Some of you already know about vendors for events or have been vendors at events. But did you know there are several different ways to monetize them?

Room Layout: There are several ways and places to put your vendor tables which can ultimately be priced differently. The cost usually depends on the number of attendees you are promising will be at the event. Do not over promise. It is better to under promise and over deliver. Make sure the amount you choose is commensurate of the value of the event.

  1. Outside meeting room: Some people like being outside the room, some like to be inside. When selling the outside tables, let your potential vendors know that the guests will be lingering in the morning outside waiting for the event doors to open. This is a great time for them to check out the vendor tables. People also hang out during lunch and after the meetings.
    1. Extra: Vendors thanked in meeting program.
    2. Extra: Vendors allowed to place items into the Swag Bag (see next blog)
  2. Inside meeting room: These are deemed more desirable and usually cost more. You can let you vendors know that the guests will be viewing all the tables inside the meeting all through the event. The downside: no one is let into the room until the event starts; only time the tables are viewed is when everyone is coming in, lunch break and after the event. These tables should go for more money.
    1. Extra: Vendors thanked in meeting program
    2. Extra: Inside Vendors get 30 – 60 seconds to introduce themselves. Time permitting.
  • You can offer them an add in the program (business card size, quarter-page, half-page) It is up to you.
  1. Place items in Swag Bag (see next blog)

Make sure the venue has tables and linens for each vendor, so you do not have to purchase anything additionally. If they don’t have linens, let your vendors know they must provide their own. I like it when all the vendor tables have the same color linens, it looks coordinated. Walk the space and make sure there is enough room for each vendor; a bit of space on either side is great for signage and to move in and out of the back of the table. Ask the vendors if they need electricity? If so, place them where there is an outlet. If the venue must run electricity to a table; they will charge you for it. Have the vendor pay if that is the issue. The idea is for you to make money.

Bonus Budget Item: 10 Vendor tables (all outside) $300 each for 50 guest event. 5 Inside Tables $400 each for same size event. See updated budget below.

Remember these are just estimated costs. As your numbers climb, your costs climb. This is just an example:

Sample Budgeting Form
Item Cost
Location $500 Rental for room/tables/chairs/linens
Food & Beverage $1,000 Cost of all Drinks/Food during event
Audio Visual $750 Microphone/Screen/Audio
Parking $12 Paid by Attendees ($17 reg price)
Printing $500 50 packets
Name Badges $125 50 Lanyards/Nametags
Staffing 0 Volunteers
Marketing $150
Total Estimate $3,037
50 Attendees $60.74 pp $3037 divided by 50
100 Attendees $46.62 Cost for Printing/Nametags/Food & Beverage doubled $4662
Profit Breakdown 50 Attendees
Description Amount Total Profit
50 Attendees  $                   97.00  $                                                                      4,850.00
10 Vendors  $                300.00  $                                                                      3,000.00
5 Vendors  $                400.00  $                                                                      2,000.00
Running Total    $                                                                      9,850.00
Estimated Cost  $                                                                    (3,037.00)
Running Profit  $                                                                    16,663.00
Profit Breakdown 100 Attendees
Description Amount Total Profit
50 Attendees  $                   97.00  $                                                                      9,700.00
10 Vendors  $                500.00  $                                                                      5,000.00
5 Vendors  $                800.00  $                                                                      4,500.00
Running Total    $                                                                    19,200.00
Estimated Cost  $                                                                    (4,662.00)
Running Profit  $                                                                    14,538.00