Chapter Four
Developing an
Event Concept
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Chapter learning objectives
4.1 Understand the nature of the event environment
4.2 Identify and take account of the various event
stakeholders at the conceptualisation stage
4.3 Appreciate the importance of sponsors and the
need to regard them as event partners
4.4 Appreciate the critical role played by the media and
identify various strategies for engaging the media
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Chapter learning objectives
4.5 Explain the key issues associated with
development of an event mission, aims, objectives
and scope
4.6 Understand the process of establishing an event
concept, theme, format and event proposal
4.7 Understand the key factors that need to be taken
into account when evaluating the feasibility of an
event concept.
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Introduction
• Expectations for an event need to be realistic.
• An event concept brings together creative and
practical considerations about the event.
• Event concepts may
– focus on societal issues
– create a unique theme
– demonstrate new ways of doing things.
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The nature of the event environment
• Stakeholders are those with a vested interested in
the event, and can affect the running and outcome.
• Unhappy stakeholders = unsuccessful event
• Stakeholders will be different depending on the type
of event.
• Each stakeholder will have different:
– objectives
– needs
– Interests.
• Event managers need to balance these carefully.
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The nature of the event environment
• Most events include the following stakeholders:
– Host organisation
• The organisation holding the event, eg: Council
– Host community
• Residents and community groups in a location
• Need to have their support
– Sponsors
• Provide funds, resources and support
• May be involved to increase their profile or gain financially
• Their needs often vary from other stakeholders.
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The nature of the event environment
– Media
• To assist with promotion of the event
– Co-workers
• Those who develop and stage the event
• Can include casual workers and volunteers
– Participants
• Performers, such as musicians or keynote speakers.
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The nature of the event environment
– Spectators
• Those who attend the event
• May include members of the community, employees of a
company, rock music fans or passers-by
• Paying customers or invitees.
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The nature of the event environment
• Stakeholders can have conflicting objectives.
• Prioritising stakeholder groups can assist.
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Engaging sponsors as event partners
• Create a partnership, not just a contract.
• Sponsors always look for something ‘extra’ – create
opportunities for additional promotion of the sponsor.
• Leverage the sponsorship deal by attracting a
market that fits with the event’s ideals and those of
the sponsor.
• Remember – sponsors are attracted by what YOU
can do for THEM.
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Engaging the media
• Media has changed events.
• Audiences viewing on TV or online are significantly
larger than live audiences for many major events.
• Media involvement has the capacity to increase the
profile of the event, and those involved with it.
• Building a partnership with the media can create
unexpected benefits.
• Flexibility is essential.
• Consider print and electronic media – depending on
your event.
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Establishing the event purpose and
scope
• The event concept provides a description of what
the event is about and what it seeks to achieve.
• Purpose
– Mission statement
• Clarifies purpose for all involved
• May remain the same over years or be adapted as changes
occur
• Includes stakeholders, why the event is happening, how it will
achieve its purpose and values that affect the running of the
event.
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Establishing the event purpose and
scope
– Aims
• Aims discuss why the event is happening and follow from the
mission statement
• Example: showcasing local artists.
– Objectives
• Objectives are the way outcomes are measured – how we
know if the event has achieved its purpose
• Need to be SMART
• Example: visitor numbers increase by 20% from previous
year.
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Establishing the event concept,
theme, format and event proposal
• Scope
– Parameters of the event e.g.: time, coverage and cost.
• Concept
– Establishes theme
– Considers venue, layout, duration, resources, stakeholders.
• Theme
– Differentiates one event from another
– All events need a creative component
– Can relate to history, sport, culture, food, colour, senses
– All aspects of the event must be consistent with the theme
– Use costumes, lighting, food or decor to reinforce theme.
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Establishing the event concept,
theme, format and event proposal
• Format
– Venue / Physical Layout
• May come down to originality vs budget
• Venue may suggest the theme
– Audience
• Consider effect on audience and their comfort
• Visual effects need to be seen!
– Timing
• Season, day of the week, time of day and duration
• Adequate lead time is essential to good planning.
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Establishing the event concept,
theme, format and event proposal
– Expertise of the event team
• Includes organisers and contractors
• Establish critical skills through Work Breakdown Structure
– Stakeholders
• The needs of stakeholders will influence the event format.
• Event Proposal
– Developed by event companies to showcase ability
– Include all aspects of how event will be run
– Used to gain approval to run the event.
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Evaluating the feasibility of an event
concept
• Is the event realistic?
– Resources available
– Expertise of event team
– Ability to handle tasks
– Host community support
• Will there be an audience and media attention?
– Market research to establish audience
– Discover competition, price sensitivity, changes to make
– Timely advertising to target market
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Evaluating the feasibility of an event
concept
• Is it financially viable?
– Means different things to different people
– Contingencies should be included in budgets
• What are the risks?
– Risk management is essential
– Operational risks
– Marketing risks
– Financial risks
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Chapter summary
• Event concepts are varied, depending on the event
type.
• Stakeholders need to be identified before a concept
is proposed.
• Sponsors and media are important in conveying a
concept.
• Purpose and scope show the reason for the event
and how it will be achieved.
• The concept must be integrated into every part of
the event.
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Chapter summary
• The theme is what makes your event unique.
• Physical layouts can affect the concept.
• Concepts must suit the target audience.
• Feasibility of an event concept can be measured by
assessing:
– realism
– audience and media
– financial viability
– risks.
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