When selecting a venue for your event, you may look at a venue and decide immediately whether it can host the size of the event you're considering, but some elements of selecting the right venue aren't so obvious. For example, does the venue offer appropriate dining options? Does it meet the needs of your clients? You must think about the attendees you're trying to reach, and determine whether the venue is appropriate for their needs, too; not just your own.
Consider Your Audience
When you're planning an event, you have to consider your audience and evaluate their needs in order to select an appropriate venue. It's not just a matter of matching the venue to the event. Even if the venue is ideally suited to the event, but doesn't meet your attendees' needs, you might have to find a new venue. Put yourself in your attendees' shoes. What sort of things are your attendees likely to want to do while at your venue? This is always a consideration, but is particularly noteworthy if you're running an all-day or multi-day event.
Does the Venue Have Cell Phone Access?
Some great venues just aren't all that close to a cell phone tower, and may not have good cell phone access. If your attendees are going to want to use their phones, this will be a great source of frustration for them. Is your event an all-day, weekday course for business clients? Or even a multi-day course? If you're taking business clients away from their offices during the day, they're going to need cell phone access. They'll want to check in with the office at breaks and lunch, and if they don't have cell access, they'll get frustrated and may even drop out of subsequent days of your event. This might not seem like an obvious consideration when you're selecting a venue, but it's vitally important.
Does the Venue Provide Wi-Fi?
For certain types of events, or certain audiences, you'll want to select a venue that can provide Wi-Fi access. For example, if you're hosting a multi-day event for business clients, Wi-Fi is invaluable. It enables business clients to check their email, and maybe even get a little bit of work done during breaks or lunch. Likewise, if your event encourages people to work online, Wi-Fi access is a must-have. If you're running an event about Internet marketing, for example, and want people to complete exercises where they research online marketing campaigns or tools, providing them with Wi-Fi adds an extra dimension of thoughtfulness to your venue selection.
Think about Attendees' Needs When Selecting a Venue
Bottom line: when you're selecting a venue, you must consider both your needs and the attendees' needs. You might have a favorite venue that works great for personal motivation seminars, but is completely inappropriate for business courses, because it doesn't meet business attendees' needs. Anticipate what your attendees are going to want and deliver it in the venue to avoid frustration. A thoughtful host can make a great event!