Choosing which production company or DMC (Destination Management Company) to hire is not simply a matter of reviewing resumes and selecting from the stack. Rather, it’s a foundational first step in the final event itself, making it critical to get it right.
Once you’ve identified a shortlist of potential DMCs, use this list of questions and topics to dig into their expertise, their abilities, and their vision for your partnership. And by getting answers, you’ll step closer to an assured, confident decision.
Ten Questions for Your Florida DMC
Seeking to hire an event production company or an event management company means investigating some of the major domains of any event. This includes concerns you might have about transportation or logistics. Then, there are questions you surely have about possible excursions, entertainment, and catering. The decor becomes serious and so does location. Details must be drilled down.
But, none of this should mean you must understand everything about event planning in order to hand off your ideas to experienced hands. Rather, the following questions and discussions will help you to narrow down your search to place your project squarely and safely with the best experts.
Read some of the ways we recommend getting to know a potential DMC, and see how you can cut through the complexity of throwing a corporate event with these focuses.
What’s your experience (with Florida)?
While most will want to know (and have the chance to tell) their experience with destination management, we want to look beyond how many years the company has been in business. Look to hire a company that shows it has not only knowledge of the destination, but also an incredibly close connection with it in order to hold the kind of memorable space you need to motivate business and performance.
Hire a DMC with years of experience in the industry as well as a keen concept of what the region has to offer. By knowing local food, artisans, small businesses, and more more niche, potential offerings, your DMC will give you a leg up on other events.
Are you local or national?
Some DMCs operate locally, some nationally, others globally. Like many other services, going with a big box store invites a certain kind of experience at the cost of others. For instance, these DMCs might have conditions for their events imposed by their own corporate structure that make certain kinds of accommodations impossible.
Smaller, more independent offices like Firebrand—local to Florida—have connections to all the same resources in the area without the cookie-cutter experience. Instead, they give personalized attention to their clients looking to enjoy their time in Florida at a detailed, thoughtful level.
How do you show creativity?
In the course of business and appointments and arrangements—creativity gets forgotten. Anyone who has hired an event production or destination management company and been disappointment by the outcome knows that.
Of course, it’s not the first thing people think about when talking to a potential DMC, but it should. If you don’t want an event that could have been put on or managed by anyone, anywhere then ask about what makes the firm creative. Dig into their ideas.
What do your clients say about you?
Looking at testimonials is a good way to shop on Amazon, and it’s a good way to review if your potential DMC can satisfy you as a client. Take a look at what your DMC has on their website, but be sure to look into testimonials on Google, Yelp, and beyond to see what real people have to say about their time.
Do you outsource?
Unfortunately, many DMC partners find themselves outsourcing in order to push out productions and keep clients moving.
Smaller firms with fewer clients are some of the few left who are able to handle client needs and fulfill their plans without resorting to outsourced talents. Ask your DMC if they outsource, what they outsource, and how that might impact the outcome.
What samples and photos can you share?
Review the portfolio of your DMC with an eye toward what makes them different. Anyone can produce an event that looks good on paper (or online), but the photo will also tell you where their creativity fell short. Taking a detailed look, you can see if previous events look like more of the same—or something fresh.
Are you full-service or a middleman?
Some DMC and event production companies aren’t what they seem. When you work with one of them—even if they seem to have great, trained, knowledgeable staff—you may actually be getting services from a patchwork of vendors that ultimately inflate the cost of the event.
Part of the reason that this is an important question is because inflated costs (great event or not) can set up disappointed expectations from the beginning. Find out if your DMC can provide the full suite of services needed to make your event a success within budget and with a smoothness that middlemen cannot imagine.
What kinds of relationships do you bring?
DMCs, especially if they are local, will bring certain relationships with vendors that can be useful in your event and production. A local DMC, for example, is likely to form many fine, close relationships with those who can cultivate the highest experiences for their clients with the fewest costs. Big-chain DMC partners may not.
About Firebrand Event Productions
Firebrand, a corporate event design and logistics firm, is driven to captivate audiences through real-time storytelling. With professionals in architecture, fabrications, design, and logistics, Firebrand uses the latest technologies in audio, visual, paint, and print to construct creative, seamless moments.
The team's portfolio includes a presidential inauguration, four Olympic Games, and thousands of corporate events. To launch an innovative event, contact Firebrand.