When you create your Winning Workshop, you want to be sure you have people actually attending the event. One way to sell your event is through your marketing plan. Obviously, your marketing plan is crucial to getting the “butts in seats” so to speak. In the next few blog posts, I will talk about the three “T”s of marketing your workshop. Today, we start with the first “T”: Timing.
Timing is an important key in marketing your workshop. For a free workshop that lasts a couple of hours, you do not need too much lead time. 2-3 weeks of well targeted marketing is usually sufficient. It doesn’t take much planning ahead to get out of the office for a couple of hours or get someone to watch the kids. If you start marketing it much further out than that, people may sign up and forget about it and not show. Or, they will think that they will sign up closer to the event, because something else may come along. And then they forget about it. 2-3 weeks is perfect to get it on their calendar, get them to sign up and show up.
Now if you are planning a larger event that requires a larger investment and that will have people coming from out of town, you want to start marketing way ahead of time. You may not want to sell tickets right away, but you want to get it on people’s calendar and get them excited about it. Then about 60-90 days out you hit the promotions hard.
If you want to draw people from all over the nation, you’ll want to start seeding at least 6 months in advance. You can start dropping hints and even do a “Save The Date” campaign. You can get people excited about the upcoming event. You then continue with your “Early Bird” campaign, where you try to fill seats at a reduced price, or offer special bonuses for signing up early.
Then you graduate to the full fledged promotional campaign and hit it hard. One of the biggest mistakes people make is to stop marketing too soon. It takes consumers 7-10 marketing impressions before they buy, but most marketers stop after 3-5 messages. The key is to never stop marketing your event.
There will be people that sign up at the last minute. Some people just need a little longer to make the decision. Maybe they don’t have all the information yet. Maybe it takes them a little longer to make arrangements. Maybe they need more impressions before it finally becomes a “must attend”. Don’t stop marketing your workshop until you open the doors. You never know if that last minute attendee will become your best client.
Be sure to check back tomorrow for the second “T” in marketing your workshop or event; Tools.