Phew! You’ve worked your behind off to make this private event the best you could. Now it’s time to put your legs up and…
Nope, there’s one last thing to do. Actually, there are seven more things to do.
Read on to find out…
- Why you should thank everyone for coming
- How to know if the event was a success
- What questions to ask your attendees
- How to arrange follow-up meetings
- What to look for in the budget
- How to make the most of the memories from the event
- How to prep for the next private event
It’s the final step of the journey, so let’s put one foot in front of the other.
1. Thank your guests for coming
You should always thank your guests for coming to the event. Private events tend to be smaller in scale than public ones, which makes it easier to personally thank everyone.
Message your guests individually and comment on specific episodes during the event. Maybe you had a good chat about something or planned to meet up in the future.
If your event featured any VIP guests like influencers, it’s also good form to thank them personally. They might just be interested in coming to your next event and help you promote it.
Did anyone sponsor your event? Then you should show them your appreciation and share any key figures with them from the event.
If you had a team to help you out with arranging the event, make sure you tell them what a difference they’ve made to your work.
Finally, you should thank the venue that hosted your private event. If they made an effort to accommodate your privacy on the day, give them some positive feedback.
2. See if you reached the goals for the event
If your private event was a birthday, a wedding, or a work anniversary, then the aim may just have been for everyone to have a good time.
But if your private event was more business-related, you should look at whether or not you got what you wanted out of the event.
Was it, for example, to make specific new connections in the industry? Were you discussing a company merger with another business?
Some of these goals are not predicated on the event alone, but you can evaluate whether or not the private event helped facilitate them.
Were they impressed by the venue, the food, and the service? Was it a good space to have a meeting? Or is there something you could do better next time?
Tip: Read more about how to follow up after a networking event.
3. Get feedback on how well you did
Feedback is crucial when it comes to improving what you do. Even if your private event was an informal one, it can’t hurt to get some opinions from the attendees.
If you were hosting a family reunion, ask everyone how well they think you did. Maybe they’ll have useful suggestions or even volunteer to help with the next gathering.
If your private event was strictly business, you should still ask the attendees for their feedback. It will make you appear more professional and appreciative of their opinion.
Tip: Check out our guide on evaluating events.
4. Strengthen your connections
Hopefully, you’ve had a good time socialising with everyone at the event. Maybe you’ve made some new friends, and you’d like to see them again after the event.
LinkedIn is a great place for business professionals to connect after a networking event. Add them as a connection and drop them a message to catch up.
Facebook is the best place to get in touch with family members you may not have spoken to in a long time. Message them and talk about future weddings, birthdays, or reunions.
Social media is good, but face-to-face meetings are better. See if you can strengthen your relationships by scheduling in an informal meet-up.
5. The bottom line
After the event, you should check your bank account to see if it’s time to panic or not. Did you go over budget? Or do you still have some coins left over for the next event?
If you’ve used a ticketing software, you can easily see how many tickets you’ve sold (or how many people RSVP’d in case it was a free event).
Once you have everyone’s feedback in front of you, it’s also easier to evaluate if the money you spent on the venue, food, drinks, and entertainment was worth it.
Could you stretch the budget for your next private event? Maybe set a bar tab instead of making it a free bar all night? Or maybe court some companies to sponsor part of the next event?
If you did have any corporate sponsors for your event, you should share the results with them. They might be interested in sponsoring future events if this one turned out well.
6. Prime people for the next private event
Assuming the event was a success, you should prepare everyone for it to happen again…and much better than before.
One of the ways you can keep people coming back to your private event is to offer them a discount on the next time they attend.
Another way is to make them an influencer. Private events are already exclusive by nature. But if you let one of your previous guests bring a friend next time, then that gives them VIP status.
Both approaches are great for turning your guests into your event advocates. They will be particularly useful for private events since your promotion is a bit more limited.
7. Create social media content with highlights
If you’ve made some great memories with your guests, then you’ve hopefully immortalised them with some pictures and videos.
Depending on your approach to promoting private events, you can share these on your social media channels. You can also just forward them to the guests individually.
If you have a lot of footage and images, make sure to sift through them before just dumping it all online or in an email.
Create an event highlight reel with only the best or most memorable moments from the day. That way, you present the private event in the nicest light possible.
Organising a private event is often an educational experience, even for the most seasoned event planner.
Hopefully, you’ve come away from this event all the wiser.
If you need to simplify ticketing for your next event, consider using a ticketing system. You can make the event both private and free of charge if you don’t plan on selling tickets.
Thanks for reading, and good luck with your next event!