February 12, 2018

How to Get Your Client Out of Their Box

Elin Warfvinge

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As an event planner, it’s probably not very hard for you to think big. You’ve always got another great, big idea for an event, and as far as you’re concerned, only the sky and the budget are the limits. However, while being limitlessly creative can be a great thing, your client may not always be as ready to get out of their comfort zones. If you’ve got a client who wants to play it too safe, we’ve got a few helpful tips on how you can show them easy ways to step out of their box and think bigger, so they can make an event more impressionable and unique for its attendees.


What’s Holding Your Client Back?

Before you can work your event planner magic and help your client open themselves up to a whole new world of possibilities for their event, you need to understand what exactly your client is hung up on. While your client could be nervous or concerned about anything, these hang-ups can typically be divided into a few broad categories: fear, personal preferences or organizational pressure.

Typically, when you approach a client with a new idea and they have a negative response, it’s because of one of those above categories. They could be afraid that the idea won’t work in their favor, or that it’ll be too expensive to execute well.

If fear isn’t holding your client back from understanding or executing your ideas, realize that it may be their personal tastes and preferences that aren’t matching up with yours. Some people have different visions when it comes to their events, and some people may not know what they want at all.

Lastly, your client may love your ideas but struggle to put them into motion because of who is above them. Everyone wants their organization to like the events they execute, but if they’re not the top boss, there might be pressure to play it safe. These people might not feel comfortable with trying something new, and the insecurity could lead them to say no to something that could make their event great.

So, now that you understand why your client is hesitant to accept your ideas, how can you overcome their hang ups?


5 Steps to Convincing Your Client to Think Big

1. Know the Facts

First, make sure you are being transparent with clients and showing examples of what worked and didn’t work for you at past events. An easy way to show a client how valuable your ideas are is to back up your pitch with numbers. Using an event app like MeetApp can easily organize stats and analytics about who was invited to your events, who attends your events, what they liked or disliked about the event and whether or not they returned to future events. These numbers can give your client a better picture of how your idea will impact their bottom line.


2. Know What They Want

Make sure that you know what your client wants. If they have no idea, encourage them to browse online for inspiration. Knowing what they want to achieve with their event can help you tailor your ideas to their desires. To make sure that your tastes are meshing, you may also try creating an inspiration board with your client to flesh out all the components that create the right feeling for their event. Free sites like Canva can be useful in the creation of this board.


3. Keep the Client Involved

Don’t be afraid to tailor the event planning experience to how your client typically works. Not everyone you will be working with is going to have experience with planning events, and they could be confused or frustrated by your process, making them resistant to new ideas. By understanding your client’s role in this event, you can convince them more easily to trust your vision.


4. Clarify the Details

Make sure that your client knows and is on board with the goals of their event. Be sure to relate your ideas back to these goals. Also make sure that you and your client are both fully aware of the budget and restrictions that you are following while planning your event. Assure your client that your ideas are within any limitations, financial or otherwise.


5. Utilize Context

Finally, remind your client about the importance of the event. Not only will the event make the company or organization that they represent stronger from within, but it will make them more competitive on a global scale. When everyone around the world is utilizing events as a marketing strategy, incorporating new ideas into these events only makes them stand out from the competition.

Good Luck!

Convincing a client to trust your experience, instincts and ideas may not always be the easiest task, but it’s worth it in the end. Just remember to be transparent, understanding and strategic, and you’ll find success.

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