By Latisha Ellison
Daniel Dao and Carly Nash presented “It’s All in the Details: Planning a Successful Event,” during the PRSSA National Conference in Atlanta. Dao and Nash work for ignition, which is a part of Havas Sports and Entertainment network and specializes in event production. Their session focused on experiential marketing—a fancy phrase for event planning—and how one can create a great event.
The first trick to event planning is understanding the 80/20 rule. Dao explained that they plan events knowing what is happening 80 percent of the time, and knowing that 20 percent of time something will go wrong or not as planned. When that 20 percent happens, “take a breath, evaluate the situation, and be resourceful,” Dao said.
Plan all events with PASSION:
Poise: believe in what you’re doing and trust in the mission.
Attitude: P5 (proper planning prevents poor performance) + D4 (dedication, desire, discipline, determination) + C3 (don’t complain, condemn, criticize)
Substance over style: style is important, but you have to have the substance to back everything up.
Strategic: think and be smart.
Innovation: be ahead of the curve and know what is new and relevant.
On time, On budget
Nonstop, forward motion: when problems happen, deal with it and keep going with a positive attitude.
Nash and Dao pride themselves and ignition on being ignitors. They believe energy ignites action. Before planning an event one has to decide what the desired response is, how the event can ignite stories and what the measurable actions are.
Some other key takeaways from this session included knowing your audience, developing a consistent message, using your brand and creating content. Nash stressed the importance of knowing your audience when planning an event. If one knows her audience, she will be able to create an event that caters to them, and they will appreciate it.
Dao said it best when he said, “We exist to make a positive difference in people’s lives.” An event has the potential to gain great exposure for a brand and leave a lasting impression on its customers.