This article is the first installment in the How to Start A Successful Event series.
Believe it or not, it is actually pretty easy and lucrative to create your own successful event series. There are just a few things that you must implement very well. In this article we’ll make you an event organizing machine.
Events can be very different. They can be large conferences, small educational workshops, sporty events, or fun, social get-togethers. Believe it or not, these seemingly very different types of events have a tremendous amount in common.
Consistency Is Key
Whatever your event may be, over time you will be able to figure out how to improve your events and make them fantastic for your attendees. That means that whether the first event in your event series is a successful one or not, as you move forward, your events will become better and better as you gain experience running them. Running events on a consistent basis will help you continuously improve the events and grow your attendance.
For most people, the first event they ever put on is usually not very successful. I know my first event was a disaster. I was the only person who showed up to the first event I ever scheduled. People shouldn’t be discouraged if the first event isn’t successful. Instead, they should run the event regularly until they figure out how to get good attendance and have the quality of the event be very high so that next time the event occurs, many people come back, and even bring their friends.
Your venue may require you to have event insurance, but if your event has elements for which you can potentially be sued for because people suffer bodily or other kind of harm, it is a good idea to consider buying insurance even if they don't. At the very least run the event as a part of an established business which would give you liability protection.
There are three ways to price the events: free, “pay your own rate”, and actually setting a price to attend. Let’s cover all three.
As you are building an audience, you don’t want to limit attendance by charging. If you can afford it, make your first events free if that is possible for the kind of event you are running. If free is not possible, make it very affordable.
As you build your attendance and as you figure out how to ensure that every event is well attended, you want to begin charging people to attend. But charging people discourages about 80% or more of the people from attending. There is a solution for this. It is “pay your own rate” pricing. People decide if they want to pay you, and how much. By making the event basically free, you retain your large attendance, and about 10-20% of the people will choose to pay you. That actually works out to approximately the same amount of money you might collect if you charge for the event upfront, but only get about 15% of your potential audience to attend.
Of course, the best situation is when you are able to get strong attendance even when you charge people to attend. Pricing can vary from $1 to $10,000 for different kinds of events. Try to calibrate and experiment with different pricing to see what works for you. Pricing almost any product requires some experimentation and educated guessing... READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON EVENT PRICING
Additional Ways To Monetize Events
There are other ways to make money from your events in addition to charging for the events upfront. As your events grow, you can get sponsors. You can also sell various products or services at the events. And, of course, if your event becomes very popular, you can have your own kind of VIP tickets that are more expensive, but come with perks.
You can even leverage your own event series to position yourself as an expert in your business niche. If you are successful at positioning yourself as an expert in your business niche, you may make money from your event by getting hired for consulting or full time work for a high rate. And, of course, you can maximize profits by inviting current attendees to attend your future events, especially if those events are paid. It can often be much easier to re-engage an existing customer than finding a new one... READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON MONETIZING YOUR EVENT
How To Promote An Event
You can promote your events through getting publicity, leveraging large local event websites for your local area, partnering with other large events and their organizers, and promoting your events on your website for which you do SEO and social media marketing.
You must also do your best to retain your attendees to make sure that they attend future events as well. One of the top ways to retain people who have attended your events in the past is to collect their email addresses. You should also get people to follow you on your social media accounts so that when you tweet or post Facebook updates about your upcoming events, they can see your event there.
Additionally, copywriting for the title and description of the event is extremely important. The headline of the event must grab people’s attention. If the deadline doesn’t resonate with people and doesn’t get them excited, you will have a very difficult time getting the event noticed.
Lastly, the quality of the event is one of your best potential sources for marketing. If the event is great, people will tell others... READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON PROMOTING YOUR EVENT
Social Media Marketing For Your Event
If you are able to record your events and take pictures, post the videos on YouTube, and photos on Facebook and Instagram. Whenever possible tag the attendees in the photos. Then encourage the attendees to share those videos and photos on their own social media accounts. That will help you grow your YouTube, Twitter and Facebook followings and also give you immediate exposure.
An additional great point in time to get people to invite their friends is right after they signed up. At the point of signing up for the event, many people are very upbeat about the event, and there is a reasonably good chance that they might want to invite friends.
Lastly, if your event has speakers or guests, you can invite people to your event who already have a following and respect in the niche in which your event series is in. Inviting people to speak or be a guest at your event gives them instant publicity and exposure. Having an expert at your event makes your event seem better, and makes you also seem like an expert in the business niche. Additionally, having a great guest can help increase attendance and makes the invited expert thankful to you for giving them the extra exposure. You can turn that into a beginning of a professional relationship, and leverage their existing audience to help you promote your own event series.
The Event Must Be Amazing: Quality And Attention To Detail
Whatever you do, make sure that your actual event is great. If your event is great, many people will come back, bring friends, and share it on social media because they will be naturally excited about your events. If the events are mediocre or not as great as people hoped when they attended, they will likely never come back and even if they do tell anyone about your event, they probably won’t have many nice things to say, discouraging others from attending. Remember, a very large part of your event growth and success is the quality of the event. Give the quality of your event a lot of care and thought...READ THE ARTICLE SERIES ON A THOUSAND LITTLE THINGS
When You Need Staff & How To Get Free Staff
Most small events can’t afford to hire staff. Even organizers of mid-size events don’t always want to pay people to help them run the events because that cuts into the profit. Luckily, there is a great way to get lots of free labor. If your event costs money to attend, some people will ask for free admission or very discounted admission because they may be students or simply people who are not in a good financial situation. Simply give them free admission in exchange for free labor at the event!
This strategy can be used even if you have a large event. If you find that you need to hire additional help because you don’t have enough volunteers, try a site like TaskRabbit.com where you can hire people to do random jobs for a single day. You can see a person’s reviews by their other employers, which will give you a sense of whether they are a good employee or not... READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON STAFFING YOUR EVENT
Deciding On Date And Time Of The Event
The most important part of deciding the day and time of the event is to make sure that you schedule the event far enough out to give yourself enough time to effectively promote the event and for your attendees to pencil it into their schedules (especially if they have to travel from out of town to get to your event).
Additionally, do your research to make sure that there are no other major events at the date and time that you plan to run your event. You don’t want to compete with other events for the attention of your target audience.
If your event runs regularly, make sure to run the event during a consistently repeating date and time. That will help some of your most loyal attendees to make your event a part of their routine. But don’t forget to have additional events at other times or days of the week. That can help you draw people who are able to attend then.