houdre′, GM of the Willard InterContinental states in, "The hotel carefully tracks its individual and guestroom bookings that result directly from its sustainable practices. I gave myself and my team a goal to generate $1 million in extra revenue (in 2009) due to

our sustainable development strategy. Guests are impressed with the development strategy because they believe the strategy corresponds with their own culture."

Keep in mind that prospective clients won't know what your hotel is doing to limit its impact on the environment if you don't tell them. "Don't be shy," advises hotel consultant Daniel Edward Craig. "Advertise your green initiatives on your website and in sales kits, proposals, your in-room directory and social media activities. Meeting planners and travelers want to know."

What is the Future of Green Meetings for Hoteliers?

The landscape is changing quickly. In the United States, the meetings industry is working closely with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to develop a green meeting industry standard. With such standards, hotels will have common goals to reach to win group or convention business. Because the EPA is a government-based organization, and the green meeting planning associations are not, such joint efforts are rare and cannot be ignored.

What Groups Can Help My Hotel With Green Meeting Initiatives?

There are a growing number of organizations eager to help hoteliers with sustainability and green meeting initiatives. The following limited list does not address the numerous and qualified private enterprise consultants:

Green Meeting Industry Council:
Meeting Professionals International (MPI):
International Association of Convention and Visitors Bureaus (IACVB):
The Coalition for Environmentally Responsible Economies (CERES) - Green Hotel Initiative: 617.247.0700 X 21

"Green" Hotels Association:

NW Pollution Prevention Resource Center (PPRC) - Hospitality Sector
Green Seal - Environmental Standard for Lodging Properties
Hotel Association of Canada - Green Leaf Eco-Rating Program
U.S. Green Building Council

Is there a cost to "going green" for your hotel and group or conference meetings? Yes. Is there a larger cost involved in ignoring the trend? Absolutely. Don't allow your hotel to languish in meeting sales. Get educated on "green", and pencil out the numbers. Or let an expert guide you. You will be surprised and delighted to learn -

Green is for Go.

穢 Ridgeline Hospitality, LLC 2010
By Dr. Diana Driscoll

Reflexology Event Checklist

For Conferences, Corporate Events and Health Fairs

When building a reflexology practice, events are a great way to hone your skills and build your client base.

Offer your wonderful reflexology skills at a Conference, a Corporate Event or a Health Fair.

There are plenty of people at the event who will want your service, but you'll be wasting time if you don't plan ahead.

Early in my career, I did lots of these events, and I still have a handful of clients who have come to see me ever since.

It took me a lot of trial and error before I came up with the checklist I'm going to share with you here. If you forget any of these items, you do so at your own peril.

I gathered all the materials I needed and kept them in a "kit" by my door.

When the phone would ring, I'd just need to know the time and location. And, then when I was about to leave for the event, I'd grab my case knowing that I hadn't forgotten anything.

First, you need to talk to the event organizers to find out what they want you to do, whether it's: 10 minute, 15 minute or 30 minute (etc.) sessions. Find out how long you'll be working that day and then divide the session minutes by the length of the day and that's the maximum number of sessions you can do.

Rest up the night before, it might be a long day.

Here's my fail-safe "event check list":

1. Fill a small pump bottle with your favorite lotion - no need to take the jumbo size - unless you're working on a small army.

2. Take a set of rubber or latex gloves - the kind you can get at the drugstore - and put as many pairs as you think you'll have sessions. You'll need the gloves if there's no hand washing facilities nearby. There will always be a bathroom, but sometimes it's so far away, you won't have time for a hand washing break between each guest.

3. Have hand sanitizer in your pack. There are times when you'll want to use it, so have a small bottle ready.

4. Bring your business cards! Oh, how many times did I go without them? Too many. And, I would kick myself all the way home. You can print your own with on "Avery Business Card" paper (you can buy at any office supply store like Staples). Or, you can go to and get 250 business cards for free. Just make sure you order these at least a week in advance... rush orders costly.

5. Have a sign in sheet. This is maybe the most important thing you pack! You want people to sign in so that, with permission, you can contact them. How do you get permission? Ask them. Tell them to call you if they have any questions or tell them "I'll give you a call or send you a card with some reflexology follow up information... if that's okay?"

6. Have some tissues and/or paper towels handy. You never know when you'll need to clean up a lotion spill, or remove some "sock bunnies" from the toes, or blow your nose. You might even offer a tissue to your client if your fabulous "sinus magic" techniques produce the desired effects.

7. Have a pillow-board or a small "boogie-board" (the small version of the kind of foam board you use for floating in the swimming pool). You'll need something to put over your knees - to support the feet - unless you want to lug a big table or chair there and back.

8. Carry a clip board and some pens. Make it easy for them to give you their contact information or for you to gather notes for your memoirs.

