Writing an event brief or a request for proposal (RFP) is the first step in securing your vendors and also the first introduction they will have to your event. Outside of the basics (dates, venue and type of event) there are some key elements that you may not think to include or understand how important these can be in helping your potential vendors provide a more thorough and accurate proposal. Better proposals make sure you get everything you need and keep you inline and in budget.

Company profile

Including your company profile is incredibly important no matter how big or small your company is. Right off the top this gives your vendors a better idea of who they could be potentially working for and allows them to evaluate if they believe they will be a good fit with your company. This also gives each vendor an insight into your company and event, which can help them provide and anticipate specific solutions to fit your companies needs.

Detailed Event Information

Hiding or leaving out details only will cause surprises for you in the end. Try reading your event brief as a vendor and see if there are gaps or holes that don’t seem to showcase what you are trying to achieve with your event. If you can’t see what your goals are for the event there is no way that your vendors can properly bid on it. Be sure to include any information you have that could be beneficial to your vendors from prior years as well. You can never have enough information. When you think you have enough, go through it and add more. No one ever complained an event brief had too much detail in it.

Clear budget

Talk about your budget and be upfront about your expectations surrounding it. Some people think that by hiding or not disclosing this that they will save money. Sometimes (rare, very rare) that is true, but most of the time this can cause you only headaches in the end with a budget that can become wildly out of control. Without a budget specification you are not allowing your vendors to find unique solutions to get you the biggest bang for your money. Trust me when I say that shooting, editing and adding graphics to a 5 minute video costs way more than the number you currently have in your head, but maybe using existing footage and less graphics could save you money. See what they can do within your budget and then make the decision on if you want the top tier version.


It is so important to include a timeline for event brief questions, responses, due date and when you will be making a decision on who will be awarded the business. Giving your vendors enough time to read, ask questions and respond to you will help get you the best and most accurate information. While understandably this process sometimes has to be rushed, try to keep in mind that the receiver will need enough time to read, respond and gather information from all of their departments. You want this time and attention to your event brief, so if at all possible give as much as you can while still keeping things moving.

Writing event briefs can be tedious, but when done correctly and with as much information as you can possibly provide you will be pleasantly surprised with quality and accurate proposals you will receive in return!


Shannon Anderson has been an active member in the event industry for over 15 years trying out every job she could from banquet server to Director of Events. Taking on challenges from the screens at the Sundance Film Festival, the exotic locations of destination weddings and the slightly scary convention centers in Cartagena, Columbia, she has been there, done that and made small children and clients happy.

Currently she can be found traveling the globe, providing an educational experience about her job in creative production and spreading her wisdom to anyone within earshot. As a person who spends equal time on two different continents she chronicles her explorations on her daily lifestyle blog for sanity and admiration.
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