Month: October 2017

Planning A Christmas Party: Tips and Tricks to Make It the Perfect Party

Who doesn’t love a party? A time to unwind, have fun and indulge in good food and drinks. What’s not to love? And then there are Christmas parties, which are in a league of their own. Christmas parties are just so much more special than any other parties. There is excitement and anticipation about the upcoming holidays, coupled with the idea of presents leads to a very festive mood.

Organising a Christmas party can either be a fun project or a harrowing experience, depending on how you tackle the party planning process. Here are some useful tips and tricks to make planning a Christmas party—be it for work or for your family and friends—a enjoyable experience.

Party word written with many colours

Start Planning Early

Christmas has a way of creeping up on us. One-minute Christmas looks like it’s a long way off and before you know it, you’re scrambling to have all your presents neatly wrapped. Avoid the hassle by starting your planning early. You’ll need ample time to secure the venue for the Christmas party, make up a guest list and send invites. Remember, your guests need to be informed early so that they can plan their schedule around it.

Set The Budget

stack of coins

Your budget will determine a lot of the party details, from the venue to the food and presents. So, getting the budget sorted out first will go a long way in helping you organise the other stuff easily. If it’s a work party, check with whoever’s in charge of funds allocation and figure out what the budget is for the Christmas party. Always aim to spend less than the given budget. More often than not, unexpected expenses can come up and eat up the budget.

Pick The Venue

Pick the venue based on factors such as the budget, the number of guests, and the type of party you want to throw. If you’re keen on a party with lots of dancing, then you need a venue big enough to accommodate dancing. Alternatively, if you want a cosy atmosphere where guests can eat, talk and have a good time, then you can consider having the party at a smaller venue. From cruise ships to terrace gardens, there are venues to suit any party style or budget that you’ve got. All you need to do is to do your research and be sure to book a venue at the earliest to avoid missing out. Christmas is a super busy time when every corporate office will be looking for party venues. So, try to beat the rush by planning early.

The Food

table full of different food

When you send out the party invitations, request the guests to provide their dietary preferences. From food allergies to other food restrictions such as being vegans or vegetarians, need to be noted. Once you have all the information that you need, you can then plan the men, making sure that every one of the guests has some options when it comes to food.
Once you have the menu sorted, you will need to figure out the seating arrangement. Do you want a formal sit-down dinner affair? Or would a buffet be a better option?

Alcohol

No-alcohol events are a big thing these days. Depending on whether your party is a family affair or not, you can decide whether you want to serve alcohol. If you’re going to be serving alcohol, get that sorted out well in advance. It’s also a good idea to organise taxis for guests unable to drive at the end of the night.

The Party Theme

A great idea to break the ice and get people in the party mood is to have a fun theme for the party. You can make it a black-and-white or a red-and-gold themed Christmas party. Or something as simple as providing your gets with Santa hats can help bring the Christmas cheer and get the festivities started. No Christmas party is complete without lots of balloons, a tree and other colourful party decorations. Such efforts will make for great photographs, so don’t overlook the tiny details.
Let’s not forget the entertainment! Depending on your budget, your entertainment for the evening can be anything from a playlist of Christmas jingles to get everyone in the mood, or if you have a bigger budget, you can splurge for a live band. If it’s a family affair, organising some fun party games for the kids will be a sure hit.

Invitations

Don’t leave this till the last minute. Give your guests plenty of time to decide by sending out the invites at least two weeks before the party. To make things simple, send out invitations through email. Provide an RSVP deadline so that you’re not caught unawares with last-minute changes to the guest list.

Presents

Presents are a huge part of Christmas. Who doesn’t love giving and receiving presents? But one of the biggest issues with giving gifts is determining how much to spend on them. Come up with an acceptable amount and pass on this information to all your guests, so everyone’s aware of how much to spend on their gifts.

Post-Party Clean Up

animated broom and dust Organising a Christmas party extends to post-party activities such as cleaning up the venue. Check with the venue manager to see if they have a cleaning crew to take care of it or if you’ll have to hire one. Plan this to avoid having your guests clean up after themselves. No one wants to be cleaning the venue after a party, where’s the fun in that! So, organise a cleaning crew to take care of the post-party clean-up.

Party Favours

Give your guests a little something to end the party on a sweet note. Party favours are a great way to show the guests how happy you are that they could make it to the party. It’s the thought that counts, so don’t go overboard with it. Something simple such as a Polaroid photo of them enjoying the party, or even just some chocolates will make great return gifts.
Christmas is a time for jolly good fun. Don’t let the stress of organising a party take away your Christmas cheer. Follow these tips instead to help you plan your Christmas party like a pro.

