Updated: September 2023
A conference is a fairly large event to organise which requires a range of features to be successful. One of the most important features which will influence a conference is the venue. It will be a staple before, during and after the event. Ensure you and your team put time into finding the perfect conference venue which has the features you’ll need for success.
There’s a variety of things to think about and depending on your type of conference, you will have different needs. The venue is typically one of the first things you’ll decide on. You’ll need to have made this decision before organising caterers, advertising tickets and inviting speakers to attend.
Ideally, you can do these things as soon as possible, so taking steps to decide on an event venue is vital. We’ve created a guide on what makes a good conference venue, to give you the best start possible for your event.
What Makes a Good Conference Venue?
- Excellent Transport Links
- Onsite Accommodation
- Ample Free Parking
- Conference Amenities
- Branding and Perceived Value
- Professional Staff Members
Finding the right conference centre is paramount for the success of any event. The choice of venue can significantly impact the attendee experience, logistical efficiency, and overall event outcomes. With 80.4% of event organisers believing that events are the most critical marketing channel for achieving business goals, it is crucial to find a suitable conference venue that accommodates your number of attendees, provides necessary amenities, and offers a conducive atmosphere.
Understanding what makes a good conference venue, such as considering location, facilities, technology, and accessibility, allows you to create a seamless and memorable conference experience. Making an informed decision in venue selection ensures that your event runs smoothly, leaves a positive impression on attendees, and ultimately achieves its objectives, whether it’s networking, knowledge-sharing, or fostering business relationships.
1. Excellent Transport Links
Choose a conference venue that has plenty of transport links and is conveniently located to maximise turnout. If your guests are travelling from afar to attend your conference, having onsite accommodation is really useful. It shows that you’ve thought ahead about your delegates and have taken their comfort and ease into understanding.
2. Onsite Accommodation
Onsite accommodation is a valuable feature for conferences, especially when dealing with a large number of attendees. When hosting a substantial conference, local hotels often become fully booked well in advance, creating significant challenges for attendees who need to secure lodging.
By offering onsite accommodation options, conference organisers ensure a seamless experience for their guests. This convenience not only simplifies the travel logistics but also enhances the overall quality of the conference, fostering networking opportunities and ensuring attendees’ comfort and security.
3. Ample Free Parking
Even things that seem small such as free onsite parking can make a massive difference to delegates, particularly in a big city. Providing complimentary parking eliminates the inconvenience and expense associated with finding and paying for parking elsewhere, which can be a major deterrent for attendees.
It ensures that participants have easy access to the conference venue, enhancing their overall experience and reducing potential stress associated with urban travel. This thoughtful amenity reflects positively on the conference, demonstrating an understanding of attendees’ needs and making it more attractive for those who have travelled to be part of the event.
4. Conference Amenities
During your site visit ask staff for a comprehensive list of amenities which they can provide for you. This includes things like screens, lights, acoustics, sound quality and even the basics such as tables chairs and food. Ideally, you need the latest in technology, especially if it’s a business conference. Remember the venue and its amenities will reflect on you, and potentially your organisation.
If you use social media to market your conference, the venue will forever be connected with your branding, so be mindful before making decisions. Depending on the size of your event, you may need extras like security guards. If the venue doesn’t provide them, it means you have to outsource so consider the impact this will have on your budget.
A flexible venue tends to be one that’s easier to work with. If you are considering a few dates, let the potential venues know during the meetings and see if they are willing to accommodate. Everyone likes something for nothing, so see what added extras or features they could offer you.
Whether this is certain discounts or freebies, ask in advance what benefits you have the potential to receive. In return, the venue will receive advertising from your marketing campaigns and social media photos. You will also need to know that this event space can handle the number of people you want in the way that you want your conference laid out, whether that’s using extra rooms or one large one.
6. Branding and Perceived Value
All aspects of your event will go towards the image of your event. Your venue especially will be a reflection on your conference and influence the sort of press it receives. Ensure you choose somewhere which reflects the sort of branding you want to achieve.
Create a shortlist of potential venues and conduct site visits. This will ensure you get a general feel of the location, staff and amenities before making a final decision. If you’re being sponsored or have well-known faces appearing, consider how they will perceive your chosen venue. You want to ensure it’s appealing to those who will potentially want to invest in your conference.
7. Professional Staff Members
Having a strong team of people behind the conference will amplify a successful conference. Prepare a team who have a range of skills including organisation, design, marketing and social media. Have an initial kick-off meeting so everyone can take on a task and have a full understanding of their role. Regular meetings help to ensure everyone is on the same page with their tasks and decisions.
When thinking about the venue you’re hiring, always consider staff members. During the site meeting, meet the staff and get a grasp of their experience in holding corporate conferences. You need a team who ideally has held your conference style before and has intimate knowledge of their venue. This can help you make the most of the conference and get the most for your budget.
Ask to see any case studies or examples of events they’ve hosted to ensure it’s up to your standard and follows the right image. A sit-down meeting is ideal so everyone can communicate and get what they need. Ensure you prepare so you can give staff members a complete understanding of what you’re asking and what you need from the venue.
Conference Room Hire in Staffordshire
At Yarnfield Park in Staffordshire, we have hosted many conferences and have a wealth of knowledge to draw from. We have familiarity with our venue to ensure you get the most from it. Our team are both friendly and experienced and can work alongside you to ensure your event is a success.
Our conference venue offers a range of benefits including comfortable accommodation, ample onsite parking and catering options. If you would like further information, to speak to our team or to book, please don’t hesitate to get in contact with us today. We look forward to hearing from you.Go back to other articles