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Event Management 6 Common Mistakes
Workshops can be run at plush hotels, coffee bars, online, through conference calls – in fact when you let your imagination run wild, events can be as big or small as you want them to be.
But there is nothing worse than spending your precious time designing an event, booking a venue and marketing it only to have more trainers than delegates! And I am sure this is why so many people are put off by running events.
It’s the thought “but what happens if no one comes?”
There are several common mistakes that many people make running live events. Read on to find out how you can avoid them and make sure your events are filled successfully.
Mistake No 1:
Offer events that people need – not what they want. It is too easy to spot a gap in the market and decide to share your expertise on a subject that you just know is needed. But if there is no desire for what you are offering, it makes selling your event incredibly hard work. After all, it is not just money someone is investing in a live event – it is their time as well.
Find out what your market place really wants before deciding on your agenda. If you don’t believe me, try offering a time management workshop and just see how many people pay you money to attend.
Mistake No 2:
Think advertising not marketing. “How do I advertise my events?” is often one of the first questions people ask. Advertising costs can eat in to your profit incredibly quickly and to be frank, will not work if you are offering an event “cold”. Unless you have a strong brand presence in your market, you need to build people’s trust in you. You need to design a marketing plan that builds a conversation with potential delegates.
Mistake No 3:
Start marketing with no database. The larger the database of interested customers you have, the more likely you are to fill your event. If you have a database of 100 people and you are trying to market an event that you need 7 to break even and 20 to make your target profit, the maths just don’t add up. Your conversion rate needs to be 20% which will only work if you have a very desirable topic and those people all happen to be free on the same day.
Mistake No 4:
Offer the whole cake rather than a taster. The reason that stall holders at Farmers’ Markets offer a morsel to taste is that they want to tempt you to buy the whole cake. If you want to offer taster sessions to test the market place, consider breaking down your offerings to morsels. It makes it much easier to charge the true value of the event once you start marketing it commercially.
Mistake No 5:
Discount heavily as desperation sets in. Your workshop is in 5 days and you need another 4 or 5 people to really make it work. You start discounting and offering BOGOFFs (buy one, get one free!). But how do you think this makes the people, who have already committed to you, feel? It’s like going on holiday, only to find that the person in the room next door got the exact same holiday for half the price because they booked on teletext the week before.
Offer early bird discounts and reward the people who book in advance. If you really need to increase the numbers at short notice, it is far better PR by offering a few free places to your favourite customers as a thank you for their loyalty to you.
Mistake No 6:
Have no follow on events. One event does not make a business. Always have something else to offer to people who genuinely can’t attend the day of the workshop, but are interested in what you are offering. (at the very least offer an email newsletter to keep in touch with them!)
You may find that it takes 4 or 5 months to build up awareness for your events. It seems a long time, but believe me it will then make filling workshop 3 and 4 far easier (and a lot more fun for you!)
What has been my biggest mistake?
Not checking that the venue I was presenting at had the right audio visual cable and connector for my laptop for a conference room presentation! I arrived at the venue to find the projector and screen, but no cable to connect them to my laptop. It was one of those heart-stopping moments when I panicked knowing that I had 100 delegates waiting to get the day started. Whilst oblivious to the situation, they continued to happily tuck into their coffee and biscuits and I rummaged through all the cables in the boot of my car to find the correct cable and connector. Luckily I had one and everything turned out well, but you have to be prepared as things don’t always go to plan – no matter how many times you check!
Event Wishes contact details: For a no obligation consultation of how Event Wishes can help you and your organisation to plan your event, avoiding the stress, mistakes and hassle, please give us a call on 07974 350 950 or send and email to email@example.com.
We look forward to hearing from you.
Date written: Tue, 19 Jan 2010 15:57:57 +0100
Wedding Planner and Event Planner
Geography : Cambridge London UK
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