Thursday, April 21, 2011

New Industry Can Help You Plan Your Next Event

While most people think of event planning as orchestrating large scale events, event planning is a part of everyone's calendar throughout the year.  Birthdays and holidays, family vacations and even setting up a girls or guys nite out require some planning.  And we all know that there is usually one friend who is saddled with the task of heading up the whole event.  Not surprisingly, I have happily taken on that role for my family and friends- I planned a surprise bar crawl with matching t shirts & bar specials for my boyfriend's birthday a few years ago and last year a surprise weekend trip to Cooperstown, NY and for my sister, a surprise ghost tour outting for her last birthday.  But what happens if you want to plan something different but don't know what to do or where to go?

Enter the newest & fast growing industry which makes event planning easy.  Companies like LivingSocial & Groupon merge social media marketing with coupons/sales deals to offer a new level of convenience to consumers as well as a whole new marketing approach for businesses.  Yes it is convenient that the service is free and you can sign up for as many geographic areas as you want to receive daily deal emails for, but it is so much more than that.  I love that more & more diverse companies are offering deals and more importantly, getting their service out to the public.  There is even a family division for specific family friendly activities.  Planning a girls weekend- how about a winery tasting and spa treatments?  Have an adrenaline junkie brother- how about drag racing lessons for his birthday?  There really is no range for what type of services are being offered, today I received a deal for a glass blowing class in Baltimore.

I will admit that while I don't buy most deals, at least a couple times a week I file the daily deal email to save the activity & company info for later.  Skydiving, brewery tour, large inflatable outdoor movie screen company, a hot air balloon ride and a pirate cruise ship are just a few of the great activities I'm now keeping in my back pocket.  There is no minimum amount of deals that you are required to purchase and if you don't like the deal, just delete it from your inbox.  If you do like the deal but don't have an event coming up, saving the daily deal emails will save you from brainstorming later.  By looking into different cities, you can plan a trip around an event that you would not normally hear about in your hometown.  And last but not least, as an added bonus, if three of your friends buy your deal as referred by you, you get your deal for free on LivingSocial! 

Still, there will always be logistics for your designated friend/family planner to sort out, but this emerging market is a great solution to branch out of your typical activities and take the brainstorming out of small scale event planning.  Enjoy!

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