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The Operations Team:  Plans, Timelines, and Interrelationships

The Operations Team: Plans, Timelines, and Interrelationships

There is one underlying aspect of each festival and event that is similar. It is the work that goes on behind the scenes....the world of event operations. Operations is the glue that keeps all the components moving and ties the interrelationship of all the various event aspects. 
Start With Why -  Memorable Moments, Branding, and Community

Start With Why - Memorable Moments, Branding, and Community

The International Festivals and Events Association recently held its annual conference. It is a way for scholars and top festival and events staff and board members to network and learn current trends and new ideas for festivals and events and the organizations that run them. Each year, there are some takeaways, and 2018 was no exception.

The festivals and events industry brings the spirit of a place to life. It connects the attendees to a community. The attendees might be their own community , but it also allows for engagement of a city or town. It is vital to be able to showcase a public spirit and help create what is possible in the community through imagination.
 
Successful Boards and Fundraising:  No Money, No Mission

Successful Boards and Fundraising: No Money, No Mission

Someone recently recommended the book The Fundraising Habits of Supremely Successful Boards by Jerold Panas to me recently and I picked it up. Little did I know that less than a week later, it was announced that Mr. Panas had passed away. Most fundraisers know of his books and writings and he is always someone you would make sure you heard speak at various conferences and seminars. He is one of the legends in fundraising.
What was interesting is that this book had some various ideas for nonprofit boards to practice, especially regarding fundraising. This is important for any nonprofit organization and there were great takeaways on what is needed for good board members.
 
Sponsorship Trends in 2018 - Content is King!

Sponsorship Trends in 2018 - Content is King!

Recently I had the opportunity to attend the IEG/ESP conference on sponsorships. It was nice to get to Chicago, despite the cold and the snow. (It was a change from Florida and my second snowfall in 7 years!) The conference is a great event that has brands and properties discuss the current trends in sponsorships with the brands and properties providing real examples and case studies. There were some surprising takeaways from the conference that reflect the industry and what is happening now in 2018. 
Starting Your Development Effort - Knowing Your Fans

Starting Your Development Effort - Knowing Your Fans

Any organization has its supporters. There are those individuals that volunteer, attend events, and even serve on the board. Knowing more about your fan base is important to the start of a good development effort. 
More Than a Resolution - Organizational Management and Standards

More Than a Resolution - Organizational Management and Standards

I have been tied up lately with some family issues and have not sat down to work on blogs since the fall. The work that I have been doing to help get my parent’s paperwork and files in order made me realize that this is something vital, not only for myself, but for any organization. Getting this family paperwork in order made me realize how easy it is to do for others, but not yourself. Even more importantly, what about the organization where you work? 
Know Your Building Blocks - Start With the End in Mind

Know Your Building Blocks - Start With the End in Mind

A nonprofit or festival needs to evolve. This happens over time and there is a life cycle for organizations. There is one issue that transcends all stages of the life cycle, whether an organization is new, growing, or mature. With each of these scenarios, as change occurs, it is important to remember the foundation and structure of the organization and its role in change. 
After the Festival Ends - Lessons Learned

After the Festival Ends - Lessons Learned

After the holidays, it has been a whirlwind with a festival that I have been working on. Now the balloons have been filled with helium and brought down the street, the smell of funnel cakes, hamburgers, and hot dogs have left the air, and the merchandise has been sold and final inventories taken. As always, it is time for a debrief meeting and some lessons learned. I realize these are not rocket science, but some things we as festival and event people sometimes take for granted. 
Business Partners Are an Extension of Your Brand

Business Partners Are an Extension of Your Brand

Last month I discussed how the foundation of your brand ties to the organization’s strategic plan as the mission, vision and core values plays an important part in defining the brand. As an organization moves forward, it is important for it to understand how to make the brand come to life and also how it relates to various partnerships and business transactions.
 
Mission, Vision and Values:  The Foundation for Your Brand

Mission, Vision and Values: The Foundation for Your Brand

I recently attended the International Festivals and Events Association (IFEA) conference. One of the major takeaways was in regards to building the brand for your organization.
With any organization, it is important to know why your organization exists. This relates to having a solid mission, vision, and core values. The mission statement explains why the organization exists. The vision is a way to describe the long term objectives. Most importantly, the core values of the organization are guiding principles to help manage decisions and behavior.
 
Digital is Vital For Your Sponsorship Program

Digital is Vital For Your Sponsorship Program

IEG is the industry leader on sponsorships and how to value them. They provide consulting and have a yearly conference for sponsors and properties. They recently published a paper on what sponsors are looking for in regards to benefits. Sponsorship spending in North America for festivals, fairs, and events is expected to rise 2.1% to over $878 million this year. That still lags behind sports, entertainment, causes and the arts.  
Building Engagement

Building Engagement

How important is engagement amongst your audience and fans? For a nonprofit, and especially one that is a festival or an event, it can be critical. The audience and fans are the lifeblood of the organization. Building engagement among all your constituencies is a way to accelerate interest and knowledge about the organization, which can lead to improving resources. Below are some ideas on how to get started. 
5 Steps to Start a Philanthropic Effort

5 Steps to Start a Philanthropic Effort

I was recently working on the budget for a festival organization and it hit me. The income projections for the next year vary depending on factors that are not in our control. Beverage sales, merchandise sales, and entry fees are all dependent upon the marketing of the events, weather, and interest of attendees. Sponsorships can grow, but that also can be variable depending upon the economy and the goals and objectives of certain companies.  
Is Marketing Critical to Your Festival/Event or Even Your Organization?

Is Marketing Critical to Your Festival/Event or Even Your Organization?

Originally Published in ie: International Events magazine, Fall, 2016

“Everyone knows our festival.”

“We are a tradition – people know and expect it. The press will cover us.”

“We want to target millennials – so we should concentrate only on social media.”

“We do not need to spend money on marketing.”
 
The Power of Partnerships

The Power of Partnerships

There are times when the planets align and multiple events can be coordinated together. Partnerships are important with traditional nonprofits and many funders are looking for collaborations. This same idea can be used in the festival world as now many properties are partnering with cities to help identify the power of festivals for economic impact and improving the quality of life. 
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