As Heather mentioned in her opening piece her ‘business happy place’ is when the live event finally takes place, but there is so much to do before getting to that point and of course the very first is deciding on a venue and negotiating the best price possible.
We have been amazed in the past to hear prior to working with us, clients have accepted the first price quoted by a venue. There is always room for negotiation and on the rare occasion of a price being fixed there is certainly an opportunity to negotiate what is included within that price.
But first there are a few other things to consider:
· best location for your client and their attendees
· the right type of venue for the event
· transportation links
to name a few, but of course getting the best price and saving yourself or your client money is key to success.
We have often saved our clients as much on the venue as the cost of our service but it is about being fair – this must work for the venue too. Get the best price but make sure you don’t negotiate to a point that they cut back on the service they offer to accommodate the price you ‘demand’. On the day you need the venue on side to support you with those little surprises you can’t always plan for.
You will know your budget so be realistic about the venues you can approach but also keep in mind the value and kudos your event may bring to a City. There may even be subvention available.
Consider how flexible you can be on the day(s) the event takes place as this can make a real difference to the price and consider how many of the rooms are needed on set up day and how many are only needed for the live event.
Think about the extras the venue might be able to throw in at no additional charge rather than just reducing the price. There will be many extras that you want to consider at the outset. Negotiate as many as possible are included before signing contracts. Once you have signed, many of your additional request are going to come with a price tag.
Have a clear picture of what the final event is going to look like and what you need to make that happen then go out to each of the venues with the same brief and a format you would like to receive the information back. This will make it much easier for you to compare price and inclusions or perhaps more importantly, exclusions.
You don’t want to find out halfway through the planning that something major hasn’t been included in the price quoted.
Once you have each of your quotations there will be some you immediately discount from your list and in normal times a site visit to compare and negotiate with those remaining is a great next step.
There is nothing better than making that journey, considering the hurdles your attendees will encounter and seeing the venue ‘in the flesh’. However, if travel restrictions stop you doing this before you need to contract most venues are now set up to do this virtually so be sure to take a good look around, and when restrictions lift still go in person. You don’t want the first time you see the venue to be the day of the event!
So picture the event, consider all you will need, write a brief and start negotiating.
If you questions about venue negotiation feel free to email Heather our Company Director