As the world braces for the impact of a global pandemic, the events industry has been dramatically impacted. So in a time of government-sanctioned restrictions on public gathers, how can you best handle postponing your event to a later date? This is a question facing thousand of events globally. So we have put together a quick guide to help you gracefully postpone your event to a future date.
Communicate Your Plan to Internal Stakeholder
Before you communicate with attendees, you need to ensure all your internal stakeholders are well informed. Everyone from your volunteers to your vendors to artists need to be informed of your plan, and you need to receive buy-in for your future event date. Without buy-in, you put your next event at risk. Providing a grace period of a few days before making the broader announcement allows your internal stakeholders time to adjust and ask questions, this ensures everyone is on the same page and ready to share a consistent message.
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Prepare All Web Collateral and Media Kits
This is the stage where you get all your ducks in a row. You want to ensure that all your channels are communicating the same message. You should plan on updating your website content, social media pages, and you should be preparing email messages, press releases and a media kit to spread the word to your attendees further. Make sure to have a good handle on your refund policy and be clear that you are postponing your event, not canceling it. Once all your content is created and reviewed, its time to set a launch date and time. That scheduled time should be shared with your stakeholders so they can prepare a plan to help get the word out.
Customer Service Team Mobilized
You will need to prepare a team of staff to be ready to answer a high volume of questions from your attendees once the announcement is made. To save business, you will want to ensure your team is communicating the same messages to them when they call in. The goal for the team will be to alleviate anxiety and re sure attendees that the event they purchased a ticket for will still take place, simply on a different date. Excellent customer service is imperative here; you want to maintain a good rapport with your customers, even in a time of uncertainty.
Announce and Spread the Word
Its go time! Once you have announced your event is being postponed, it is essential to get your press releases in hands of media outlets—prioritizing media like Eventbrite and other event-specific websites where attendees will be looking to for information. Ask your artists and influencers to share your announcement on social media , this will ensure that fans are receiving the message loud and clear.
In this time of uncertainty, all of us in the events industry are in this together. At InitLive, we know it takes months of planning to get an event off the ground. That why we have created a Covid-19 guarantee; we are here to help.