21 Mar Event Management with Podio
Posted at 16:42h in Business
I wish I had known about Podio for event management when I first dipped my toes into the world of event management and production back in 2011. I was a newish mom to a 3-year-old son and a newborn daughter.
I had a dynamic new business partner who had the vision to take my online family event listing resource and expand it to include digital and print publications as well as a tradeshow for expectant moms and those with kids under 5.
Together we worked tirelessly for months to develop everything. This included branding and website development; securing a venue; finding vendors, entertainers and speakers; building excitement via social media, sorting out logistics and more. Together we ran very successful events.
After that introduction into event management, the excitement and passion for tradeshows and events never disappeared. Since then, I’ve gone on to help out with either as a volunteer or contractor at a range of events including:
- Vendor at The Vancouver Healthy Family Expo
- Sales, Vendor Support and Registration at The BC Interior Sportsman Show
- Various roles with Inspired Word Cafe
- Classe Speciale Captain at Axel Mercks Gran Fondo
- Project Lead for Shoe Bank Canada’s My Canvas Has Laces
- Speaker Onboarding/Management Development for Social Media Marketing World
- Speaker Concierge at Social Media Marketing World
Back when I was producing my own events, I hadn’t yet discovered ways to manage all the operational and logistical aspects outside of spreadsheets except for an embedded registration form on my WordPress website and PayPal to accept payments.
Like many event managers, I was caught up in a flurry of spreadsheets and a binder to keep track of everything. This was often overwhelming and took a lot of administrative time.
I’ve since discovered and fallen in love with Podio. This is a customizable and affordable online business management tool. Peta and I have now implemented this system for many businesses in a range of industries. These include event management, e-commerce, product development, manufacturing, non-profit, digital marketing, real estate and consulting.
In this post, I’ll focus on how Podio can help solve some of the many challenges that event producers face.
Challenge: How to Track Contacts
Are you currently keeping track of your vendors, volunteers and contacts in a spreadsheet or standalone CRM system? How do you keep track of the current status of each contact and where they are in the sales and/or customer lifecycle?
Podio’s customizable CRM can help you keep track of all your contacts and categorize them by whether they are a lead, a confirmed client, or any other stages that are relevant to your business.
Separate your contacts into different areas – one for vendors, another for speakers. Keep track of your volunteers and staff in another area. My grandma always said, “…there’s a place for everything and everything in its place.”
Challenge: What’s the Status?
Do you find it hard to associate what speaker has registered, or what vendor still needs to pay you for their space? Do you have a standalone registration form (either in Google Forms, Wufoo or some other form software) but would like to keep all your information together?
With Podio’s built-in form feature, you can create forms, embed them on your website and automatically match the form submission with the relevant contact.
If you want to get fancy it’s even possible to set up automated workflows so that key staff members are assigned tasks or receive notifications when a form submission is received.
Challenge: Who Needs What?
Does it feel overwhelming to keep track of all the special needs for your contacts? Is your spreadsheet filled with tabs for everything from A/V requirements to booth supplies or speaking schedules?
You can create an app for almost any piece of information you’d like to keep track of. Event schedules, forms for supplies/speaking requirements, marketing management and more.
This is only the tip of the iceberg on how Podio can help you keep track of all the moving parts for your event or conference. It’s easy to use, cost-effective and secure. It will help you sleep better at night knowing how much time you’ll save in the long-run.