Picture the scene. You’re running an event and it’s about six weeks out. You look at the registration list and your heart sinks a little. You have about half the number delegates you forecasted at this stage. By now you were hoping to be a lot closer to your double point. You start to get that nagging feeling: maybe it’s time to call it.
You look at the cancellation policy with the venue, AV and catering suppliers and realise you have another couple of weeks before you have to make this difficult decision. You resolve to press on and get those bums on seats.
a. send out another email campaign to your database
b. call up your telesales agency and get them fired up
c. review your strategy and define a new plan of attack
In all likelihood the answer has to be all three, but for goodness sake start by reviewing your strategy. There may still be time to make a fundamental change that will have a greater impact.
First of all look at your actual product:
• Is the agenda compelling enough?
• Do you have the right blend of speakers: big brand case studies, leading suppliers, sponsors and consultants?
• Is your keynote speaker worth the price tag?
• Is the venue a pull factor?
Then look at your promotional mix:
• Do you have a compelling message that explains why a delegate should register?
• Is the messaging told consistently across your communications?
• Is your website easy to navigate and is the registration page working?
• Do you have a large enough and well targeted customer database?
Then review your pricing:
• Are you inline with the competition?
• Was your early bird generous enough?
• Have you adequately motivated and incentivised your partners?
Once you have reviewed these factors, you can define where your strategy needs some work. Perhaps it’s the core proposition that’s not resonating. Maybe the website is just not that easy to use. Perhaps your database is not as fresh as it once was.
Iron out the bumps in your strategy first, and then get on with the tactical execution.
Emails and TM campaigns can be organised quickly, but remember these wise words: “if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.”
If you don’t change the strategy up a notch, the chances of your tactical manoeuvres making a big difference are pretty slim.
Look at your strategy and assess what has worked, what hasn’t and make a strategic change.