How to Effectively Manage the Crowd
by Mashum Mollah Management 23 October 2019
Crowd management at events, and knowing how to effectively manage the crowd, largely depends on two things: the crowd and the event. You have certain crowds that are nice and mellow, and you have others that party hard and often damage things. There are events that allow a crowd to go nuts, and there are those where you’re pretty limited.
Whichever the type of crowd, whichever the type of event, there are ways to manage the crowd. Sure, preparing for the unknown is tricky. However, if you keep in mind a few key things when it comes to crowd management, you can significantly reduce the chances of your event ending like a bad experience.
So, how do you manage a crowd effectively? What should you do before, during, and after the event to make sure everything goes, and everything went, as good as it should’ve? You can use Rentopian to keep track of all your equipment ins and outs. Let’s find out.
You should get to know the audience
The first thing you’ll want to know in order to manage the crowd is the crowd itself. For example, a football match or a popular concert will probably get a bit more action than an academic conference. Therefore, you might want to go for full-on barricades, and not rope dividers.
In order to get to know them, look at who your past attendees were at a similar (or identical) event. This gives you a good understanding of what to expect from your crowd. If you don’t have access to data about previous attendees, look at the competition – who’s attending events that are similar to yours?
Another good tip is to see what your event does for whoever attends it. You should see why someone is coming. You may think this is pretty straightforward. For example, if you have cooking classes, chances are people who come want to learn how to cook. Well, yes, and no. If you want to cater to their needs much better, you’ll want to find out why they want to come to your class.
Make sure your planning is as good as it can be
When you’ve got a good idea of where you’re going to be organizing the event, and who’s going to be attending, you’ll want to plan things out to perfection. Of course, you should leave a bit of leeway because you can’t possibly predict everything.
Do keep in mind that planning should be done for the inside, as well as the outside of the venue. You won’t only have guests inside, but you’ll have them queuing outside, too, waiting to get in. Do you have alternative routes for them to get to where they need to? Make sure you do.
While you’re planning, you should make sure to contact everyone who’s going to be affected by your event. Make sure to first contact the venue management and event contractors, and layout the floor plan for the entire event so everyone knows what to expect. Then, contact the local authorities and emergency services – they should be well aware that a large crowd is going to assemble at the venue. Last but not least, contact any neighboring businesses. Let everyone know what’s going to be happening, and what kind of crowd they should be expecting. Many of them will have some kind of experience with crowd management, so you might as well pick up a few tips, too.
Use plenty of signage
When the event is about to start, avoiding the need to answer plenty of questions can relieve a lot of stress. Therefore, use proper signage in order for everyone to know where they should (and shouldn’t) go. Give them alternative routes as well to dilute the crowd as well as possible. Mark any important zones such as registration queues, smoking areas, restrooms, and potential hazards. Ropes, barricades, cones, and stanchions might help you with this, and your attendees will have a better idea of where to go.
Last but not least, review everything!
You planned everything, the entire event went in almost perfect order, and now you’re done. You pack up your th.. no. You don’t pack up your things and leave, but instead, you review everything that happened. Chances are, besides all the things you did right, you’ll find a few that could’ve been done better.
Therefore, you’ll want to gather everyone who’s a key member of your organization and talk through everything that happened. See where you could improve, and use the event as a learning experience for the future. Chances are you’re not the only person who saw something that could be done better, so make sure you get feedback from everyone. Your next event should be perfect.