9. Have your schedule ready for additional sessions. It's always easier to book the next session at the end of the last one, rather than wait for a call. (And remember, now's the time to tell them what your cancellation policy is).

10. Don't forget to bring some gift certificates. One year I did more business with gift certificates than with follow-ups. Mention the next significant holiday...

Reflexology at Conferences and Events opens doors of opportunity, helps you get more publicity and don't forget to bring gift certificates for people to buy for the holidays - the perfect client gift. Not to mention that you'll be bringing reflexology and holistic health further into the world.

Wendy Coad 2008.

What Exactly Does an Event Planner Do? You'd Be Surprised

I often get asked about event planning jobs and what exactly does a planner do. It's very hard to give a short answer. While it's obvious that they plan events, however, when you look at all of the tasks that are required you realize that planners have no easy job.

An Event Planner Wears Many Hats

There are different skill sets required for an event planners job. Which characteristic is required depends on which stage that they are at with their client. For example, when meeting with their client in hopes to win that piece of business, communication skills are being used. You see you only get one chance to make a first impression.

Characteristics that an event planner requires are:

Communication. As I stated above when you are trying to win a clients business, it's important that your verbal and written communications are impeccable. This is your sales pitch so to speak. You will also be required to provide a written proposal to your client.

Fiscal Management. This is when an event or party planner needs to know their math. Quite often their clients will state their budget for a particular event. The event planner's job is to create or plan an event all while working within the set budget.

Negotiation Skills. An event planner works with many suppliers. And quite often they are required to negotiate on their client's behalf. Anyone who's been involved with negotiations knows that this is an art. Negotiation isn't a "my way or highway" attitude (some of our politicians could take note here). Rather negotiation is the ability to reach a compromise where both sides feel that they accomplish some of what they had set out to achieve.

Decision-Making Skills. The job is not for those who cannot make decisions. Event planners are called upon often to make on the spot decisions that can have a dramatic affect on the event itself.

Leadership. Again a "my way or the highway" approach does not work well here. Leadership is a quality that, when displayed properly, makes people want to work for you. A good leader knows how to correctly motivate their teams to achieve the desired results. In my experiences, I have found that the leadership trait is one of the hardest to develop in someone.

Organizational Skills. Boy does an event planner need to be organized. Think of them as you would a director in a movie. It's their responsibility to make sure that all of the suppliers are doing their specific roles so that the overall event is running seamlessly. The words "organized chaos" would be a good way of describing what's going on for an event planner during the event itself.

Event Planning Certification Is Very Instrumental for Career Development

PCMA (Professional Convention Management Association) recently published a study showing that an event planner that was certified makes considerable amount more than someone that was not certified. And, judging by the characteristics required above, it's no wonder that certification is the way to go. An event planners job requires a variety of characteristics. It always amazes me that they are doing all of this as part of their day-to-day routine and so many do it with a huge smile. For those I say their job is really their passion.

Visit my blog, PlanAnEvent, for more event planning articles.

Three Rules for Planning a Great Company Picnic

Although not all companies celebrate their employees' hard work, a few companies take the time and often the thanks will take the form of an annual company picnic. And while larger companies may hire somebody outside of the office to plan and essentially put on the picnic, many smaller companies will plan their picnics in-house to save on costs. Saving money is all well and good, but planning a large company picnic based on the schedules of a large number of employees is not necessarily easy. So you will want to use whatever tips available to get it done right and throw a great picnic.

Of course, the easy way out would be to hire an outside service to do most of the work. But planning a picnic can actually be quite fun and you do not want to miss out on that. And as long as you follow three simple rules, you will have no trouble planning a great company picnic that everyone will truly enjoy.

1. Plan Early - As with any sort of social event of this magnitude, it is extremely important to begin planning early for a number of reasons. For one thing, you want to be sure you can book the place where you want to have your company picnic. If there are only a few choices, they may fill up fast. In addition, you want to be sure your employees have enough time to make plans to go to the company picnic and with busy lifestyles this can be difficult.

Setting the date, booking the venue, and getting the ball rolling early in the planning process will mean less stress in the end. And less stress will mean you may actually get to enjoy the picnic too.

2. Be Diverse - The picnic you plan should be as diverse as the people who work for you. There is a fairly good possibility your employees enjoy a wide range of activities, food, and entertainment. So you should take this into consideration when planning your picnic. After all, your company picnic is a way to show your employees your appreciation. So you do not want to leave anyone out.

You may want to have people give you suggestions directly or even send around a survey to find out what kinds of things people like. Whatever you do, be sure to have a little something for everyone and nothing that will offend anyone and you should be fine.

3. Use Conferencing - It may be beneficial if you put together a sort of focus group to help you plan, and you can easily communicate with those individuals with a conference calling program. Your focus group can help you iron out all the details for the picnic and can discuss them with you through conferencing.