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Packing Boxes – How to Choose them

Even the best product needs an appealing packaging to make it stick with the customer. For the same reason, a wrong choice of packaging can be very detrimental to the success of the product. Like the adage, the first impression always is the best impression and marketers are focusing on packaging more than ever in a world where competition allows only the best to survive.

Packing Box
A wide range of packing boxes are available and depending on what gets into it manufacturers choose the material. But even before the choice of packaging material, there are several factors that should be considered. Let us, therefore, explore some of these factors:-

Your packaging should travel well

A killer design is undoubtedly essential, but it also should be able to move from point A to B without suffering any significant damage and should be comfortable to handle. Packaging fragile or bulky material would mean that your focus should be on strength. Similarly when an outward display is important such as in the case of the package sitting on the retailer’s shelf like a proud peacock, then the external display comes into focus. However, this is an area that should not cause much worry since technology behind colours and printing technology itself has come a long way from it was a few decades ago. Today, you can mix and match a sea of colours before a chosen design gets printed. You can even pre-coat the surface on which your design is to be printed to add strength as well as visual appeal.

You should also consider how well the packages stack. This will ensure that people who handle the packages from the point of origin to its destination handle them well and with ease. For a lightweight material such as electronic products or components, and blister packing sheets are widely chosen to provide a cushioning effect and prevent damage to the delicate content.

Corrugated boards are now available in bio-degradable paper as well as acrylic (plastic family) and can be converted into desired size and shapes according to your needs. These sheets come in varying thickness with or without the flute. A 3 ply sheet means three independent sheets are sandwiched together to make a single sheet. These sheets are then fabricated to the desired size and shape.

Corrugated birds are sturdy enough for heavy-duty and the acrylic corrugated sheets are capable of being tossed around without causing serious damage to the contents.

Choose to package with focus on the content

While choosing to package, the content comes first. In other words, you should be picking packaging that suits the content and not the other way around.
Paperboard performs well for lightweight content and comes with exceptional printing results too. This type of packing is best suited for a diary, food, cosmetics, hardware, pharmaceutical products and host of other retail products.

Corrugated sheets

As explained earlier, these are a flexible type of boards ideal for heavy or fragile items, e-commerce packaging and shipping cartons.

Cling film/shrink film

Cling wrap or Cling film is a relatively new entrant in the packaging space. Think of a dozen pet bottles with content being wrapped around similar to a box. A major advantage with this type of packing is that they are stackable and there is no worry of getting the empty boxes back. Depending on the volumes you use, this can be a cost-effective packing too. Aerated drinks and liquor industries use this widely.

Size matters

Different size boxes

When you have products coming in say, 4 different sizes, you can design two packages to accommodate all the 4 products than producing 4 different packages. However, you will need to be savvy with design and economical with dimensions to achieve this. But, that would be a measure that brings consistency, savings in money and time across your product line.

Understand market preferences

A 2013 study of packaging preferences for Indian consumers showed that smaller packaging of cosmetics was preferred over the bigger pack sizes. The 10 ml shampoo packaging constituted a revelation for the entire cosmetic industry after one brand stole the limelight with its 10 ml offerings. Today a host of products in the cosmetics and other consumer brands have adopted the 10 ml sachets and some 98% of all shampoo sold in India today is accounted for by the 10 ml sachets.

Understanding your audience

Any amount of effort that you put into packaging your product/s can be set to nought if it does not appeal to your audience. For instance, most customers would want to see a liquid product in a transparent bottle or container. Now, if the same product gets into an opaque container, chances are that your sales will dip and so will your profits. This task gets a lot easier when you, as the manufacturer get into the shoes of the consumer and consider the preferences.
For some products, the customers would focus on the product itself than the packaging and therefore the product gains precedence over packaging. Ceramic tiles, paint, and electrical fittings are among the examples.

Ergonomics

Some people may think that ergonomics does not apply to packing. But if your packaging presents discomfort for the end user in terms of size and/or shape, then you are overlooking ergonomics. Imagine a toy being shipped through an e-commerce portal like Amazon. Your customer would expect to see the bare material within seconds after he has received the consignment. Now, you thought the toy is very precious and pack it in 6 layers requiring the customer to access a series of tools before he can reach what he has paid for! That is essentially discomforting and maybe even a negative approach to packing. In other words, all your efforts in material selection and design for your packing should put the end user first and make the packaging comfortable for him/her to handle.

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