Driving more attendance to an event is always a common concern. With the constant change in technology, new methods of driving attendance have emerged. We believe the best way to drive more attendance is a mixture of new technology and traditional means.
Here are a few tips that we think will drive people to your events and, more importantly, keep them coming back.
Market to clean data
In twelve months as much as one third of database contacts can become obsolete. If you want to maximize your marketing ROI then validate or clean your data before you send your invitation.
Make It Unique
If you want people to attend your event you are going to have to have a clear reason why they should come. Applying all or some of these tips can increase your response rates by up to 30%.
Even before you send out the invitations, mention the event to people who comprise your target market. These may be people in your mailing list and on your social networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, among others.
Send an email invitation
About six to eight weeks prior to your event, send out an official invitation to your contact or target guest list. A personalized invitation makes the recipient feel wanted and can help compel him or her to register for your event. The invite should clearly outline the key event details and explain the benefits of attending from the recipient’s point of view. Keep the invitation itself short and to the point. To provide additional information about your event, link to the event homepage.
Invite, invite, invite
One of the keys to achieving attendance to your meeting is by inviting people early, and continue reminding them about the event even if they have confirmed attendance. It’s important to generate excitement around the event. Traditional printed invitations are appropriate, and it is now generally acceptable to rely on technology to convey your invitation. Try this approach:
- Mention the event to guests before sending invites.
- Send a save the date early in the planning process (paper or electronic).
- Send a detailed invitation, including agenda highlights (paper or electronic).
- Forward the detailed invitation again with a personalised note (electronic).
- Formally call guests and extend a personal invite to the event.
If your association publishes a trade magazine, consider doing an advertising exchange with another industry trade publication to promote the meeting.
Team up with event partners
Partnering with other firms or associations not only helps you pool resources, but helps increase the credibility of the event. They also provide invaluable networking opportunities and a unique enthusiasm. Make sure you list the team partners on your website, social media and in your marketing pieces.
Get Attendees Involved
Make your event memorable by engaging people in hands-on activities.
Leverage your network
Ask your top clients and peer network to comment and tweet about the event. Give them brief phrases they can simply copy and paste. Have them note on LinkedIn that they’re interested in attending the event. Your message will reach out into their contacts, further extending your reach even though they aren’t attending.
How do you turn invitees into attendees at your events?