After you’ve decided on the “whys” of holding a business event and decided what type of event it will be, you still have to decide on a date and location for the event. The where and when of the event are incredibly important to the success of that event. Many a business event has been torpedoed by either a poor choice in location or a poor choice of date and time or both. Many business owners forget that what is convenient and sensible for them is neither convenient nor sensible to their target audience.
This is a key point when considering the location and date of your business event. You are not planning the event for yourself. Instead, you are planning the event (or should be) with the needs and desires of your target audience in mind. This means that you need to take your preferences out of the date and location equation entirely. Instead, you need to start thinking like one of your potential attendees. You need to make your decisions about where to hold your event and when to hold your event based on maximizing attendance. After all, you are going through this entire process to connect with an audience face to face. If there is no audience, because of poor planning, there is no connection to make.
When it comes to the date and time of your event, the choices are relatively straightforward. You want to hold your event on a day and at a time that will insure that maximum percentage of invitees will register. The number one reason for non-attendance at business events is scheduling conflicts, both personal and professional in nature. This means that you need to pick a date well in advance of the current date, so that your attendees have fewer conflicts caused by previously scheduled events. When picking this date, you need to stay away from major holidays and vacation season. For example the second half of December would be a terrible time to attempt to schedule an event.
As to where you should hold your event, well that depends entirely on your target audience’s location, as well as the purpose of the event itself. Is your target audience primarily local? Then any centralized, local location set up for events will do. If the audience is coming from farther afield, then a generalized central location, state, region or country-wide, makes more sense.