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The last few months can’t possibly be described as anything other than entirely eventful for the StartUp Bahrain ecosystem, we had Bahrain Tech Week back in September, Manama Entrepreneurship Week back in October, and, Global Entrepreneurship Week in November, and none of the events and networking filled “weeks”, were shorter than 10 days. Some events were rather impressive, others left us well, speechless, so we wondered, what actually makes a good startup event?

Find out your objectives, what is the outcome you are expecting from this event? What are you trying to present to the people, how many attendees are you aiming for, what makes your event different from the dozen other startup event, and whether or not the event is merely a platform you would like to use to enhance the brand profile of your company, the questions you have to answer shift to, what kind of people would you want to be attendance, and what you would like to be known as.

The Venue, how important is the location, you ask? Well, it determines all of 3 things, the size of your event, how many people would deem your event interesting enough to attend, and finally, how many people will actually end up coming, and that my friends, should not be confused with the former. If your venue could speak to the audience, what would you like it to say? The venue is one of the most important aspects, as it’s size also dictates how people move around and network, the more spacious it is, the more it encourages collaboration and discussion, add to that the elements of lighting and the acoustics into consideration to help both in the technical sense as well as the general feel and ambience of the event.  #FoodForThought.

Be an ambassador, we don’t expect you to actually become a diplomat of a high ranking (even though that would be very helpful), what we mean is, represent your event, promote it and humanize it through the use of word of mouth, as well as advertising it through your personal social media platforms, and mailers. We can help you with this, all you need to do is ask! Make sure to always tag us and find the latest information by using #StartUpBahrain

Figure out your budget, in the sense of how much money and time you can afford to spend, big dreams are only pipe dreams if you don’t have the dime bags to support them, and assuming that you’re at a stage at which your main focus should remain on spending most of your time, energy and resources wisely, you’ll need to adjust and learn how to make the budget work for you, by planning accordingly, instead of you working to fit yourself in a budget that may or may not be spent all at a few expenses, if not, leave you needing extra cash a short while after the event. Which brings us to the next point;

Try to get a sponsor, or 3, while this is not a must, it can be of great result and value, not only will you have extra resources at your disposal, it will also be an excellent method for your event to be recognized, gain credibility, and access a wider audience. On a side note, the sponsorship doesn’t always have to be, nor should it be just limited to finances, it could also come in the form of organizing giveaways, providing the food and beverages, or even the venue and can be shown in a way other than plastering a logo on a poster or forcing an innocent soul that just came to enjoy the event, to give a speech on behalf of the sponsor, be a little more creative please. Thank you, next.

Giveaways, which most attendees might lose at one point or another of that day, if not the following week, so try your best not to waste money on items people will most likely not keep, on the other hand, depending on the demographic in attendance, young professionals will cherish the stash of memorabilia, whether it be the mugs they will use at the office, the pens that will get them through the day, the hard drives, portable phone chargers and highlighters they will never let go of and will most likely thank you for all the while promoting your brand throughout.

Food and delicacies, one of the (arguably) most important elements that help give your event an extra push, keep in mind, hungry people are not happy people, making sure there are bites to eat is the main unspoken rule in pretty much every household in Bahrain, and your event is no different, they’re coming to your territory, and as their host, your job is to let them leave with a good taste in their mouth, literally. Don’t forget to support your local Bahraini business while you’re at it, the best food at the best price.

Make sure your event doesn’t overlap and add it to the calendar

And here’s an extra pro-tip for you, always make sure you check that your event doesn’t overlap someone else’s (you can check our calendar for that), always make sure you have the right speakers for the right topics, if you’re having a panel discussion or a talk, and, bare in mind, it is up to you to market your event right, and StartUp Bahrain will always be here to help you spread the word!

We are also obliged to be cliche and tell you, to have fun! At the end of the day, you’re trying to celebrate in the middle of all the chaos, adventure, and possibilities that are at the core of being a part of the startup ecosystem, why throw a party you can’t enjoy?

Do you have any tips for us to follow? Share your experience, thoughts, and insight into what makes or breaks a startup event with us! And, if you have something you want to share with the StartUp Bahrain Community? Then feel free to contribute by sending us an email and have your voice be heard!