January 2019

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Let’s Talk About Production Budgets: Demystifying The Money Conversation ​

Let’s Talk About Production Budgets

I think we can all agree about one thing to start with: talking money makes people uncomfortable. While some large corporations have unlimited budgets, we find that many event professionals aren’t sure how to talk turkey when it comes to production budgets. This conversation becomes even more difficult when it comes to weddings or private parties.

Unfortunately, budget discussions are one of the most vital communications you’ll have with your production team. Because we believe comfort breeds honesty, we want to demystify the situation and help you feel free to express yourself.

The bottom line is that we want to work with you. We want to provide you with awesome services at a price that fits your constraints. Furthermore, we’re realistic and know that there is only so much that you can stretch your budget to fit your dreams.

While we can’t always meet in the middle, that’s our goal. Don’t be afraid to negotiate and tell us what you need! To that end, let’s get into some detail.

Production Budgets: I’m On A Tight Budget

These words don’t poison our relationship. Instead, they’re extremely important! The sooner we know the parameters of your budget, the quicker we can get you a meaningful initial quote. If you’re looking for whatever you can squeeze out of your strained wallet, something in the middle of the price scale, or a sky is the limit premium experience, just tell your vendor!

Production Budgets: Initial Budgets And Negotiations

We’ve experienced a lot of clients who run for the hills as soon as they see an initial quote and that makes us sad for both us and you! We create our first quote with the information you give us and if we’ve missed the mark by a huge margin, just tell us.

There is usually some wiggle room in the quote. For instance, we can work with you to remove some equipment to bring the price down for you. There are also sometimes seasonal discounts available. First-time customer and non-profit discounts are also something we can explore.

The important thing is to communicate openly and directly. It’s unrealistic to assume everyone will be blissfully happy with the first quote. That’s just a starting point and opportunity to target our services to what you need.

Production Budgets: Being Clear And Direct Is Nice

Sometimes it doesn’t feel nice to bluntly ask for exactly what you want, but it saves everyone time! We won’t take offense and neither should any vendor worth their salt. For instance, telling your vendor that you need a ‘sound system’ is quite different than specifically saying you need 4 speakers and 2 subwoofers.

The better you can articulate what you want, the more accurate the quote will be. If you’re not sure, then ask the vendor about different options. Most vendors will be happy to provide different packages at different price points.

Production Budgets: Embrace Modular Quotes

A modular quote is a web page where you can select or deselect items to update the quoted price in real time. Professional vendors will be able to provide you with a high tech quote that gives YOU the ability to control the pricing and item selection in your quote.

Production Budgets: Be Realistic

Don’t be surprised if things are expensive! Bear in mind that vendors have to provide trucks, staff, insurance, maintain equipment and do many other things to support your event besides just showing up with a couple of speakers. Make sure to get several quotes from a few vendors so you can get an idea of the price and market.

Production Budgets: You Get What You Pay For

To expand on the point above, quality work will cost more money! Usually the cheapest quote is not going to be the best – or even satisfactory. We usually advise our clients to aim somewhere in the middle. The lowest priced quote will often be unreliable equipment, staff and other headaches that will make your event a pain to manage.

Good, high-quality companies will charge a little bit more but you’ll see the payoff in their professionalism, charm, and your event’s success. It’s usually worth it to invest a little bit more in a high-quality vendor! Maybe, by communicating with them, you can shave off some corners and still arrive at a price everyone feels good about.

Production Budgets: We’re On Your Side!

We hope this short article helps you feel more comfortable about discussing your budget and needs with your production vendor. You can apply these tips to most vendors you work with, regardless of their field.

Our goal is to provide you with the best services your budget allows.

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How To Brainstorm Fresh Ideas For Events: Inventing Wow Factors

How To Brainstorm Fresh Ideas For Events: Inventing Wow Factors

Whether you’re slightly stuck on how to plan your first event or feeling the burn out as a busy event professional, wow factors matter. Once you have the essential structures taken care of, you’ll want to spend time inventing a way to set your event apart.

You can accomplish that in several ways and we are here today to fire up your inspiration. This quick read will hopefully get your creative juices flowing!

Find Fresh Ideas For Events: Work With Vendors With A Reputation For Excellence

No man or woman is an island. Holding a successful event takes a team and each member of that team has insight that the others may lack. This is one reason that choosing vendors with stellar reputations is crucial.

When you select a professional vendor for your event, they have experience that breeds insight. Maybe they’ve seen the fun a photo booth can bring to a corporate event. Perhaps they know about a killer rental company with the most amazing seating arrangements for a steal. You won’t know unless you pick a leader in the field and foster an open, communicative relationship with them.

If you aren’t sure how to find these types of vendors, ask your colleagues, your venue, or even use online review systems like Yelp to narrow your search.

Find Fresh Ideas For Events: Go Beyond The First Page Of Google

While the idea behind Google’s ranking system is to give you the most accurate results for your query, sometimes it delivers the most popular results. That leaves you with the exact same ideas as everyone else who searches.

When you’re hunting for event planning inspiration, don’t be afraid to skip the first page of results. After all, you want bold ideas that are fresh. There could be something really special lurking a little further down the search page. This is a good area to be a trendsetter in.

Find Fresh Ideas For Events: Attend Events Yourself

Do you have the time and budget to attend a few local events yourself while you’re planning? This is an awesome way to get ideas! Event planners can regularly sneak in a few here and there- many are even low cost or free.

Don’t be afraid to take notes while you’re there and feel free to take contact info from vendors you see doing a great job. You can follow the event on social media to see how they campaign, too.

If you are planning your own wedding, you can still try this tactic. Ask the venue if there are any events coming up that are open to the public. For instance, wine tastings, silent auctions and charity events give you an opportunity to see how the venue ‘works’ in person and pick up all kinds of valuable tips from other planners.

Find Fresh Ideas For Events: Take A Tip From Marketers: Imagine You’re An Attendee

Marketers often create something called a customer persona or ‘ideal avatar’ to help them get inside the minds of their target audience. You can modify this tactic for your event as well.

Make a list of the types of people who will attend. For instance, “Professional Women In Their 30s” could be one group. Another could be “The Groom’s Family.”

Now, brainstorm separate interests these people have. Sure, you’ll be doing some guessing but it’s a more educated guess than a shot in the dark. Hopefully, you’ll see some patterns or easy ways to incorporate a few things from each persona that your guests will remember for months, if not years, to come.

If you’re really stuck, don’t forget what a valuable resource crowdsourcing can be! Your potential attendees can give you their own ideas for events- ones they’re likely to enjoy.

 

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