Here's what I want you to know if you are new to organising events.
1. You don’t need to "be more reliable/have better profile/have larger audience” to get great sponsors or speakers
7 years ago, I did my very first independent event to raise awareness on domestic violence with no company backing me up. I was just this ‘Rashidah girl’ asking for sponsorships support using my Gmail account and all I had was my mission and sponsorship strategies.
The partnerships I secured?
- A venue sponsorship in a beautiful historical museum
- Over $2,000 plus dollars worth of in-kind sponsorships from theatre tickets, beauty box kits and book bundles for my lucky draw prizes
- Cash sponsorships to cover F&B, deco and logistics cost
If you look at the time when I organised my first virtual summit, my LinkedIn profile states that I was jobless for 7 months (I was in the entrepreneurship closet ha!), my official Facebook had only 3 posts, and again I was nobody on this digital space - just this ‘Rashidah girl’. My speakers have never heard about me and yet I seem to attract high profile collaborators who was on BBC, Forbes and Wall Street Journal.
In both of these cases, I have zero credibility, no audience and no presence. But what I do have is my ability to make partners excited to be part of my event and trust me.
I know you might think that you need to have the perfect proposal and invitation email, or maybe even data and statistics - while those thing can help, you don't need them to have a successful event.
One of my clients think that he needs a “professional invitation webpage letter” to appear more credible so that they can have high quality speakers. Another client thinks that he need “an experienced events professional in their team” to secure sponsors so that these sponsors will actually trust them to run a successful event since it's a new company. All not true. I recommend working on making your event mission and impact great so that you can put yourself in an awesome position to magnetise amazing partners and speakers easily.
2. You don’t need thousands of dollars to organise an event
Yes, this is easy if you are doing a virtual summit because online event is definitely low cost, but what if I tell you that this is true for in-person events too? The beauty of event partnerships is that people want to be part of your event and will gladly pay to attend, sponsor or speak. You don't really need tons of money to make your event happen, what you really need is to create such a great event that you attract partnerships super easily (it's also why I always emphasise that the planning phase is the most important!)
3. Organising events CAN be easy and super FUN to organise
Remember the last time you participated in a virtual summit? You probably were so excited to see what the event has to offer, and can't wait to hear certain speakers?
If I guessed right, it means that it's the same expectation your audience have!
So chill, take the pressure off and have FUN planning your event because chances are, your audiences are super excited to see what you put together for them ❤️️
If you are hitting a roadblock and not too sure what your next steps are, there are tons of resources out there to help you plan your Virtual Summit - blog articles, youtube tutorials, virtual workshops. If you need support and help to save time and energy - you can hire virtual assistants, content writers or IT freelancers on Fiverr. And if you need to tap on high level event expertise and strategies to make your event's success predictable, you got me. So let go of the idea that event planning has to be hard and have FUN.