Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Deal is in the Details: How to Maximize Your RFPs

Written by Audrey Staples, a Systems Analyst for Cvent in McLean, VA; Audrey is a member of IACC's Emerging Trends Committee, a committee for industry professionals under the age of 30. Audrey brings her knowledge of the vendor side and shares these cool conference center tips to maximize your RFPs.
Planners: Be sure to include some high level information about the organization looking to host their next event on RFPs sent to the conference center.  If your organization has held this event in the past, be sure to add some information about the event history.  These details give the convention center a better picture of the organization’s priorities and consistencies regarding the event.  Providing these details may get you more customized or event specific details from your venue!  Adding information about pick-up might help when negotiating attrition.   And sharing other city locations you have visited in the past, may encourage conference centers to include details about their city’s features.

Conference Centers:  Use all the information planners include on their RFPs to sell your property.  If planners include particulars about this event from years past, take them and relate them to the service or product your center can offer.  Did the Dairy Farmers of America offer an ice cream reception last year?  Play off the theme and suggest a cheese tasting at your conference center!  Use you city’s resources; talk to local chefs for some food theme ideas or elicit your coordinators advice to discuss d├ęcor and setup.  Or use their agenda to highlight your meeting rooms.  Do you have the perfect space for their silent auction?  Give them the details, the flow, so they understand why your venue is the right fit for their event.  Including these ‘extras’ may help the planners understand the experience their attendees will get at your conference center.

What do you also recommend including in your RFPs?

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