The best part is conferencing programs can be downloaded from the internet at no cost to you, not something you can say about the rest of the plans for your company picnic. Download your conference calling program in advance, and you will be ready to go with a conference call at the drop of a hat.

Company picnics are supposed to be fun, but only after all the planning is taken care of. But if you plan early, plan right, and communicate with others through conferencing, you will be able to enjoy your company picnic and so will your employees.

Event Planner Career: How to Become an Event Coordinator

What does it really mean to be an event planner? If you thrive on organization, are proficient at multi-tasking, and enjoy a creative work environment, perhaps event coordination is the profession for you. In our interview with event planner Jessica Alpert, she discusses the wide range of opportunities in managing events, offers career advice, explains how she broke into the industry through informational interviewing, and stresses the importance of an event planning internship.

Diversity is the Watchword

The world of event planning is an extremely diverse industry. You can represent a piece of real estate such as a hotel ballroom, a convention center, a private room in a restaurant, or independent event space. Alternatively, you can work at an event management company that consults with clients to plan special events, or work in-house at a company that holds many events and needs someone to plan and manage them.

Fortunately, you do not need a degree in event management to start a career in the industry. Jessica, who majored in psychology at UC Davis, explains that a variety of educational backgrounds can prepare you to become an event coordinator. She says, "a major is a major and I feel like I could have focused on anything from communications to fine arts and I would have been fine." While a college degree is not necessarily required she emphasizes that it helps in being taken seriously when job hunting.

Network, Network, Network

Jessica also stresses the importance of the informational interview, noting this type of networking is what led to her first job. She recalls, "in meeting with all these people I learned what I did and did not want in a job...I was interviewing them just as much as they were interviewing me." This networking definitely paid off, because when one person did not have an opening they would say, "'I don't have anything available, but I have a friend who works [here] who might know somebody.'"

Jessica also recommends an event planning internship to help you understand the industry. Even though these may not be the most glamorous jobs, the behind-the-scenes experience is invaluable..."I truly believe that in order to understand how to hire a caterer you need to work for a catering company, and you need to see the behind-the-scenes look of it." Not only will you gain a better understanding of the different aspects of managing events, you are able to make an impression with vendors so they think of you when hearing about job openings.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Top 6 Advantages of Using Secure Online Payment Management Solution for Your Events

Whether you are running a "Fortune 500 Company" or a small business, the online payment management solution lets you collect payments, settle transactions, handle refunds, and manage chargeback in the most effective way. Besides, this online solution offers easy credit card processing for any type of events (conferences, meetings, seminars, business dinners, and more). Thus, the online payment management software makes it easy for you to collect money for your fundraisers or similar other programs.

The top 6 advantages of adhering to a web-based payment management solution are given below:

No Hidden Cost Involved

Managing your monetary transactions with payment management software is an extremely cost-effective procedure. To use this online payment management solution, you don't need to pay any extra money!

Accept Different Forms of Payment

This Cloud-based solution enables you to accept payments via credit cards, such as MasterCard, Visa, Discover, American Express, and so on. You can even allow your attendees to send you cash via different popular payment gateways, such as VeriSign, PayPal Payflow Pro, PayPal Express, CyberSource, and

Easy Credit Card Processing

Credit card processing can be made easy by using the Cloud-based payment management solution. Your event attendees can send you donations as well as registration fees in real time by simply using their credit cards. Easy credit card processing benefits both the parties - event planners can quickly receive money, while the registrants can easily send you ticket prices, registration fees, and donations.

Offers Easy and Secure Ways to Send and Receive Money

This PCI-compliant solution is highly secure, as it eliminates the chance of any form of financial fraud. Hence, your hard-earned money gets transferred to the organizer quite safely. The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is formed to make sure all organizations that "process, store, or transmit credit card information maintain a secure environment."

Offers Merchant Accounting Service

Event organizers can utilize "Use Your Own Merchant Account" (UYOMA) service for gathering online credit card payments through their own online merchant account. The UYOMA service lets you effortlessly generate, activate, and uphold your own merchant accounts. When an event organizer uses this service, it means potential participants can deposit the required fees to the user's account at their convenience. The UYOMA service also allows organizers to easily process cancellations and refunds, when needed.

Manages All Back-end Administrative Payment Functions

The payment management software will help you make changes to your different events ticket price, category, and such other features. You can also easily prepare a range of online reports concerning ticket sales, total amount of registration fees collected, payments reconciliation, and so on.

Ten Reasons to Choose Horse Racing for Your Corporate Hospitality Event

Horse Racing is a fabulous sport to take your clients to, and we are pleased to include the top ten reasons why you should take your clients to these events instead of any others. These are as follows;

  1. Takes the Pressure of you as the host: Horse Racing is a more relaxed way to entertain your clients. If you go to the football or rugby, you are with your client for three hours solid before kick off and however entertaining they are, conversation can dry up! With races taking place every half hour, clients are constantly up and around, putting bets on and watching the racing from different vantage points, which makes entertaining so much smoother and more enjoyable.

