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A Meeting Planner’s Guide to Catered Events Chapter Seven Low-Cost Events.

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Presentation on theme: "A Meeting Planner’s Guide to Catered Events Chapter Seven Low-Cost Events."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Meeting Planner’s Guide to Catered Events Chapter Seven Low-Cost Events

2 Market Segments Shallow Market  Low-budget functions  Limited resources  Cost conscious  Government (per diem)  SMERF

3 SMERF  Social  Military  Educational  Religious  Fraternal

4 Market Segments Mid-level Market  Most Associations  Many Corporations  Mid-level events are usually planned well in advance.

5 Market Segments Deep Market  Fancy, upscale functions  Price takes a backseat to quality and service.  This segment will plan and purchase the extravagant events discussed in Chapter 8.

6 Budget Considerations  Budgets are tighter  It is estimated that the average meeting planner’s budget per person has dropped by about 25% in the past few years, and that the typical caterer’s total costs have escalated by about 25%.  But expectations are the same as they were in the latter part of the twentieth century.  All market segments still want the same level of freshness, quality, service, and creativity, consistent with what they are able and/or willing to pay.

7 Themes  Creative, low-budget themes to the rescue.  Themes can divert attendees’ attention from the modest menu offerings they can afford.

8  Ricky Eisen, a special events producer, said in an article in Event Solutions magazine:  “Where we used to use 12/16 jumbo shrimp, we now offer 26/30 'blackened shrimp' for New Orleans night or 'coconut breaded shrimp' for Tropical Nights.”  Smaller shrimp = lower food cost  (12/16 refers to the number of shrimp per pound. The smaller the number, the larger the shrimp).

9 Themes With Low Food Cost: Old Mexico  Taco bars, chili bar with toppings, interactive fajita bar, chips and guacamole.  Think of how many shrimp guests could eat in the time it takes them to construct and eat a taco.

10 Themes with low food cost: Ethnic cuisines  Ethnic cuisines have a low end and a high end.  When trying to save money, go for the low end.  Serve inexpensive cultural foods, such as beans, rice, pasta, tacos, and wraps.  Forget sweet and sour shrimp; serve lo mein and stir fry.  Serve spaghetti instead of veal scaloppini.  Pasta is an excellent, inexpensive alternative for a hot lunch.  Asian foods generally use less meat.  Asian foods generally use less meat.

11 Budget Cutting Options  Use American service.  Strategize with the caterer and/or chef.  Gang menus.  Use dualing menus.  Reduce the number of courses.  Secure a sponsor.  Reduce product quality.  Reduce portion sizes.  Use substitute products

12 More Budget Cutting Options  Use small-plate receptions.  Purchase prepackaged products on a consumption basis.  Avoid using mass-consumption bowls to display bulk products.  Use products in season.  Put your money into a spectacular dessert.  Use the same room setups for all functions.  Serve only finger foods.  Reduce floor space at receptions.  Spread out food stations.  Serve lighter foods.

13 More Budget Cutting Options  Avoid fancy napery and skirting.  Cheese trays are wasteful; don’t order too much.  Use only butler service for receptions.  Serve preset meals.  Serve only small portions of pricey items.  Dress up inexpensive foods.  Use trade-outs.  Do some of the work yourself.  Ask for discounts.  Carry in your own audiovisual equipment.  Schedule your event on Tuesday

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