I'm pretty sure there is a long standing debate about event planners, coordinators, producers and any other name you can think of that people might refer to us as. However, I continue to run into people that call them selves event planners, but they just aren't. Yesterday, I was doing a memorial service walk through at a local church and the guy I met with couldn't believe that they hired an event planner to help them, because after all he was a coordinator. Seriously? He is a venue coordinator. He opens the building, knows where the lights are, can make the screen go down. But he couldn't answer questions about lighting, and sound, and power and other various options. I guess he had their phone number, but did he call? Nope, just gave me the numbers.
This happens often at other venues where the "event coordinator" gives you the contact info to the caterer, the AV guys, bar service etc... when its technically all done "in house." They always seem to be baffled that my clients hire me, because after all they are an "event coordinator".
For those of you that might be in need, or just curious, here are 5 reasons why clients hire us and not an "event coordinator":
1. We come prepared with ideas that meet our clients needs and goals. Not simply ask how many guests there will be and make sure there are enough seats.
2. We incorporate our clients brand and personality through creative branding, messaging and communication.
3. We incorporate purpose into our events. Giving clients and attainable ROI on their event, not just an expense when all said and done.
4. Our events are different every time. Venue Event Coordinators just repeat the same thing over and over again and get frustrated when you do something different.
5. Our events are well produced, well executed and creative. This comes from working with clients for many hours about their event and asking the right questions to deliver the right message. Coordinators care about how many people are coming and do you need a registration table. They are not responsible for creative content or execution.
Hope this helps define our role and purpose. Event Planners of all sorts are not the same, we are not all created equal just because we might all fit into one term. As a client, do your research and really identify where your needs are. Do you need help just coordinating some details? Or are you looking for an event that encompasses your brand and mission? Knowing what you are getting and why will save you money in the long run by really getting what you need and want.
Multi Day Conferences, Special Events and Fundraisers