  2. Dressing Up: Horse Racing is generally a smart event and allows clients to wear their best clothes, including giving the ladies a chance to buy a new dress and hat! With football and rugby becoming more relaxed these days, in that many corporate areas allow jeans, it is refreshing for clients to see a really smart, formal event.

  3. Ladies Involvement: Horse Racing is a great event for both genders. Football and rugby are very male orientated, where as horse racing is enjoyed by both sexes. This is therefore a great opportunity for clients to entertain their female customers and also customers and their wives. For some clients, they have more chance to attend an event if their wife or girlfriend is invited as well!

  4. Locations: There are racecourses located all around the UK from Newton Abbot in Devon, to Folkestone in Kent and up to Perth in Scotland. With 60 racecourses around the UK, there is always going to be one in close proximity to your business or clients.

  5. Every Day of the Week: If you need to choose a race meeting for a particular date, perhaps you have a client coming from a far, or you need to combine it with an important business meeting, you will generally find a race meeting happening on most days of the year.

  6. All Year Round: Most sports are seasonally based, with football and rugby in the winter and cricket and tennis in the summer. Horse Racing is fantastic for corporate hospitality in that it runs all year round, from January to December.

  7. Meetings Beforehand: With most horse racing meetings starting at around 2pm, this is a superb time to allow for a business meeting beforehand. The majority of racecourses have corporate boxes where you can stage a business meeting or seminar in the morning around 10am, before having lunch at 12.30pm, before enjoying a full race meeting in the afternoon.

  8. Betting: All courses have licensed betting facilities on site, where your clients can enjoy a flutter on their favourite horse. All corporate facilities generally have betting facilities within them, meaning that you don't have to queue up with the masses to put on a bet.

  9. Offerings to Clients on Day: You can choose a corporate package that will best suit your clients on the day. For the high end clients, you can choose a more formal three course meal, where as for middle to lower corporate clients, you can choose a fork or a finger buffet. You can choose the option that will best suit your budget and clients.

  10. Add on options: There are a variety of additional options at race meetings that you can choose to enhance your day or impress your client further. These could be as follows;

    • Present a trophy to the winning trainer

    • Present a trophy for the best kept horse

    • View a race from the commentary box

    • A racing tipster to come to your box and inform your clients about the racing line up

    • A sporting celebrity to join your party for the day

Ideas to Organize Corporate Events

A special day of course needs special arrangement which includes perfect decoration, delicious menu and provision of entertainment. It requires proper planning to make each thing perfect such that the guests in the party can have moments to cherish forever.

If you are planning to throw a corporate party, then you must be thinking about the best possible ways to make a fantastic party. Besides offering fun-filled atmosphere to employees, corporate events are a way to symbolize the position of the company. By organizing events, you can break the monotony of daily working routine and also can strengthen business relationships with business partners.

Are you thinking of various ways to make your event successful? Here's a short list that won't disappoint you for organizing corporate events:

• Party Venue: For organizing a corporate party, you can consider choosing a venue that has separate sitting arrangement, a platform for live performance, a dining area and other areas for entertaining activities. Along with that, you must leave some space to move around as everyone doesn't like to occupy one seat for the whole party.

• Decoration: After making a selection of the venue, the next thing to consider is the decoration. In order to give elegant look to the corporate event, you can consider decorating the venue with flowers, ribbons and candles. Besides these, lighting arrangement is the major thing to concern. For flawless lighting, you can seek assistance from companies which provide high-quality electronic lighting equipment on rent.

• Food: Be sure to have quality catering services that have provision of variety of cuisines including soft and hard drinks. You can try the food before you finalize the caterer for your event.

• Entertainment: To make the corporate party interesting, you can think about entertainment activities such as discotheque, magic shows, orchestra, dance floor etc. The entertaining aura in the party will help your employees to experience a change from the routine life.

Organizing corporate events need lots of planning. In order to have your party arranged in a comfortable manner, you can think about contacting professional event planners of your area as they have experience in organizing parties for business, wedding &special events in the best manner. They can also suggest you variety of ideas to make the event an extra-ordinary one. So, get in touch with reliable and experienced party organizers located near your area and start planning to make the event special for everyone.

Event Planning Software

These packages are designed to help you stay organized throughout the party planning process. You can create checklists so that you do not forget anything you need to do. Many event planning packages allow you to create budgets so that can keep track of expenses. Once your budget is created, you can then enter expenses as you go so that you know where you are cost wise.

You can create your guest lists and keep track of RSVP's. This is a useful tool so that you have a head count ongoing when planning food, beverages, etc. You can also use the list to follow up with guests who have not responded to the RSVP request.

