December 17, 2015
Budgeting can certainly be one of those things that feels like a lot of work and is often viewed as the boring part of event organising. Well, it just so happens to be a very important element to ensuring you have a successful event and one that actually produces profit for you to take home and buy those nice things you’ve been dreaming of. So, let’s get to it.
Before you start getting too excited about how good it feels to throw money down on inflatable castles, waterslides or the world’s biggest pyrometrics show, do some math. Calculate a realistic projected revenue from your ticket sales and work backwards. This way you can be sure that you won’t overspend on production, talent and marketing/PR. By being in control of your budget with a clear overview of your costs as you get closer to your event is going to save you a lot of time trying to decipher if you’re under/over budget, not to mention a few less grey hairs appearing when it comes to game day. Take control of planning and enjoy the success that will come.
30/30/30 – Marketing budget
It’s always a tricky question as to how much money to spend on marketing your event. There isn’t one correct answer for this, but if you work to 15% of your projected revenue then you’ll find yourself in a good position. Take this marketing budget and split it into roughly thirds and allocate the first third to launching the on-sale, the next third for a second phase spend to continue to push ticket sales, and the final third for that last run into show day to really ensure the public knows your event is just around the corner. The idea behind this is that if you have a hugely popular on-sale and sell all your tickets out in a flash, you haven’t committed too much money and can reallocate that into either your pocket or improved production.
Let’s look at this as the fun part of managing your budget. Alway strive to gain more from a media partner or outlet by negotiating more from the original proposal. If a print ad is the first thing that is offered, push for some online banners, editorial content or running a competition via their social media channels. If you don’t ask you don’t get and you must remember, they want your advertising money! Push for deals, added value and play a little hard-ball. You’re more in control than you might think.
Keep a contingency
There will always be unexpected costs appearing in the lead up to your event, it’s almost inevitable. This is why reserving a contingency of 5-10% of your total budget is essential to ensuring you don’t run into any surprises that you can’t handle. It can also be the difference between you breaking even so be smart and always cover your backside with a small buffer. Let’s keep your reputation as a successful event organiser intact.