Alright, so you decided you will go ahead and produce your first event. You envision all the money you will make for your cause or charity. You envision a sea of runners standing before you as you fire the race gun heralding in a new event to your local community. It all sounds great.
But then you take a step back and ask yourself a simple question. “How can I do this, I’ve never produced any organized event before.” Before you get so overwhelmed, that you decide to do something else, take a step back. Relax, breathe, do whatever you need to do and read on.
Producing an event is hard for sure. But it is not impossible. Calculating how much money you’ll make is easy, and of course fun. But temper your expectations. Expect less runners and higher expenses. But you can still make some decent money for your charity. The bottom line is if you work hard, do a lot of research, ask for help and be patient, then you’ll be fine.
First and foremost, start planning by creating a rough estimate of your income statement. How many runners do you think you can attract? To answer that question, look at some similar race results in your area. Then add about 10% to that number of finishers, because that’s how many (if not more) will sign up but never run. Now that you have a rough estimate of how many runners you will attract, you need to estimate what you can charge them.
Charge them too much and you’ll attract very few. Charge too little and you’ll need a lot of runners to cover expenses. Again, compare what your “competition” is charging. After all, if there are five races to choose from on a given weekend, price will be a factor in which event runners ultimately select.
Now that you have an estimate of total revenue, the not so fun part is estimating expense. If your organization has a lot of over achievers who can ask for donations, then exhaust their efforts. Ask them to get anything you need donated. But realize, just because you are a charity for instance, doesn’t mean everyone will be willing to donate. You are not the only group asking for a donation. As a former business owner I can tell you, the requests for free product is never ending.
Some expenses you’ll incur include t-shirts and printing. Shop around and get a few quotes. You’ll be surprised, when you include printing, how much quotes can vary. Police details are another expense. There is no short cut here. Safety is critical and most cities and towns have contracts they need to work within for how much your police expense will “run.”
Race numbers can likely be donated through your local specialty run shop. Grocery stores often donate food to anyone willing to pick it up late night on certain days. Liability insurance is a must have and you’ll be surprised how inexpensive it is. Other expenses include water for aid stations and the finish, though you may get it donated but it’s not expensive either. Miscellaneous supplies for volunteers from pens and pencils (pens don’t work well in outside freezing cold weather), rubber gloves and more can often be donated if you ask around.
So you can see there is a bit to think of. But take it one step at a time. Don’t get overwhelmed. But also, don’t get overly optimistic. Events are like businesses. They take time to evolve, to understand what your customers want and time to grow. But with hard work and patience, you’ll be a step ahead of your competition.
Submitted by ExpertRaces.com
ExpertRaces.com is a website for event directors, which is produced and maintained by Expert Performance, a US manufacturer of technical event shirts. With over 20 colors to choose from, product always in stock and ready to ship the same day you order, Expert can play a vital role in the success of your event.
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