Find Success in this Summer’s Events 

stir agency milwaukee

STIR Staff

Jun 20
Tips for Successful Summer Events, stir blog image of partiers

Summer is a glorious time that provides the chance for personal enjoyment as well as professional opportunities. Whether you are entertaining the public, clients or employees, a creative outdoor event can help boost brand exposure and camaraderie.  From company picnics to business promotion events, staging and marketing are key. Here are some tips to make your summer events a success.   

Know Your Purpose and Your Crowd 

Every epic event starts with a clear vision. Knowing your goals will guide your decisions and help you measure the event’s success. A key aspect of this is understanding your target audience. This is essential for tailoring your event to their preferences and expectations and will help you create a more engaging and relevant experience. It also influences how you will market and promote your event. For example, our client BAYSHORE leverages its great community green space to host annual summer concerts and family events that drive more shoppers and tons of publicity. 

Get Creative with Themes to Encourage Engagement 

A theme can be a powerful tool when planning an event. It can help connect people and keep attendees engaged. Back to the idea of knowing your target audience, they’re a main consideration when choosing a theme. It could be a simple idea like a summer luau or one that evokes the spirit of your company. Once you’ve decided on a theme, infuse it into the many elements of your event, like vibrant décor, bespoke cocktails or related food and interactive activities. 

Choose the Perfect Venue 

Summer is all about embracing the great outdoors, so take your event outside! We’re lucky to have Milwaukee’s lakefront at our disposal, and there are some great venues with indoor/outdoor spaces that showcase the view, like Coast. Lush gardens like The Mitchell Park Domes can also provide an immersive natural landscape just a stone’s throw from downtown.  

More than just ambiance, be sure to consider your event’s capacity, required amenities, including power supply or water availability, and accessibility as well as restroom facilities. Selecting the right venue sets the stage for a memorable experience. 

Get the Right Partners for The Important Stuff 

A comprehensive plan is the backbone of a successful event, second only to the partners you choose to help you carry it out. From logistics to audio-visual equipment setup to marketing, attention to detail can make or break your event. You’ll want to be sure you’ve vetted and chosen partners and suppliers with a proven track record.

It’s especially important to have a catering partner who knows their stuff and can offer a diverse array of menu options. An inclusive menu helps guests feel more welcome. Be sure your caterer can accommodate various allergies and dietary preferences like vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free. Local catering favorite Zilli Hospitality Group offers interactive food stations (think baked potato bar!) that add an element of novelty and excitement to the dining experience. 

Spread the Word and Set Up a Site   

Effective promotion and a marketing plan are key to attracting attendees to any event. If it’s a company picnic, you want people to attend because they’re interested, not because it’s mandatory. To build buzz around your event, use a mix of marketing channels, including social media, email marketing and advertising in your company’s newsletter or online. If it’s a local event, publish ads in local publications and partner with an agency to generate public relations or help you work with a social media influencer for promotion. Here are six things we recommend looking for when searching for a PR firm

Don’t forget to create a website or landing page for your event. Include a compelling description, event date and location, company info, relevant social media links, RSVP or ticket information and contact info. You should also include details about the schedule like entertainment and speakers, plus visuals like photos or videos from last year’s event. Testimonials from previous attendees can help build excitement and credibility.

Capture Memories for Social and the Future 

Be sure to document the event highlights. You can use photos for next year’s promotion or for brand awareness. It’s recommended to hire a professional event photographer. It’s also worthwhile to set up interactive photo ops that engage attendees, like photo booths or selfie stations. If you’re setting up one of these photo ops, brainstorm and provide branded hashtags for guests to use on social media the day of the event to amplify visibility. After the event, use photos for follow-up emails and social media posts, an important part of your event marketing plan and a great way to maintain engagement. 

Holding a successful event is an art and science with many moving parts. If you need help with marketing and advertising your event, reach out to Brian Bennett at We’ll help make this summer’s gathering one for the books!  

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