Improving booking experience at event venues

Posted on 17-09-2018

Many event organizers have trouble finding the perfect event venue in time. It takes too much time for an availability request and if they receive one it often still isn’t clear if the venue suits their needs.

Disclosing availability immediately reduces the chance that a potential client will continue scouting for other locations. Because the lead time is decreasing year after year they’ll want to find their perfect venue as quickly as possible.

Another problem we found early on in our research is that miscommunication is one of the most common errors in event planning. Messages are often incorrectly interpreted or passed on. Clients are unable to confirm if their comments and changes have been processed prior to the event.

An important motivation in the development of MICE Operations has always been to improve client satisfaction and staff efficiency, mainly through better communication. We found out that we could fulfill both of these goals by increasing the client’s involvement in planning the event. MICE Operations is the first product that allows clients access to their events in the venue’s event management system. The product enables clients to make (or request) changes to the event’s timeline, communicate personally with the event planner and review changes whenever she wants to.

MICE Operations allows clients to plan and book events through its innovative event planning tool, enabling clients to check availability and plan their event right from the venue’s website. The planning tool consists of two components; the widget, allowing clients to instantly check availability for a certain amount of guests on a certain date, and the interactive timeline, enabling clients to create and customize a timeline for their event and get an indication of the price.

The widget

Venues using the widget, implemented on their website save a lot of valuable time on availability requests and writing quotes. The submitted information will be processed in the next planning steps, so you won’t have to enter it repeatedly. The venue’s event planner will use the widget too when adding an event to the platform.

If the desirable composition is unavailable, the widget will propose a different set up and if a date is fully booked, the widget will propose alternative dates. The widget is linked to the platform’s property management, so the widget can display daily availability in real-time.

The widget comes in different shapes and sizes so it can easily be customized to your website’s design. After importing the venue's capacity chart, the widget is ready to use. After selecting the perfect date, set-up and number of participants, the client can start designing the event on the platform’s interactive timeline.

The interactive timeline

When the client has found an available date and set-up for her group, she can continue planning the event on the interactive timeline. This step of the process also includes other required booking information.

The timeline allows clients to plan an event into meticulous detail or superficially, if the client prefers to get in touch with one of the venue’s planners first. The activities and products on the timeline can be adjusted and will be instantly available to the venue’s event planners once the booking has been submitted. The timeline serves as a working document, enabling clients and planners to collaboratively plan the event and work out the details.

One of the important features of the interactive timeline is package selection. The available packages at the venue are presented to the client in the planning tool. This has proved to be a great marketing tool for the venue and saves the client time and money setting up the event from scratch.

If the client likes a certain package, she can select it and the activities and products in the package instantly show up on the timeline. The client can alter the contents or times of activities and add products if required.

Once the client has completed the first version of the event schedule, she confirms the booking and event planners will be notified of the incoming booking. More on that later!