Given the current event landscape, is it smart to push for a multi-year contract with your venue?
Here are 3 tips to keep in mind as you ponder a venue negotiation approach:
1. Know Your Attendees
It’s important to look at your attendee demographics and preferences. Is your venue in a central location for everyone or will a certain group be forced to travel further every year? Do your attendees like a change of scenery or are they more comfortable knowing the lay of the land in a familiar venue? Don’t guess at these important answers; make it easy on yourself and survey your attendees. Not everyone will respond, but the ones who do, are the ones who are opinionated!
2. Understand Risky Business
There are pros and cons to booking the same venue for multiple years. On the plus side, the venue becomes familiar with your program, and they can learn from their experiences with your group to continuously improve their service year after year. A possible con is that if you figure out the hotel layout just doesn’t work for your program or the staff gave sub-par service, you’re stuck with them. There is no way of truly knowing these things until you’re onsite, so be sure to negotiate a great deal to compensate for your risk.
3. Go Big
If you decide that a multi-year venue contract is preferred, the old adage “nothing ventured, nothing gained” comes to mind. If your strategic goals align with a multi-year event plan, then a lot may be gained. Before entering negotiations, determine what you’re asking for and, of those items, which are your highest priority. Be creative with your requests! There are a lot of meaningful ways to “sweeten the pot” outside the normal requests and properties are often willing to wheel-and-deal on items that impact your bottom line if they’re guaranteed the business for multiple years.
Working with a venue sourcing and negotiation expert ensures you have thought of everything and will leave nothing to chance and nothing on the table. An expert can leverage buying power to ensure you get a much more favorable deal than one you could likely negotiate on your own. When venue sourcing services are complimentary to you (as they are with us at EventPrep), it simply doesn’t make sense to go it alone.
Questions? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll share with you additional tips and tactics to ensure you are in the most advantageous position.