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Large event organising: whats the big deal Bonnie Brimstone External Relations Officer, IFS

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Title: Large event organising: whats the big deal Bonnie Brimstone External Relations Officer, IFS


1
Large event organising whats the big deal?
Bonnie Brimstone External Relations Officer,
IFS
  • ESRC Investments Communications Conference 20084
    November 2008, London
  • www.ifs.org.uk

2
Objective thinking why an event?
  • Typically two main reasons for organising an
    event
  • 1) Dissemination (giving information and sharing
    ideas)
  • Research progress / conclusions
  • Response to policy or current events
  • The focus is on presentation (with Q A
    usually theatre style)
  • 2) Discussion (gaining information and ideas)
  • Feedback / input on current research / new ideas
  • The focus is on networking / interaction
    (usually round table)
  • ? In both cases you should consider if your
    objective can be achieved by other means
    publication, press release, email, letters,
    website?

3
Large events is bigger better?
  • Dissemination any number of delegates
  • Discussion smaller groups are easier to manage
    (25 and under)
  • 3) Both You can have the best of both worlds
    through breakout sessions
  • In all cases quality is almost always better (and
    more cost effective) than quality
  • so ensure that you are not filling seats for the
    sake of it.
  • TIP A good facilitator or chair is essential at
    ALL events.
  • Dissemination They manage Q A, introduce
    speakers etc
  • Discussion They ensure everyone can contribute,
    guide discussion and
  • take notes to feedback.

4
Once you are clear about your objectives you can
consider
  • Speakers
  • Audience
  • Timing (when to hold the event)
  • Format (length and type of event)
  • Location
  • Marketing
  • And. Budget.

5
Budgeting for your event
  • Essential from the outset. You should consider
  • Existing funds (dont forget you can often apply
    to ESRC)
  • Potential funds (revenue from delegates /
    sponsorship)
  • Is it worth it? Does charging / sponsorship fit
    with your objectives and
  • audience?
  • Estimated (quotes) and actual (contracts /
    invoices) income and
  • expenditure
  • Fixed / variable costs
  • TIP You can find a financial planning form (and
    other useful tips!) on the
  • ESRC website www.esrc.ac.uk/esrcinfocentre/CTK/ev
    ents/default.aspx

6
Timing is key
  • 1. When to hold your event?
  • - When are speakers free?
  • Who is attending and when are they most likely to
    attend?
  • When will publication / research be completed
    (realistically!)?
  • Need to avoid a clash?
  • Financial / other constraints?
  • 2. When to start organising and marketing?
  • Booking venues and speakers larger events /
    important speakers
  • longer lead times
  • Marketing depends on type of event and who you
    are marketing to
  • 3. How long should the event be?
  • Objectives
  • Stakeholders / audience commitment

7
The perfect venue
  • Issues to consider
  • The size of your event
  • Length of your event
  • Type of event
  • Format
  • Location
  • Facilities required
  • Accessibility
  • TIP Help is at hand! Use others to help you
    find your venue
  • ESRC www.esrc.ac.uk/esrcinfocentre/CTK/events/def
    ault.aspx

8
Marketing your event
  • Larger events require a wider marketing pool
  • - Internal database / contacts list
  • - Specific individuals in the field (ask
    researchers / speakers)
  • - Get others to market your event for free!
    associations, unions,
  • University departments, government contacts (e.g
    GES), the media and
  • funders like the ESRC.
  • TIP ESRC centre branding on materials / website
    can attract people to your event and the
  • ESRC can help to market your event through their
    website and newsletter.
  • Get others to market your event at a price do
    you have a budget to place inserts in
  • conference packs or adverts in the national /
    trade press?
  • and often a variety of formats
  • - Website
  • - Email (date in the diary followed by further
    info and reminder)

9

10
(No Transcript)
11
Case study IFS Residential Conference April 2007
  • Marketing residential quality of audience
    long lead time (8 months)
  • Date in the diary email and website (September
    2006)
  • IFS newsletter via website and email (October and
    December 2006)
  • Hard copy - professionally designed flyer
    (December 2006)
  • Advert in Fiscal Studies journal (December
    2006)
  • Advertised through other organisations CIOT,
    ETPF (December 2006)
  • Reminder / further information email (January
    2007)

12
Administration
  • Behind every good event there is a good
    administrator. You will need to
  • - Set and track your budget
  • - Find and book facilities / staff (negotiation,
    contracts, function sheets)
  • - Liaise with speakers (accommodation, travel,
    dinner, presentations,
  • papers.)
  • - Market the event
  • - Process bookings
  • - Prepare materials and delegate packs (papers,
    speaker biogs, delegate
  • information, programme, delegate list, slides,
    evaluation forms)
  • TIP You can never have enough back-up options.
    File everything relating to the above in
  • hard copy in a conference file and copy
    everything relating to the conference onto a USB
    to
  • take with you to the venue.
  • - Onsite administration
  • - After your event you should process evaluation
    forms / arrange a de-brief
  • - Update your website with relevant documentation
  • - Send out follow-up documentation / information
    to delegates

13
ESRC centre guidelines and support
  • 1) Communications toolkit
  • http//www.esrc.ac.uk/toolkit
  • ..and team http//www.esrc.ac.uk/esrcinfocentre/C
    TK/comms-team.aspx
  • 2) Keep event branding consistent with the
    branding of the programme /
  • centre and the ESRC's Identity Guidelines for use
    of its corporate identity
  • http//www.esrc.ac.uk/ESRCInfoCentre/Support/Ident
    ity_Guidelines/index.aspx
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