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The Difference Between Event Producer vs Event Planner

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When hosting an event, you will need different kinds of professionals to make it a success. Two of the most common groups you will work with are event producers and event planners. However, these two roles can be confusing if you are new to the event industry. In this guide, we will be looking at the differences between an event producer vs event planner.

Event Producer vs Event Planner: General Overview

Undoubtedly, you want your event to be a success. However, you must work with the right people to achieve this. It is very likely throughout your event, you will be working with an event planner and an event producer or event production company. However, these two terms are often used interchangeably, so much so that it can be difficult to tell them apart.

We will help you differentiate between event planners and event producers so that you know exactly who you should be hiring for which roles. Let’s start with a general overview of each.

Who is an Event Planner?

An event planner is the person responsible for organizing, coordinating, and executing all aspects of an event. They take care of everything from conceptualizing the event to overseeing the setup and breakdown of the event. Their responsibilities include venue selection, vendor management, budgeting, and ensuring that all the details are taken care of. Event planners are the ones who handle the day-to-day tasks and ensure that everything runs smoothly on the day of the event. They work closely with the client to understand their needs and requirements and ensure that the event is a success.

Who is an Event Producer?

An event producer is a person responsible for attaching meat to the bones presented to them by the event planner. Basically, they are responsible for bringing the event to life. While the event planner takes care of strategy and most of the overall details, the event producer is responsible for some of the specific areas related to the technology and production needs such as audio/visual, stage designs, creative concepts, to name a few, all focused on delivering a memorable event experience.

So, the event planner designs the client’s vision, and the producer brings that vision to life. In this regard, the roles of an event producer include overseeing the audio/visual production, bringing in the crew needed to set-up the stage, collaborating with the speakers, and managing the onsite staff.

Comparing Event Producers and Event Planners

While event planners and producers are often thought of as the same people, their roles differ significantly. Yes, one person can be both an event producer and an event planner. However, it is still important that we draw a distinction between the two while also taking note of their similarities.

To explain this further, let’s examine the similarities and differences between an event planner and an event producer.


The main reason why event planners and event producers need clarification is that the same person usually performs both roles in a small event. Understandably, the two have some similarities. For instance:

  • They are both responsible for bringing the client’s vision to life. The planner builds the event’s foundation while the producer takes care of the entire structure attendees will see, admire, and experience.
  • They are both managers. The producer manages the overall event creation process while the planner manages smaller teams like the designers, florists, and caters.
  • They both create the event schedule. The event planner and event producer are responsible for creating the overall event schedule. This allows them to get different teams to work towards holistically achieving the event vision.


While they are similar in some aspects, event planners and event producers can be distinctively different. They mostly differ in terms of the following:

  • Roles: The event planner is responsible for designing a strategy and taking care of the small details, while the event producer is responsible for using their production expertise to deliver a good experience for both the attendees and the client.
  • Skills: While they share some of the same skills, event producers are more proficient in utilizing the latest event technology, creative design concepts, and audio/visual strategies. On the other hand, event planners have a better understanding of overseeing all of the details of the event, since they mostly interact with the client and the pre-production crews.
  • Job requirements: To be an event planner, you will most likely require a bachelor’s degree in hospitality, event management, or any other related field. You may also earn industry recognized credentials like Certified Meeting Planner (CMP) or Certified Meeting Manager (CMM). On the other hand, to be an event producer, you may need a bachelor’s degree in video production, technical director, creative designs, or a related field.

Major Distinguishing Factor

The biggest distinguishing factor between event planners and event producers is that planners are responsible for most of the pre-production activities, while producers are responsible for most of the things that happen during the event.

For instance, an event planner will choose the venue, while the producer will ensure that the venue is equipped with all the necessary AV equipment.

When to Hire an Event Planner

Hire an event planner if you need someone to help with the following:

  • Choosing a great venue
  • Coming up with theme ideas
  • Creating a budget
  • Choosing a catering service
  • Managing logistics
  • Creating a seating plan

When to Hire an Event Producer

You should hire an event producer in addition to an event planner if you need help with the following:

  • Setting up the stage and ensuring that you have all the AV equipment you need
  • Hiring the production crew
  • Inspecting the venue and equipment before the event starts
  • Finding the right speakers for the event
  • Getting a great entertainment team

Which Professional is Better For Your Event?

In most cases, you will need an event planner if you are hosting a small or medium event like a wedding ceremony, anniversary, birthday, or graduation ceremony, a good planner should be able to do everything a producer would do.

However, for big corporate events, you might need the help of both an event planner and an event producer. Producers come in handy here because of the complexity of the events and the equipment needed. In case you need both, we recommend using a professional event company like Vario.

Final Verdict

In most cases, especially if you are hosting a small event, you will only need an event planner to take care of everything. However, if it is a big event, you will likely need both the producer and planner.

We will help you get the benefits of an event producer and production manager under one roof. This way, you can save a lot of money and work with a team that understands exactly how to deliver a memorable event experience for you and your attendees. If this is what you are looking for, don’t hesitate to contact us for more details or check out our event solutions.

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