Some party software allows you the convenience of sending invitations online. There are message boards where you can post online information about the party and communicate with your guests.

Some of the fancier packages offer lots of party tips and tricks that can help you with ideas for party themes and menu planning. They offer information on party resources such as decorations and party favors.

The checklist creator feature many of these products have will help you create complete lists so you do not forget anything. You might have an activity on the list to make an initial appointment with the caterer, and another activity to remind you closer to party date to contact him or her to make sure everything is on track as planned.

After you use the planning tools to plan your menu, the party theme, the decorations, and the party details, you can then use that information to create shopping lists to use for buying items for the party. If your event is one that requires seating arrangements, you can use these tools to help you plan and create the ideal seating layout.

Menu planning is made much easier using event software. Once your menu is created, you can create a checklist so you can organize which foods can be prepared ahead of time and which foods cannot.

Planning a party is stressful enough as it is. Utilizing resourceful tools like event planning software can make your job so much easier. You're less likely to forget things by planning with these tools, and that will make for a well planned, fun party for everyone.

Be the Appreciating Host of the Luxurious Corporate Events

Nowadays, event management is highly essential for successful planning efforts for the contemporary professionals meetings and conferences. Online event management software and event planning tools have very smartly presented and organized multiple business conferences, projects and corporate meeting venues. Your corporate events are easily handled and managed by the event management company so you can totally rely on their bespoke services.

If you are really interested in a new kind of luxury event, hiring the event management company would prove to be the best option for you because this is the only platform where you will find everything beyond your expectation and recognition. The corporate events are the most sensitive and of course the impressive part of any company since it directly effects the growth and functionality of the company and its employees. Therefore a great amount of care and attention is demanding in this respect.

An event management company being professional will take every single care of every requirements and will turn your corporate event into a mind-blowing affair, the impact it will have on your invitees and co-workers will amaze you. Whether you are hosting your get together locally want to have your luxury event on any part of the world, you will find them placidly waiting to offer you bespoke services as only the best service provider offer global event management.

Now you must be thinking of their outstanding services, right? We must tell you that these companies have many dedicated and hard working members which together bring great results from, performing at optimum levels to deliver only the best. Right from reserving to managing they are the experts and the time frame they use are miraculously impressive which will surely lessen the burdens on you.

For any kind of event, a venue plays a platform which can be arranged perfectly according to the theme of the events. We know that a corporate event can come in any size depending upon the related market, theme and purpose of the company, which they thoroughly understand and make arrangements accordingly. The event management company can also prepare invitations and welcome the guests with great hospitality. Since they maintain contacts with the necessitated agencies therefore you can surely rely on them for the arrangements, decorations, lighting, stage setting, catering and beverages; and much more.

If you want to surprise your guest with some stunning entertainment, an event manager can provide you with various options. Since, it is the same event planner that will make arrangements for you. If by any matter of chance your event will face any kind of interruption, these planners can easily handle it without bothering you and you can enjoy your event without even knowing about it.

Consequently, you can totally trust on them and the only function you will have to perform is to enjoy your corporate events without any anxiety and worries. Now the only work remained from your side is to search the superfine event management company that you will find at major search engines. Pick the best out of the choices available that will typically match your requirements and approach them. We are very sure they will not let you down and you will find a great memorable luxury event.

A Beginners Guide to Event Planning Certification

Up until recently, event planning, although a very promising career stream, was not considered as a very concrete or profitable career path. Volunteers and committees used to organise special events and paid only a few people involved. Such events were mostly taken care of by the marketing department or the administrative wings.

So, there was never a formal training for events. Most people learnt it on the job, by getting into the grind and gained practical knowledge. Slowly more and more companies have learnt the value of a professional and well-organised event and appreciated the quality of it. The industry is still sprouting but these days almost all good and well-known companies have their event planning teams in place. The work of organising events is mostly outsourced to a firm, an agency or an individual with the appropriate skills and qualifications. Such agencies and individuals hold an expertise in organising professional events and corporate shows.

Event Planning Certification

Appropriate certifications leverage the growth and path of an event planner and can provide greater opportunities for those looking for more desirable and higher paying job opportunities. Gaining qualifications and experience can help potential event planners to learn the basics of event planning extremely well. The main advantage of gaining admission in event planning certification programs is that one gets the opportunity to interact with those that are experienced in the industry, as well as allowing you to interact with fellow students, where ideas can be shared and tricks of the trade can be learnt.

As an event planner, one gets handsome remuneration along with a sense of job satisfaction. Being an event planner can involve lots of fun and entertainment, but it also demands shouldering many responsibilities and dealing with problems that may arise. An event planner starts gaining respect in the industry when they have successfully completed a variety of different events to their clients satisfaction, and word of mouth will play a great role in drumming up future business.

