How to plan a business cocktail party

How to plan a business cocktail party

Do you plan to organ­ise a pro­fes­sion­al event? A moment to net­work with exist­ing or poten­tial clients or part­ners, to increase their loy­al­ty or con­vince them to work with you? A cock­tail par­ty is a great oppor­tu­ni­ty to net­work with a select num­ber of peo­ple. You can cre­ate a unique event that brings peo­ple togeth­er over drinks and canapés.

A cock­tail par­ty is a good alter­na­tive to sit-down din­ners that don’t favour move­ment and exchange. Cock­tail par­ties make net­work­ing eas­i­er since every­one is stand­ing and can enjoy food and drinks while talk­ing and mov­ing around. To cre­ate opti­mal con­ver­sa­tion and meet­ing oppor­tu­ni­ties, and to build strong rela­tions with and among your guests, your cock­tail plan­ning must be flaw­less.

Define the format

“Cock­tail par­ty” can mean many things. You should real­ly think about the most rel­e­vant for­mat based on your needs. Should it be a lunch-time or evening cock­tail? Is it embed­ded with­in anoth­er event – con­fer­ence, annu­al com­pa­ny event? Who are your guests? What are your expec­ta­tions for this event: increas­ing your pro­fes­sion­al net­work, acquir­ing new cus­tomers, increas­ing your exist­ing cus­tomers’ loy­al­ty, etc. Hav­ing an answer to these ques­tions will enable you to set a frame­work for your event.

Booking the perfect venue

In plan­ning an event, the venue is often a key strate­gic aspect. It is even more so in the case of a cock­tail par­ty, whose venue must match your objec­tives and your guests’ expec­ta­tions. Wel­come them in a venue that is unique, out­stand­ing or very rep­re­sen­ta­tive of your com­pa­ny, theme or indus­try. Your guests’ first impres­sion of your event will come from the venue so take your time in choos­ing the loca­tion. Do not hes­i­tate to stand out and look for unex­pect­ed loca­tions so that they feel spe­cial.

And let’s not for­get the prac­ti­cal aspects either. Your loca­tion should be easy to access for your guests, whether by pub­lic or pri­vate trans­ports. Final­ly, green spaces – out­doors if pos­si­ble – are always a bonus.

Set your event on a weekday

This may seem obvi­ous, but it is impor­tant to remind it any­way – pro­fes­sion­al events very often occur dur­ing the week. Your guests are more like­ly to say yes to a work lunch or evening event on a week­day. Pay atten­tion to any oth­er pro­fes­sion­al events they may attend. For prac­ti­cal rea­sons and to secure their atten­dance, be sure to share the date of your cock­tail well in advance.

Securing your guests’ attendance

To be sure that your guests will be there on the day, let them know about it in advance using the tra­di­tion­al “Save the date”, fol­lowed by a per­son­al invi­ta­tion and some reminders. Many mobile apps — such as Google cal­en­dar, iOS cal­en­dar, Face­book events, and more — make it easy for peo­ple to save your event in their cal­en­dars, so make use of them. To man­age your invi­ta­tions and reg­is­tra­tions, cre­ate a cus­tomised reg­is­tra­tion plat­form – this will make plan­ning eas­i­er and save you time. On the day, you will have all your guests’ infor­ma­tion in one place and be able to con­trol admis­sions if you would like.

Choosing the right service providers

Your cock­tail party’s atmos­phere is just as impor­tant as the venue. Wel­come your guests in an envi­ron­ment where it is easy to break the ice and start chat­ting with each oth­er. You may con­sid­er organ­is­ing enter­tain­ment, set­ting up booths or break­ing up the venue in dif­fer­ent areas. Pay spe­cial atten­tion to your ser­vice providers and any speak­ers or enter­tain­er you would like to recruit. The cock­tail for­mat enables you to spend time with exist­ing and poten­tial cus­tomers in an infor­mal set­ting, so for­get about very for­mal speech­es and pre­sen­ta­tions. Favour short inter­ven­tions and encour­age your guests to par­tic­i­pate and inter­act.

The little bonuses of a professional event

The lit­tle bonus­es are the ele­ments that guests will remem­ber once your event is over. This can be an activ­i­ty or a spe­cif­ic theme, a unique drink or dish, some good­ies or gifts offered at the cock­tail par­ty, a cus­tom thank you note after the event…Don’t under­es­ti­mate these ges­tures as they can make all the dif­fer­ence!

You have all the ingre­di­ents to pre­pare the per­fect cock­tail. All you need now is to adapt these rec­om­men­da­tions to your com­pa­ny!

You too can plan a pro­fes­sion­al event using Weezevent by click­ing below:

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