Master your craft: Drafting an event proposal

By Andile Nkosi 

As an unsigned artist/entertainer your will come across many situations which will require you to organize an event for one reason or another. Since you do not have the financial luxury of hiring an event organizer and are without the back-up of a huge marketing team that takes care of your Mixtape/CD launch, Birthday party, Website launch, Fundraiser and Promotion gig you will probably attempt to go at it on your own.

For a successful event you will need a: Venue; Sound system and stage; Entertainment Line Up; Marketing plan; Security; Refreshments for your guests; Programme for the day and the Event budget. All these items makeup your event proposal.
The event proposal is a 1-3 page document that contains the basics of your planned event and helps you track where you are and also makes it easy for other people to quickly understand your plans as well. The people include speakers on your events, the press, guest performers and potential investors/sponsors.
Your event proposal should look somewhat like this:

Introduction – Brief history of the event of your organization. What are you doing and why? The aim is crucial e.g. To promote raw talent / To raise funds towards a particular cause / to sell CDS etc.
Event details – Date, venue, duration, entrance fee, venue type (outdoor/ club/ etc) and expected number of people etc.
Programme – Sequence of events showing who will talk at what time and who will perform at which slot
Entertainment Line Up – Here you list any DJs, MCs, comedians, speakers, and performing artists that will perform. These are the people you would normally put on your event poster
Marketing plan – What medium will you use to advertise? When will you advertise? How frequent? And how much will it cost?  

-10xA1 posters on all main streets in XXX Township                  
-3 weeks before the event

-1000x flyers at XXX high school; YYY collage and ZZZ call centre.
-3 days before the event.

-Live reads on AAA Community Radio.
-4 on the day of the event.

Budget – How much will it cost? Hiring a hall, paying your MC, feeding your VIP guests, transportation while organizing the event and on the day of the event. The expected income (if any) from that event should be outlined here.
What we want from you – This section is different for each person you send your proposal to. For example to a popular artist from your neighborhood you might request that they perform for a discounted amount as you are still starting up while for an upcoming artist you might request that they perform for free. On the other hand, you might ask as sponsor to pay for the sound & stage in return of marketing mileage in the event posters & branding on the day of the event.
What we offer in return – Here you need to clearly give three strong reasons why the person reading your proposal should give you what you want. For an investor, this can be a profit split and to an upcoming artist it can be that the opportunity to perform in-front of a huge crowd and the possibility of press coverage as you would have invited journalists as well.
Contacts – Give you full names, aka/alias, contact number, email address (most important), website and any social media that you might be part off. Your Facebook page/blog might convince a potential stakeholder to involve themselves with your event based on how attractive/active your page is.  

Adding the proposed event poster or photos of previous events you have hosted can also play to your advantage. As you can see, an event proposal goes a long way in helping you assess whether you are ready/capable or not to host an event as well as help you approach stakeholders more professionally. So the next time you think of throwing an event, start with drafting an event proposal.



  1. Thank you for this. This is has helped me a lot

  2. Panorama Promotions & EventsOctober 26, 2013 at 6:56 AM

    Powerful stuff my Boet!!!

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