By Lisa Major
Experiential marketing is no longer just a buzzword. It’s here to stay. And with the rise in experiential marketing events and brand activations comes a greater need for staff; brand ambassadors, product specialists, promotional models, you name it. Event staffing agencies are the way to go regarding event staff. But while brands and marketers may think that all event staffing agencies are the same, they aren’t. When looking for and comparing companies, they need to research to find out if an agency has the capabilities, experience, and reach to staff an event successfully.
Staffing is a problematic piece of the experiential planning puzzle, but it doesn’t have to be. Hiring an agency that can meet all of your needs will alleviate a lot of your stress. Here are six of the most common misconceptions about event staffing.
Fact: Even if a brand ambassador has worked 200 events for an agency, it doesn’t necessarily qualify them for every role or brand activation. For example, if someone hates gaming, they shouldn’t be hired for an eSports event.
Takeaway: A good agency understands that even vets get vetted.
Fact: When it comes to specialty events, like large-scale or multi-market campaigns or specific staff attributes or skills, not all event staffing agencies have the capacity or knowledge to pull those off.
Takeaway: Experience counts, do your research and choose your partner wisely.
Fact: You are only 100% booked once you are 120% booked. Life happens. Brand ambassadors back out for all kinds of legitimate and not-so-legitimate reasons. Event staffing agencies that offer complimentary paid backups to ensure your event is fully staffed show that they genuinely care about the partnership and your campaign.
Takeaway: Back that thing up.
Fact: You will be talking to your staffing company A LOT. You’ll want an agency that will listen to your needs, be there for you, communicate with you, respond to your needs and wants, and, most importantly, be proactive rather than reactive. Issues will arise, and they need to know how to handle those problems and make things right.
Takeaway: Your staffing partner is your friend. Make sure they treat you like one.
Fact: Veteran event staffing agencies have seen it all! No budget, no lead time, major oversights, and royal screw-ups. A good staffing partner will bend over backward to ensure your event is ready to rock.
Takeaway: Bring on the challenge.
With all the fly-by-night event staffing agencies that pop up year after year, make sure you do your research. Look for those who have been around for a while and have the capabilities and experience to meet your exact needs.