Business events such as seminars are a tried and tested way of boosting a business’ credibility and brand awareness whilst demonstrating their expertise in a particular area. You can find out more about why professional services firms should hold their own events in this blog.
A lot of work can go into seminars; from choosing an interesting topic that’s of interest to a wide-ranging audience, sourcing relevant speakers and defining your target audience, to finding a venue and deciding on dates. So the last thing you want is to have a really interesting topic and speakers lined up at a fabulous venue but nobody turns up!
Here are our top tips for promoting a seminar to ensure you get people to attend:
Use tech to help you
This could be as easy as listing your event on an event platform such as Eventbrite. Not only does Eventbrite work as a searchable event listing website, it also enables you to easily manage your attendees, send out email communications and automatic reminders. And if you don’t charge a delegate fee, it’s free to use.
There are also various other event apps available that can facilitate delegate interaction through pre-event chats and the ability to set up meetings.
Adopt a multichannel approach
With shorter attention spans than ever before, people need multiple reminders that an event is coming up, and why they should attend.
- Use your company database to send out e-shots. We would recommend at least three.
- Include the information on social media and tag all relevant speakers and sponsors to ensure the widest reach possible
- If you have a company Facebook page, list it as an event on there. For a fairly small cost you can even promote the event to your target audience
- Get your staff to send out personal invites to their contacts or mention it when they’re in a meeting with their clients
- Include the event on your website
- You could even include details of an event instead of hold music when people are waiting to be connected by switchboard
As always, it pays off to be organised and have a messaging pack ready before you start actively promoting the event. Be creative in your messaging, clearly spell out what benefits people get from attending, and use different media such as gif’s and videos to re-frame your message and keep it interesting
Make it as easy as possible to book
This might go without saying, but the less barriers there are for people to book the quicker they will sign up. I recently came across an event that asked delegates to complete and sign an attached Word document, email that back to the organiser and post a cheque or do BACS transfer for payment. In this day and age, long winded and complicated booking processes can turn delegates off attending your event in the first place.
Generally speaking, a lead in time of at least 3 months works best. This will ensure that your potential attendees’ diaries are still fairly free and leave you enough time to plan, test and tweak your promotional schedule.
Leverage your network
Get speakers, sponsors and strategic partners involved in helping you promote the seminar. Sharing your messaging pack or example social media posts will make it easier for them to do so. If it’s a paid for event, you may want to consider offering discounted options to your strategic partners so there’s a benefit to them promoting it to their contacts
If you’d like any help with your event promotion, why not give us a call or drop us an email to see how we can help.