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Event host information

Get great exposure and marketing support for your business.

On this page

  • Register your interest to become an event host in 2017
  • What is an event host?
  • Benefits of hosting an event
  • Eligibility criteria
  • Steps to becoming an event host
  • Host responsibilities

Register your interest to host an event in the 2017 Festival

Applications to stage an event/s as part of the 2016 Small Business Festival have closed. Organisations who have submitted applications will  be notified by 24 March 2016 if they are successful. Applications will be assessed against the Festival's eligibility criteria.

Important host information

Below are a list of frequently asked questions from organisations wishing to participate in the Festival.

What is an event host?

An event host manages and delivers an event in the Small Business Festival program.  In 2015, over 150 hosts participated in the Festival by delivering events, workshops and seminars in August.

What types of events are eligible?

Events designed to provide information or practical skills on how to start, operate or grow a small business are eligible to be included in the Small Business Festival Victoria program. To host an event you must have an Australian Business Number (ABN).

The events can be held in various formats such as seminars, networking events, workshops, presentations, forums or webinars. Hosts can apply to run one or multiple events in the Festival program.

Events designed to sell the host’s products or services to attendees are ineligible for inclusion in the festival program.

What are the benefits of hosting an event during the Small Business Festival?

There are a number of benefits in becoming a Festival event host including:

  • the opportunity to network  with small business owners, intenders and Festival partners
  • brand exposure in the Festival Program distributed to an extensive, state-wide Small Business Victoria network
  • marketing and promotional support from Small Business Victoria through the Festival website, social media channels and the Small Business Festival Victoria overarching advertising and PR campaign
  • complimentary tickets to attend the invitation-only Festival launch, Small Business BIG Marketing half-day event and other Festival activities 
  • access to a tailored Small Business Festival Victoria 2016 event evaluation report with valuable findings and statistics.

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What are my responsibilities as an event host?

All Small Business Festival Victoria event hosts are expected to:

  • create an interesting, informative and enjoyable event;
  • fund and manage all the administrative tasks involved with your event; and
  • co-brand all marketing and promotional materials associated with your event with official Festival branding, display supplied Festival posters and distribute mandatory materials to each attendee, distribute and collect completed event evaluation flyers from attendees and return to the Small Business Festival Victoria team within seven days of your event concluding, submit the final attendance numbers within seven days of your last event concluding.

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How do I become an event host?

Applying to become an event host is a three-step process.

Step 1

Register to become an event host on the Festival website and submit your proposed event/s through the Small Business Victoria Event Portal.

Registrations will open early February 2016. Event applications must be lodged through the Small Business Victoria Event Portal before midnight 2 March to be considered for the 2016 Festival Program.

Step 2

You will be notified if your application is successful by 24 March 2016. 

Step 3

Submit all confirmed event information by Tuesday 19 April 2016 to be published in the Festival Program. This includes the event description, venue, speakers and booking information for your approved sessions.

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What does it cost to host an event?

There is no fee to host an event as part of Small Business Festival Victoria 2016, however if events are cancelled and/or changed after 11 May 2016, the Festival reserves the right to charge an amendment fee.

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Does the event I organise have to be designed specifically for the Small Business Festival?

No, you can include any relevant business-related events in the Festival program. Events held in August as part of the Small Business Victoria Workshops & Seminars Program will be automatically included in the Festival.

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Can I deliver more than one event during the Festival?

Yes, you can deliver as many events as you like. However, it is advisable for new event hosts not to attempt more than one or two events initially.

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Do I take bookings for my events?

All hosts are responsible for taking and administering bookings for their own events. You must provide a website through which you will take bookings to the Festival by 19 April 2016.

All of your event booking details will appear in the Event Calendar on the Small Business Festival Victoria website.

Your event details can link directly to your website, to a third-party ticketing site or wherever you wish to direct the public so that bookings can be made easily.

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Can I charge a fee for the event?

Yes, however it is recommended that events are charged at a cost-recovery rate only in order to draw a wider audience.

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Can the Festival provide a speaker for my event?

No. The Festival cannot provide, endorse or recommend any particular speaker.

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Is there financial assistance for me to organise an event?

No, businesses hosting an event during the Small Business Festival Victoria are solely responsible for all costs involved in the delivery of the event.

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Can I organise my own sponsor for my event(s)?

Small Business Festival Victoria has its own sponsors. However, you may organise your own sponsors for individual events. Your event sponsors are responsible for sponsoring your event alone and not the Small Business Festival Victoria as a whole.

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How will my events be promoted?

The Small Business Festival Victoria team will promote the Festival through print and online media channels. However, the promotion and marketing of individual events is the sole responsibility of the host.

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What if I need to cancel my event or change event details?

If you need to cancel your event or change event details, please contact us as soon as possible on 03 9651 8020 or at so that event listings can be updated.

If you cancel an event, it will be removed from Events Calendar on the Festival website. However, event listings in the printed Festival program cannot be changed after the printing deadline. Please note, cancellations or changes to listings made after 11 May 2016 may incur a fee.

If event details need to be changed (such as venue or start time), remember to also notify any participants who have already booked to attend.

Who do I contact for more information about the Small Business Festival Victoria?

Phone: (03) 9651 8020