A lot of event planning certification programs are currently present in the market and students pursue them after their graduations. These certifications can surely be useful for those who are looking for a long-term career in this field and wish to get to the top position fast.

What Does an Event Planner Do?

There is a wide genre of events that an event planner has to organise. There are corporate conferences, exhibitions, large scale events, shows, Weddings, seminars and so on. Each time an event is planned, people look for some new additions in terms of elements and creative ideas. Right from arranging drinking water for the invitees to the final good bye, an event planner has to think of all the small elements involved. They also need to be ready for the worst and most unexpected situations that can arise at the venue on the day of the event. Crisis management is also one branch where it is imperative to gain additional expertise. Besides this, one needs to have presence of mind, effective communication and great interpersonal skills, to make the event a big success. They should be of an outgoing personality and have respect for the deadlines set.

Many event planners start their career by taking up any job in order to gain experience and set up their own firm later on. The self-employed event managers earn better than the employed ones.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Use Secure Online Payments for Quick Business Transactions

Majority of firms worldwide are using the online payments system for money transactions due to several reasons. This procedure does not involve the use of paper and hence, is environment friendly. Besides, it also helps to do away with the problems of creating reports and maintaining accounts every day.

Internet shoppers find the online payments system highly beneficial. They can purchase different kinds of goods online to facilitate their needs and desires. Secure payments over the computer enable people to shop 24 hours. Besides, the online stores also remain open for doing business, 365 days a year.

The online payment management solution enables:

Anytime Access of the Payment Portal

The payments portal can be accessed anytime, 24x7 from any part of the world. Besides, the fund transfer can also be done immediately.

Speedy Credit Card Processing

All major credit cards, such as Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover, can be easily processed using this web-based solution, thus making payment easy and fast.

Payment Security

Security breach is rampant worldwide. For this reason, it is of vital importance to protect your bank account details. The web-based payments services take good care of your bank details so that it does not fall into wrong hands. The PCI-compliant fund transferring solution helps you meet all your business requirements in the safest possible manner.

Easy Recurring Payment Management

The Cloud-based payment managing system supports recurring orders for memberships, subscriptions, and more, regardless of the gateway used. You can receive and manage recurring payments of all types, monthly and annually, through credit cards, PayPal, and other standard payment gateways.

Hassle-free Refund

Organizers can submit refunds, amend orders, process credits, and complete transfers through this online payment management service. It displays organizer's own payment instructions and refund policy and also assists with the processing of refund and chargeback requests.

Email Notifications

Event planners will get notifications through emails as and when any financial transaction takes place. In case of a trade show, the organizers will get emails whenever someone registers and buys tickets.

Check Processing

The Cloud-based payment management solution enables you to use your checking account to make payments online. Paying checks over the internet reduces your billing cost. E-check check processing also lets you deposit funds faster than its paper-based counterpart.

Thus, the online payment transactions can be used over the traditional mode of pen and paper work to reduce considerable time and cost. Indeed, the Cloud-based fund management solution will help you manage your accounts and funds in more professional and cost-effective way.

Joomla Web Development: A New Trend in Open Source Content Management System

Today Joomla is one of the most popular open source Content management system used by users worldwide. Joomla was established on August 17, 2005 by the development team of Miro International Private Ltd. It's multiple language option has made it popular among users from different continents. Joomla enables user to create website and applications with ease. It has a friendly URL it allows image resizing and has server page language, template language and WYSIWYG Editor. It is freely available for everyone.

Joomla is a user-friendly web development which is easy to install and create website with minimum downloadable time and allows the user to manage the website themselves. If a user wants to extend the basic functions of a Joomla site then it is possible as it is highly extensible freely available under the General Public License (GPL). There are over 8600 free and commercial extensions available from Joomla directory and other sources. Now if you want to customize your website with extra extensions, then it is freely available.

Joomla allows user to publish content on worldwide web and intranet, its web application framework can be used independently. Joomla is based on PHP and stores data in MySQL database thereby allowing you to build a powerful application which can be shared by anyone.

Joomla has some basic module given below:-

  1. Inventory control system

  2. Data reporting tools

  3. Application bridges

  4. Custom product catalogs

  5. Integrated e-commerce systems

  6. Complex business directories

  7. Reservation systems

  8. Communication tools

  9. Image and multimedia galleries

  10. Forums and chat software

Joomla has some basic features like page catching, RSS feed, printable version of pages, new flashes blogs, polls, search and support language internationalization.

Apart from these features Joomla has some built-in applications which are listed below:-

  1. Blog

  2. Chat (free add-on)

  3. Search Engine

  4. Contact Management

  5. Database reports

  6. Document management

  7. Event management

  8. Web services front end

  9. Link management project tracking

  10. Project tracking

The first official version of Joomla was released on September 16, 2005 i.e. 1.0. Next version was 1.5 which was released on January 22, 2008, Joomla 1.6 was released on January 10, 2011 and Joomla 1.7 was released on July 19, 2011. The latest stable version available in the market is 2.5.2 released on March 6, 2012. Joomla web development services are hired for corporate website portals, Real Estate websites, Government applications, online commerce, corporate intranets, personal or family homepages, magazines/newspapers and many others.

