From Fashions on the Field to Event Theming: 2016 Spring Racing Event Trends

The Spring Racing Carnival is the signature series of racing events in Australia. Inspired by this season’s fashions, Forum Group Events’ passionate experience creators have translated the catwalk styles into event theming looks that can be applied to corporate events of any scope. The most reknown on the racing events calendar is the Spring Racing Carnival including the illustrious race meets; Caulfield Cup Day, Cox Plate Day, Victoria Derby Day, Melbourne Cup Day, Stakes Day and Crown Oaks Day – the event carnival has become synonymous with glamorous fashion, indulgence in fine champagne and gorgeous interior designs within the corporate marquees and venues across the country. It’s time to think ahead and plan – which stylish event trends can you bring to your next corporate function.

Spring is in the air

Let the season be your inspiration. For corporate event planners, starting their preparations early, think bright, bold colours and native Australian flora. Forum Group Events’ team brings a wealth of styling ideas and creativity to any corporate event function. From coordinating the concept development, to sourcing the venue, props, flowers, display accessories,  furniture, artwork and even astro turf for the flooring – our team will help you pull together the spring look and feel. Use exaggerated racing props, customised signage and graphics and bold coloured furniture to ensure the Spring Carnival theme works for you.

Think Derby Day with a twist – Monochrome plus a colour

Black and white event themes have been a long time Spring Racing Carnival favourite. Inspired by the dress code for Derby Day, FGE can develop the monochrome event theme by using table linen and draping effectively. We will source fantastic props, for example metallic horseshoe centrepieces, that will make a statement when combined with a bouquet of spring foliage and add a mirrored base underneath for extra glamour. If you are looking to add in your corporate colours to the palette, monochrome can be broken up with a feature colour. FGE can advise on the racing day florals and colours weaving them into your event theme. Caulfield Cup Day features a white rose, Cox Plate Day has a Cecil Brunner rose, Victoria Derby Day has a blue cornflower, Melbourne Cup Day has a yellow rose and Crown Oaks day has a pink rose. FGE can boost your client engagement by organising a betting pool for your guests!


Rustic Country Racing Flare

The Forum Group Events team of experience creators will work with you to create an organic and authentic rustic event setting. We can source fantastic and on-theme props such as garden accessories like wheelbarrows, watering pots and herb gardens. Hay bales and corrugated iron walls will add to the look. This event trend can emphasise your commitment to sustainability when you use recycled paper invitations and stationery and even up-cycled decor pieces. For outdoor events, marquee sourcing and fit out can be arranged and FGE has access to a national network of strategic alliances to maximise the impact of your time and budget resources.

Dress for Success

To add some Spring Carnival authenticity to your corporate function advise your guests on an appropriate dress code.  Stylish hats and fanciful millinery for the ladies are always popular however, see our guide below for track side dress codes to suit your Spring Racing theme:

Derby Day – monochrome (black or white colour palette) for men and women’s wear. Melbourne Cup Day – bright and bold colour choices are welcome on this day. Crown Oaks Day – Ladies Day. Feminine fashions for the ladies are always in style on this racing day. Stakes Day – think summery, relaxed, family orientated race day wear.

Racing to plan an event?

Contact the Forum Group Events team to discuss your brief. From venue selection, theming and concept development, event marketing, project management and attendee engagement, the FGE team can elevate your brand and deliver a memorable event.


Social Media for Event Planners – Is it all worth it?

In this digital age there’s no longer much doubt for businesses regarding whether being on social media is a good idea. If nothing else, the exposure, visibility and connectivity offered by social media has convinced most business owners that its worth their while. But what are the implications for corporate event planners if any? And how much juice is worth the squeeze?

Multi-award winning event management organisation Forum Group Events (FGE) dedicates a significant portion of their marketing time promoting events, corporate news, achievements and engaging with clients and other stakeholders online via renown social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter. With multiple platforms reaching potentially different audiences the benefits are regularly reviewed to ensure there is some kind of return both financial and otherwise.

What is ROI when it comes to social media? Put simply it is any measurement of KPIs or metrics that prove your social media strategies are successful!

As with any other PR and marketing investment, the challenge has always been to measure the efficacy of a promotion in terms of sales. Analytics linking the correlation between an ad and an online sale are ideal but the direct benefits of social media presence alone are not always tangible.  The measurement of success may be assessed non-financially when observing an increase in brand awareness via engagement metrics such as ‘likes’, ‘comments’, ‘retweets’, ‘shares’ or accrued numbers of ‘followers’.

Social media broadcasting short cuts are now available and dashboards such as Hootsuite are saving digital marketers time in pushing their communications out to various mediums simultaneously. Essentially this suite of tools helps you work your content smarter not harder thus saving you time. It also ensures some consistency across your brand messaging.

When compared to the alternative of paid advertising in trade media and main stream media, the benefits of using an ‘owned’ marketing channel via a social media platform is certainly tempting to most small to medium corporations. Combined with the potential risk to brands if customers can’t locate or engage with a business or event in the social media web scape, it seems that the costs will have to be absorbed in order to avoid any possible damage to the brand.

Plan First Measure Later

In order to measure ROI initial planning is needed. Similar to your marketing or PR strategies and plans; social media objectives and reporting metrics need to be considered up front.  Event managers should treat every event as a unique business to be promoted and attendees engaged so as to maximise the effectiveness of the investment in hosting the event.

Set Goals ROI can be measured in a variety of ways: through customer acquisition, lead generation, clicks, revenue, contest entries, etc but the success of it all depends on your goals. Before you can track and measure your ROI, you need to determine your goals so you know which factors you’re measuring and what success looks like.

Beyond revenue, participating in social media has many beneficial business applications, such as facilitating customer service and boosting public relations.

Reach, traffic, leads, customers and conversion rate are metrics FGE suggests you consider to determine social media marketing success.

These include online purchases, filled-out contact forms, link clicks, newsletter signups, PDF downloads, social interactions, video views and more.

Choosing the perfect platform

The other main consideration is to carefully select the right platform for your requirements. Where do your customers hang out online? Are they tweeters or more inclined to connect on Facebook?

By now, most digital marketers agree that certain platforms tend to work better when reaching different audiences tuned in and looking for ideas that may be relevant.

For example:

Facebook – Generally Facebook is a great B2C marketing avenue.  Content can be a combination of images, copy and video.  The trick will be targeting the right market segment in this space.

Linkedin – A great platform to reach like minded professionals. Content should be a bit more polished and the platform tends to favour media releases and other corporate communications.

Twitter – short word count and highly conversational. Instagram – Highly visual: images and videos work best here. When determining your target market, you must figure out who they are, what platforms they prefer and how much time they spend there.

Reporting Finally after you have set your plan in place, chosen the right platform, and have begun to see some activity on line, it may be time to measure your movement on social media and plot it all down into a report. Afterall, your business owners would like to know how it is going and you will be interested to know if your strategies have been successful. Allow yourself some time to see results. Remember to be consistent in your style; post at regular intervals and keep your content fresh and relevant. Event planners and business owners alike should see some positive returns in the short to medium term.


Boost Your Event Social Media Results – Contact our event management and marketing experts to set up the social media tactical plan for your next event.