Creating a meaningful event – set your purpose and target audience

We want you to get the most out of your Victorian Law Week event. In this section you will find important information about setting your event’s purpose and target audience.

When planning your Victorian Law Week event, it is essential to consider the purpose of the event and the audience you are trying to reach. If you can clearly define these two elements, then you’re well on your way to creating a meaningful event that will benefit your community. 

Defining your purpose 

Why are you running your event?

It sounds like a simple question, but it can take some serious thought to determine a really solid purpose for your event. The effort you put in during the planning stage will pay off at the other end when you hold a successful event.

It is important to be specific, as the purpose of your event should be factored into all elements of your event planning and delivery.

It might be helpful to consider: 

  • What do you hope attendees will get out of your event? 
  • Is your event being held to meet a specific legal need that has been identified? 
  • Is your event being held to educate people about a new development? 

Examples

The purpose of the event is to raise awareness amongst tertiary students about how to challenge unjust public transport fines. 
 
The purpose of the event is to educate aged care providers about how to identify when a resident is a victim of elder abuse. 
 
The purpose of the event is to encourage retirees who don’t have a will to undertake future planning. 


Setting your target audience 

Identifying your target audience

Your event will be more effective if it is targeted to a specific group, as you will be delivering the right information to the right people in the right way.

Ideally, Victorian Law Week events should aim to provide legal information directly to the groups that need it most.  

Who do you want to talk to? Who needs to know the information you are sharing? Who will be interested in attending your event? Be specific.

It might be helpful to consider:

  • Is your event designed for people in a particular geographic location? Age bracket? Occupation? Education level?
  • Is your event designed for people at a particular life stage (for example, university students, young parents, empty nesters, retirees)?
  • Is your event designed for people who are joined-up with other services? If so, would it be more effective to target your event at the service providers rather than the individuals?

Common traps

Your first thought might be that your target audience is everyone who has a particular legal issue. This may not be specific enough, as different groups will have different needs. For example, you might want to run an event about future planning for anyone without a will. But the information needs, mode of delivery, and even the most convenient location and time for your event will differ greatly between groups such as young parents and retirees.

Your target audience should not be the general public. Why? In order to communicate effectively with your audience, you need to speak to them in a manner that is appropriate, relevant and useful – and you cannot speak to everyone effectively in the same manner. If you try to speak to everyone, you’ll end up speaking to almost no-one.

Considerations

When planning your event, you should think about your hook – why will your target audience want to attend your event? Why would they take time out of their day to attend your event over anything else they might want to do? Keep in mind that not everyone is able to recognise that there is a legal dimension to their problems and/or seek appropriate help.

Your target audience should dictate:

  • The language you use and how you focus your messaging
  • The format of your event
  • Event location, date, time and duration
  • How you market your event

When identifying your target audience, it is also important to consider if you have a way to reach that audience to let them know about your event.

Examples

The target audience is tertiary students who live or study in the Box Hill area.

The target audience is managers and staff of private aged care homes in the Goulburn Valley region.

The target audience is people over 70 who live in Glenroy.


Checklist – Key considerations

Audience   Who is your target audience?  This will influence your topic and the ‘voice’ you use to address that audience.  
PurposeWhy are you running the event? What do you want attendees to get out of it?
Topic  Does your event meet a specific legal need of your target audience?  How has that need been identified?  
Content   How will your event educate people about an existing or emerging legal issue?   
Presenter   Does your presenter have the skills to engage your target audience?  
Format   Does the event format you are considering suit your target audience’s lifestyle and the way they prefer to receive information?  
Reach Do you have a way to let your target audience know about the event? Will they be interested in attending?
Evaluation   How will you assess if your session achieved some or all of its purpose?  How will you collect feedback from participants to find out what they thought and to inform your planning for next time?  

Got any questions?

Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us for guidance on planning your event.

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