If you’re planning an upcoming event, you’re likely eager to start crossing off tasks from your to-do list and contacting the required vendors. Event planning is enjoyable and rewarding, but it can also be stressful and overwhelming for those who don’t know where to start or have trouble staying organized.
Whether you’re planning a work conference, networking session, or a trade show, every event is just as important as the last. When planning a successful event, it’s best to begin planning the event as soon as possible–while also remaining flexible as in life, change is the only constant.
To foster success in your event planning endeavors, we’ve compiled 18 excellent resources that will keep you organized, on track, and impress your boss and stakeholders.
Become an Event Planning Pro & Create a Successful Event Series (Book)
This book is great for event planning beginners in the corporate world because it covers how to host a successful event that can generate revenue, exposure, and leads for a company. After finishing the book, you’ll know how to grow attendance, market your event, and increase revenue for your business or company.
IACC Venue Finder
You can’t host an event without a venue, which is why sourcing a suitable venue is one of the first things an event planner should do. IACC Venue Finder helps event planners explore available venues in their area. Venues can be filtered by their location, size, WiFi bandwidth, and how many guests you expect to attend.
Search Function in IACC Venue Finder
MPI Find a Speaker Database
Depending on the type of event you’re planning, you may need speakers to educate or entertain your guests. The MPI Find a Speaker Database helps connect event planners with available speakers who specialize in various fields such as business ethics, leadership growth, negotiation, workplace culture, and mindfulness. Many of the speakers are also available for virtual events.
MPI Speaker Database Search Tool
EventSprout Event Ticketing & Attendance Software
Providing prospective attendees with a seamless and straightforward way to purchase tickets is essential for a good turnout. Plus, you’ll be able to focus on other tasks knowing that ticketing for the event is entirely under control. With EventSprout, planners can sell tickets online and in-person for their events. The website makes registration and ticketing scanning easy, and the event organizer is paid immediately after a ticket is sold. Tickets are customizable for any occasion, and the website’s ability to offer dynamic pricing options for tickets increases sales potential.
EventSprout Ticketing Platform
Experiential Marketing: Secrets, Strategies, & Success Stories from the World's Greatest Brands (Book)
This book offers a deep dive into marketing events and how face-to-face engagements can build brand awareness and generate revenue. Once you’re finished reading the book, you’ll be well educated on topics such as the anatomy of a brand experience, the psychology of engagement, and experiential marketing.
If you’re planning a medium-sized or large-scale corporate meeting, MeetingsNet can provide valuable resources. The website hosts educational webinars filled with information about hosting meetings within the medical and pharmaceutical industry. It also offers resources such as webinars on expos, destination venues, and global events planning.
This website is packed with information and resources on event catering, design, venues, destinations, online events, and hybrid events. BizBash focuses on the day-to-day tasks that event planners typically navigate, alleviating confusion and feelings like “How do I start planning my event?”
Book: The Non-Obvious Guide to Event Planning (For Kick-Ass Gatherings that Inspire People)
Event planners find this book highly amusing, engaging, and inspiring. It is full of suggestions about how to create a captivating event at a low cost. No matter the size of the event you’re planning, this book provides the tools needed to host an event that nobody wants to miss. Readers learn how to create a content road map, select the most appropriate speakers, find sponsors, and manage event logistics.
This event planning software helps users manage client inquiries and communications, payments, templates, and invoices. With HoneyBook, event planners stay organized because all of their information and resources are stored in one user-friendly database. Event planning templates available on HoneyBook include contracts, invoices, and proposals–all of which can be customized to suit your brand.
HoneyBook proposal example
When planning an event, numerous tasks are being tackled simultaneously, making it easy for things to slip through the cracks. Asana is a project management tool that helps event planners maximize their productivity without feeling confused or overwhelmed. Through the checklist, event planners can update their budget, manage vendors and guests, check tasks off their list, minimize any miscommunications, and avoid discrepancies.
Most event planners are familiar with Cvent and the helpful resources the events marketplace has to offer. The website is filled with resources such as blog posts on throwing a successful in-person or virtual event, venues suitable for large conferences, event marketing, and attracting event attendees. It also offers tools for promoting an event, attendee engagement, and discovering actionable insights.
Mobile App for Events Designed by Cvent
Eventbrite’s goal is to help event planners spend less time on ticket sales so they can spend more time creating meaningful live experiences. Through Eventbrite, planners can promote their event, manage ticket sales, create custom email campaigns, and showcase their event with personalized websites. It also offers insightful analytics to help planners discover where their tickets are coming from to make informed decisions.
Presentations are a great way to market a conference or tradeshow–and they need to be stored on a platform where they can be accessed by the people who need them. With Slideshare, presentations are safely stored in one location. Furthermore, Slideshare’s homepage frequently rotates stored event marketing presentations to increase exposure.
Social media marketing is a crucial part of creating a successful event because it raises awareness and attracts guests, which leads to increased ticket sales. With Hootsuite, an event planner can access and control all of their company’s social media accounts, scheduling posts to go out at peak times. Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter posts can be scheduled days, weeks, or months in advance. Once the social media posts go live, you can view analytics on their performance.
HootSuite Social Media Scheduling Tool
Book: Event Management For Dummies
This book offers tools, checklists, tips, and tricks that help you plan successful corporate events. After reading it, you’ll be familiar with event planning topics such as budgeting, scheduling, event promotion, targeting an audience, venue searching, insurance, securing food and beverage vendors, and travel logistics.
Into the Heart of Meetings: Basic Principles of Meeting Design (Book)
This book is perfect for event planners who specialize in planning meetings for businesses. It gives readers a thorough understanding of the processes of meetings and the tools required to ensure each meeting has purpose and meets its intended goals. By understanding the design of meetings, event planners become proficient in hosting influential meetings that embody the company’s mission. This book is considered mandatory reading material for many event management courses in universities all over the world.
Peerspace is an excellent resource for sourcing in-person venues for events such as meetings, conferences, weddings, and staff parties. The venues it offers are unique and make your event memorable for every participant. Each listing includes high-quality images, detailed descriptions, and testimonials from people who have previously rented the space. Peerspace also has a concierge team that assists with catering and furniture rentals.
Whova is robust event management software used by renowned organizations such as TedX and Harvard University. The software has an event app filled with management tools and marketing resources that help you flawlessly pull off a small or large-scale conference. It also offers in-person and hybrid event platforms, online registration, and event marketing.
Whova Event Platform
The Bottom Line: Event Planning Resources
Developing a successful event involves many moving parts, and the best event planners use a wide range of resources to foster event attendance, organize the event from start to finish, and generate sales revenue. Incorporate these resources into your event planning strategy to ensure you meet your event goals.