Are you hosting a one day event or a multi-day experience? Chances are you want to offer value to your participants . . . but this can only happen if people actually show up. Whether you want to provide connection and encouragement or educate people on a particular topic, attendance is key. But how can you boost attendance when people’s time and money are so limited?
Believe it or not, there are simple ways to bring in a crowd. Consider the following tips to increase attendance at your next event.
6 Ways to Increase Attendance
1. Identify your ideal client. Who do you want at your event? Consider age, gender, geographical location, interest and hobbies. Knowing these details helps you tailor your marketing efforts to the appropriate demographic.
For example, if you are organizing a yoga retreat, then it would be wise to target adults who are passionate about yoga, health, and wellness. You also need to consider your ideal client’s income bracket. Certain retreats may appeal to a large group of people but would require more disposable income than others. Many retreat planners also look for sponsors to help alleviate the cost of a retreat.
2. Do your market research. Now that you know your ideal client, consider what they want. Would they prefer a two-hour workshop or a weekend retreat? Do they want education or encouragement? Are they looking to network with other people in their industry or consume information?
Next, ask yourself, “How is my event different from the competition?” Evaluate your event’s strengths and growth areas. Identify things your event offers that others do not. Promote those important details in your marketing efforts to show your ideal client that your event is worth their time and money.
3. Use the power of social media. Gone are the days of, “If you build it, they will come.” Today’s culture responds to social media so much that the average Facebook user clicks on eight ads per month! Take advantage of this marketing opportunity by placing Facebook and Instagram ads, encouraging your followers to share your posts, and reaching out to your ideal client through direct messaging.
4. Choose your date wisely. Avoid potential date conflicts by considering other events in your industry. Also, check your city’s calendar so you can steer clear of competing events in your area. Finally, consider your ideal client’s “busy season” and work around their schedule, not your own.
5. Location. Location. Location. When choosing a venue for your event, consider a location that is convenient: easy access to an airport, hotel, and restaurants. For example, Gathering Oaks Retreat is only 12 miles from Waco Regional Airport and 8 miles from Downtown Waco.
Also, consider a venue that is within your budget because that will affect your ticket price. Depending on your event, you might want to find a space that is unique and trendy, or relaxing and quiet. Think about the vibe you want to create at your event, and then find a space that contributes to that atmosphere.
6. Offer incentives for early bird registrations. Encourage participants to register early by offering them a lower price point, bonus sessions, or exciting swag! When people sign up early, you’ll create excitement around your event. People will begin experiencing FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) and sign-ups will skyrocket.
Whether you are hosting an online event or an in-person workshop, retreat, conference or meet & greet, the reality is that you are competing for people’s time and money. By implementing the tips listed above, you’ll be on your way to filling seats and creating a successful event faster than you can say, “Welcome, we’re glad you’re here!”