Joomla is an award-winning free open source CMS which tried and tested and known for its usability, functionality and robustness. It provides user full control over content management of the websites. Its website design supports multiple users which mean different users can work at the same time. Joomla's content management system meets all SEO requirements and its HTML layout is well-formed and easy to read.

The Right Event Planner For You

Are you planning for an important corporate event but can't seem to get anywhere? Well, all you need are a few event management tips and a good event planner. The first one, event management tips, can be found anywhere-online or offline. The second, a good occasion planner, takes a bit of effort to find. Obviously, a corporate event is a very significant occasion, and sometimes no amount of occasion management tips can guarantee success. That's why you're going to need all the help you can get.

An event planner is a professional who provides services in planning and implementing all the essential aspects of an event or occasion. As such, an occasion planner is in charge of handling the operational matters of a planned event as well as the necessary logistical preparations. Event planners actually go beyond simply planning for an affair or simply giving out event management tips. They are, in fact, closely involved in carrying out the actual event.

In the business world, corporate events and functions are key concerns especially for marketing and administrative purposes. For example, product launchings are important items in many marketing strategies. Another corporate event, the shareholders' conference, is essential for overall structuring of the company itself. There are many other corporate events that help the business grow and reach new levels.

With the above things in mind, it becomes clear why you need to leave the managing of an event to a professional. You have to find and hire the services of an occasion planner that best suits for your particular situation. You might want to consider the following qualities before deciding.

Among the first things you need to look for in an occasion planner are his/her experience and specialty. An important qualification that a good event planner holds is the level of experience. Needless to say you're not planning to leave the outcome of your corporate event in the hands of an amateur. Moreover, you have to make sure that a particular event planner's specialty matches your needs and situation. Hiring someone who has successfully handled a similar function to your event is advisable.

Another factor to consider is the planner's style and approach to event management. Event planners use a variety of tools and techniques to plan and execute an event. What you're looking for is a professional who truly understands your strategies and reasons for holding the event. You have to choose someone who provides a systematic and dynamic method of working towards your goal, rather than someone who simply gives you static occasion management tips and tools.

Overall, event management is both an art and a science. The professional you choose to help you out in your upcoming event should have both the creative and technical know-how that you need. Remember, the success of your event depends on the choices you make on event management tips and event planners.

How to Plan a Scavenger Hunt Birthday Party for Adults

If you have never participated in one, you may wonder how to plan a scavenger hunt birthday party for adult guests? The age of the guests allows the planner to create an event that is not limited to one location. Planning a memorable birthday party requires three simple steps:

1. Choose a location

2. Determine the type of scavenger hunt

3. Create the list

Complete these steps and the rest of the party will almost plan itself.

Choose a Location

Scavenger hunts are a great activity because they can be done almost anywhere. If the party is being held at home the participants can work the neighborhood or nearby areas. If there are enough drivers attending a larger area such as a 5 mile radius can be included in the allowable search area. If the event is being held at a restaurant or other location use the surrounding area as an acceptable search location. Often there is an area where many restaurants, clubs or entertainment venues are within walking distance. This is an excellent place to have a scavenger hunt for adults. They can wander around to find the items on the list and return to a designated location within the time limit set to claim their prize.

Determine the Type of Scavenger Hunt

Not all scavenger hunts are the same. Some require individuals to gather specific items, others may require photos of items or a signature of a person who meets a specific criteria. When choosing the style of scavenger hunt consider the location. Some places, such as an art museum, may not allow photos to be taken while. Other places, such as a mall, don't want people grabbing things without paying for them. Be creative and require participants to gather signatures of people who meet a specific criteria.

Create the List of Items

The list of items should be between 7 and 12 things. This will take participants about 45 minutes to an hour to locate all of the items. When possible use a theme for the list and the party for example here is a list of 10 items for a 50th birthday party theme:

1. A Happy Birthday sign

2. A 50 mph speed limit sign

3. 50 balloons (this works if there is a party store nearby)

4. A birthday cake ( can be found at a bakery, grocery store or party store)

5. A 50th birthday card

6. 50 different kinds of pop (the pop aisle at a grocery store)

7. 5 gold rings

8. Size 0 shoes

9. McDonalds sign 50 billion served

10. Number 50 displayed on a computer screen or media device

This list works for an area that has a department store, grocery store, and party store close together.

It is important to be creative when making a list. Brainstorm around the theme first and then narrow the choices down by what is easy to find in the chosen location.

