You’re an event planner and your key objective is to maintain and increase attendance. Attendees are very interested and excited at the opportunity to attend your event. You’ve convinced them, but there may be an unaccounted party in this scenario that can determine if that attendee registers or not, that person is their boss.
Costs to attend an event can vary, and in some instances, can be very expensive. Often times, registration costs are covered by their employer and is up to their manager to approve it. Overtime budgets have become tight, and it has proven difficult for potential attendees to prove ROI to their employer.
One of the best ways you can support your attendance levels and your delegates is to have a business case already built for them. How do you go about doing that? Here are some ways you can best equip your attendees to convince their boss.
Create a Sub-Page
Many large events are already creating landing pages or sub-pages on their website and naming the tab ‘Convince Your Boss’ or ‘Why Register’. It is an easy way delegates can forward a link through email to their manager to provide an overview of the event and emphasize the value of attending. Some key information you’ll want to have on this micro-site is:
A Snapshot Of The Event – How long the event has been going on, how many people generally attend, and key activities such as Tradeshow components. A video sizzle reel works great for this.
Learning Highlights – A summary of the content that will be delivered and what attendees will learn.
Testimonials – From previous year’s attendees, specifically speaking to the ROI. For example “I was able to network and as a result of this event develop rewarding business partnerships.”
Awards/ Credits – If the event has won any awards for innovation, or if attendees can claim credits from the event, display that information.
Make ROI Clear
Managers want to have a clear understanding of how a delegate’s time and attendance will benefit their business. Making the return on their investment evident through the content of your event and messaging will help your delegates understand their objectives in attending and equip them to align those objectives back to their business. When putting together your event program, pull topics of interest but ensure all sessions have a clear understanding of what they would like attendees to walk away with – and include that in your session description. For example, if your session topic is Understanding Emerging Technologies, your description might look something like: Understand the new technology solutions so you can use them more efficiently in your day today. Doing this can ensure your sessions stay on track and that year over year, your attendees are in-fact walking away with value from your event.
Provide Credits (Where Applicable)
Some industries and professions require credits for designations. If you plan events for a field that uses accreditations, crediting your event can be a compelling factor in how much registration you receive. If you compete for attendees in a particular market that offers credits, approving your events can elevate your exposure and turn out. Be sure to check the process involved for both crediting the event and how attendees go about claiming the credits.
Spotlight Soft Skills
In addition to having business objectives, what are some soft skills an attendee will learn at your event?
Perhaps your event offers great communication skills or best practices on leadership. Soft skills may not always be a part of KPI’s but they definitely offer value and can benefit the personal and professional development of an attendee. It’s a great practice to tie back soft skill development to the overall value of your event. Soft Skills may actually be the greatest value you can offer on a long-term scale.
The overall goal is to help your attendee approach their leader and support them in positioning the scenario so the leader approves their attendance and registration; to really, make it easy and more accessible for your attendees to justify the registration cost. If you are able to present your case in such a manner, you can maintain and increase your registration numbers, perhaps maybe even convince their boss to attend too!
If you would like to continue the discussion on how you can structure your event and provide more value to your clients, please connect with us.