With football games, drama performances, and graduation ceremonies, there’s always some kind of school event to plan. However, as wonderful as school events are, they can be extremely hard to plan and execute—especially if you’re a teacher or administrator tasked with planning an event on top of your daily responsibilities.
There’s so much you need to consider. How will you manage the registration and payment process? What’s the best way to promote the event to students, parents, and the community as a whole? How can you choose the right venue to accommodate the guest list? What about putting together a precise, organized seating chart? The whole process can be overwhelming, to say the least.
With all that said, the good news is that with some careful planning and the help of the right digital solution, you can execute a memorable event that goes off without a hitch. Here are eight tips for seamlessly executing high school events:
1. Develop a master event plan in advance.
When you’re tasked with putting together a major school event, proactive planning goes a long way. Last-minute planning is extremely stressful, and the chances of something going wrong increase tenfold when you’re racing against the clock. If you take a proactive approach and develop a master plan in advance, your event will be much more likely to go smoothly.
The master plan for your event should include all the logistics: information about the venue, the date and time, how you’ll handle communications, what the ticketing and the payment process will look like, and all of the other details that go into successfully executing a major high school event. Thinking through each of these elements will help you stay organized throughout the planning process.
2. Offer online registration and payment.
With the help of an event management solution, you can offer online registration and payment options. Parents and other event attendees largely prefer mobile-friendly options to register and pay for a ticket, as it saves a trip for them when they can order the tickets online—but it’s not only a perk for attendees.
By offering the option for attendees to register, order tickets, and pay online, you can also make your own life easier. A digital registration and payment solution can streamline your event, automate manual processes, and provide you with a comprehensive, up-to-date list of attendees. Most importantly, it frees up time that you would otherwise spend chasing down ticket payments and managing the list manually.
3. Send digital invitations and reminders.
One of the best ways to seamlessly execute a high school event is to send customized invitations and confirmation emails. These should include all the important details about the event, including the location, the date and time, and other relevant information. Also, make it a point to send follow-ups to those who don’t respond. By sending both email and text reminders, you can increase the number of RSVPs to the event and ensure you’re reaching your attendees where they’re most active—on their mobile devices.
4. Use a digital ticketing system.
Today’s digital ticketing systems make it easier to manage tickets at an event. By offering digital ticketing options for the high school event, you can make the experience easier for guests—and easier for yourself in the process.
Digital tickets can be scanned directly from smartphones for a fast, easy check-in experience. By offering guests the alternative option to print physical tickets, you can make ticketing convenient for everyone and environmentally friendly by eliminating the need for paper. And say goodbye to lost tickets—there’s no such thing when they’re digital.
5. Set venue and student ticket limits.
It’s always a good idea to put a cap on the number of event tickets sold to account for the venue’s capacity limits. Doing this helps you eliminate errors, such as overselling tickets to the event and dealing with refunds. It also helps you avoid unwelcome surprises on the day of the event, such as the venue being over capacity. In addition to setting venue capacity limits, you may want to limit access to students and guests. This helps ensure that only eligible students can register for and attend school-only events.
6. Utilize interactive seat planning.
Seating charts are a time-consuming job. That’s why it’s a great option to take the headache out of seating assignments with an interactive seat map. Doing this allows guests to choose their own seating based on their preferences and frees you from having to do so. Alternatively, you can utilize an interactive seat map to assign guests seats—a much easier process than the manual way.
7. Offer discount and donation opportunities.
In addition to a secure, online payment process, consider offering discount and donation opportunities. You can significantly boost attendance for your high school event by offering early-bird specials and group discounts. Another great option is to share promotional codes to offer discounts to a specific group, such as the high school’s students.
You can also provide the option for guests to leave additional donations to help fund the event and/or the school itself. This allows you to create stretch goals and increases what you can do with the event you’re planning, as well as any you plan in the future.
8. Learn from past events.
Always make it a point to learn from your past events to better inform your future high school event planning. You can do this by reviewing past attendance reports and sending out surveys to invite feedback from event attendees. Your findings will help you optimize future event planning, ensuring seamless execution of each and every high school event.
Ease the event planning process.
Planning and executing a high school event takes time, but the process can be less stressful with proactive planning and the right event management solution. If you’re tasked with planning a high school event and struggling to get everything done, download our free event planning checklist. It’s a handy guide that covers everything you’ll need to execute a seamless and memorable high school event.