Follow these three simple steps to plan a scavenger hunt birthday party for adults and the party will be long remembered as a fun event. Hosting a scavenger hunt has the added benefit of providing common ground for conversation at a party where not everyone knows each other.

Event Planning Template: Steps to a Successful Event

If you are organizing a business event, working with an event planning template proves to be very useful. A basic event planning checklist will make sure you don't miss anything important, and will help you use your energy most efficiently by focusing on the things that really matter.

Simply take the below event planning template, type the answers right behind the questions, and you stay on top of business event.

What, Where, When - The name of your event, date, time and location.

Desired Audience - Who do you want to reach? Want kind of reaction would you like from them? How will you keep their interest?

Your Message - What message do you want to bring across through your event? What should be on the mind of the participants after they've gone home?

Your Goals - How many people would you like to attend the event? How much funds would you like to raise?

Assessing the Risks - What are dangers and weaknesses related to your event? How would people be held off from participating or donating money? What is your answer to that?

The Budget - How much does the whole thing cost and how are you going to finance it?

Invitations - Will you send out invitations directly to your target audience, and which ones? Think of your newsletter, direct mail, etc.

Advertising - Which means of advertising will you use to let your target audience know about your event? Think of free publicity (press releases), radio, newsletters published by others, social media, and other means of communication.

Registration - Should people register for this event or not? Is entrance free, and if not, how will they pay? Will attendees wear name tags?

Catering - What foods or drinks will be available for the attendees? How and when will you present them? Have you arranged the logistics (tables and chairs etc.)?
Program - Who will be the speakers or other special guests at your event? How is the event structured? Do you need any audio or visual equipment?

Freebies for Guests - Will attendees receive gifts when attending the event? Think of a special offer which is valid only on this event, discounts, free samples, etc. You can even run a contest with prizes, if only you make sure the winner is decided on the basis of his skills, or you may have a (possibly illegal) lottery.

Keep It Safe - What is the security situation around your event? How will you ensure everything is in good order?

Staff - Do you need to hire extra staff for this event? Who will meet and greet guests?

Take-Down - When and how will the event be dismantled?

Feedback - If the event went well, you will have made the right impression on your target audience. How will you check if this was the case? Think of a way to take comments from the attendees, and consider sending them a thank you note for the participation.

When you follow the above event planning template, you will effectively determine the purpose and outcome of your business event and you will have solidified your connections with your target audience.

Event Planning - a Strategic Overview

Good planning and preparation is the key to any successful event. However, ensuring that you have attended to every detail can be exhausting and it is very easy to overlook something which may adversely affect your event outcome. Planning an event can be stressful at the best of times if you are not organised, but when we are talking about large scale events, like a wedding or business conference, it can become overwhelming. It is therefore essential that you, as the event organiser, have planned all the steps needed before embarking upon action. If unforeseen events occur, then the plan can be modified to take account of this. The point is, that you have thought about each step needed in the event planning process.

It is possible to hire professional services to plan events such as weddings and parties. If you are an extremely busy person and can afford it, than employing a professional may be the way to go. However, if the budget won't stretch or you would just like the challenge and satisfaction that comes with planning a successful event yourself, then there are some simple pieces of advice that you can follow to help you succeed.

Start by listing al the things that will need to be done to bring your event to fruition. It is a good idea to show the list to others to see if they can think of anything that you may have missed. It is vital that everything is written down. Any lists, plans, schedules, etc. should not remain in your head. The pressures of day to day life make this unreliable. They must be written down. Put the tasks on your list into a step by step plan. Schedule a date/time and deadline for each task and ensure that your overall timescale is realistic and will allow you time to seek alternative courses of action if needed. This is very important, as many people try to carry out their event plan in too short a timescale, leaving them no room to manoeuvre if things go wrong.

Keep tabs on your list and as each step is completed, check it off so you always know what has been done and what remains to be done. If the course of events dictate new or alternative actions, then add them to the list and your step by step plan. Always stay current with your master list/plan. This way you will remain in strategic control of your event planning. If you delegate a task, make sure that the person responsible is clear about what outcome is expected and has a deadline to work to. Ask them to inform you immediately if problems occur. It is probably a good idea also to check politely on progress from time to time, offering help if needed. Make sure that invitations are sent out in plenty of time for people to make their arrangements to attend. These days life is very busy and no event can be a success without guests.

Think carefully of the needs of your guests and how you will gather this information. Examples of needs you will need to consider are dietary needs and access facilities. Taking care of these at the planning stage will help your event to be an successful and enjoyable one.

Lastly, remember to build time into your event to allow you to socialise with your guests and enjoy the occasion. After all the hard work of event planning you will certainly deserve it! Planning an event can be demanding, but with careful planning and organisation it can be extremely satisfying. Knowing that a successful and enjoyable event is down to your efforts will make all the work that went on beforehand time well spent.