Event Strategy & Planning

Do you want to create a deeper relationship with your customers? Or generate more leads that convert to business quicker?

Events are perhaps the most efficient and effective way to impact your objectives and do it quicker and with lasting impact.

Are you interested in creating a new event or making modifications and improvements to your existing programs? Michael Doyle Partners can help you succeed beyond your expectations working with you through all aspects of event planning, strategy and execution. Here is where we focus:

Strategic Planning and Prioritization (Critical)

The only place to start when planning an event whether an in person, online or combined (hybrid), is with the primary objectives clearly understood and agree upon by all stakeholders. Everyone needs to know the purpose for the program and the specific objectives of the event.

This phase is critical because it is the driver for the decisions and plans associated with all of the other steps in the overall event strategy. During this process, we’ll help identify the measurable results and the method by which they can be accurately and most efficiently reported.

Other critical tasks in this phase include:

  • Identification of the program owner
  • Identification of the funding sources
  • Identification of the key timeline events
  • Identification of the project teams and program management approach

Audience Profiling & Market Size

We start by helping you identify your target audience segments and understanding the reason you are targeting them as well as the value you are going to offer them in order to attract them to your event (always a good process to revisit). In some cases it may be necessary to do some research to understand the audience segments and their needs better. For example, knowing how familiar and technology savvy they are can be very important as well as knowing if they are more inclined to access your event content online, in person or using a mobile device.

Other tasks in this phase include:

  • Identification of social media used
  • Identification of geographic location
  • Identification of their available technology infrastructure
  • Identification of potential time, funding and travel challenges

Content Strategy

Our extensive event experience ranges from user group meetings, large conferences and trade shows to more intimate executive summits. Whether physical, online or a mixed event (hybrid), we work with clients to create a unique program with compelling content that meet the needs and objectives of the target audience all the while mapping to the overall objectives of the organization.  From strategic planning, content development, speaker recruitment to speaker handling, MDP can assist all along the way.

Other tasks in this phase include:

  • Identification of educational value and increase in job satisfaction
  • Identification of real-time application of the skills to impact their job
  • Identification of life-time value of the knowledge and career impact
  • Identification of exclusivity or scarcity of information

User Experience Mapping Strategy

We’ll help you need articulate what it is you’ll want your attendees to experience during your event and why. We start by examining what you want them to think, feel and, most importantly, do…what action you want them to take as a result of your event.

Other tasks in this phase include:

  • Identification of the event flow
  • Identification of content delivery techniques
  • Identification of desired interactions with people and content
  • Identification of exhibitor/sponsor engagement with attendees
  • Identification of social media channels and engagement plan

Monetization and Funding Strategy

Depending on the funding method identified for the event, you may need to develop a strategy to generate revenue from, the event. It’s important to keep in mind that there are direct revenue sources such as exhibits, sponsorships and ticket sales as well as indirect sources. In direct sources include additional product sales, referrals, sales of bundled packages of content, certification programs and more. MDP will help you build a funding and business model that works in your unique situation.

Other tasks in this phase include:

  • Identification of the all budget sources (internal, partner, etc.)
  • Identification of method to develop and test offerings
  • Identification of competitive offerings
  • Identification of subsidies, grants, donations

Technology/Digital Strategy

Only after completing your evaluation and plans for all of the proceeding phases would you then be ready to look at technology and develop you digital event strategy. You need to know what you are going to be doing from a content, delivery, engagement and monetization standpoint before you can begin planning your digital strategy. MDP has certified Digital Event Strategists on staff to help you craft the complete plan and help select the technology that is right for you.

Considerations in this phase include:

  • Identification of your mobile strategy
  • Identification of features and functionality required for registration
  • Identification of online streaming, capture and subsequent content hosting
  • Identification of critical integrations required

Marketing & Audience Acquisition Strategy

You’ve identified your target audience segments and now it is time to create the plan to reach those potential attendees with your message. Each audience segment will likely have a slightly different message and possibly a different preferred means of communication. In all the studies to date, email marketing has been by far, the most effective means to reach and move people to action for an event. Social media is relatively new but is continuing to grow in effectiveness though lagging well behind email.

Other considerations in this phase include:

  • Identification of social media most used by audience segments
  • Identification of proper messages by audience segment
  • Identification of partner or affiliate marketing channels
  • Identification of social media channels and engagement plan
  • Identification of proper incentives and offers

Execution & Production Strategy

Like everything else, you need a plan for your logistics and production execution. Now that the foundation has been built around your overall objectives and individual goals, a plan to execute on the program becomes the next task. A comprehensive timeline and action plan for each prior phase is helpful when planning your resources and activities for the execution of the event as many milestones and tasks will be overlapping. Remember, you may have to look outside for additional resources to support your event and MDP has many resources and partners that can help.

Other considerations in this phase include:

  • Identification of venue and related meeting planning commitments
  • Identification of socialization plan and messaging requirements
  • Identification of training requirement for the usage of the digital event solutions

Note: This phase is particularly complex for more robust events

Measurement and Program Adjustments

In any business activity, measurement is a critical activity in order to gauge effectiveness of resources deployed to achieve objectives and to guide changes in the use of those resources to improve results. Measurement of events either face-to-face or digital has been somewhat elusive in part because the time and resources to measure the results have not been adequately budgeted. This is why at MDP, we start the measurement process with the very initial planning phase for the event.

Considerations in this phase include:

  • Identification of your strategy to measure event objectives
  • Identification of both the quantifiable and qualitative measurement approaches
  • Identification of metrics tracked via an organization’s CRM system
  • Identification of behavioral metrics evaluating attendee intent and actions taken

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