Looking to Sell Out Your Conference? Here are some Incentive Ideas

The amount of work you put into delivering a conference is HUGE – and if the room isn’t full, associations can be left feeling like it was all for nothing.

Low attendance can be deflating for many – your staff/team; your sponsors; your speakers, and frankly, the attendees that do show up may be jaded.  So, when you need a boost in your numbers, consider these ideas:

  1. Discounts/Giveaways – if you can offer a giveaway or discount that will boost your numbers, DO IT.  Examples can be “Sharing The Love” on Valentine’s Day with a 1-Day flash sale, or offering those who register before a certain date comp access to an add-on workshop, etc.
  2. Use the FOMO you are creating – we are all using social media, in whatever format, and frankly, those who attend events not only are showing up to access fantastic education and networking, but to capture the moments for their own social networks – so they can tell people “I was there when”… Association’s can use this to their own advantage.  Like the image used here, when we were working with FMAV on the Event Canvas process for the 2019 Engaging Associations Forum, we took a behind the scenes photo to share our process and generate some buzz! It’s so easy to implement this for your conference too!
  3. Target your past participants – create a special email, postcard mailing, social media post tagging them, whatever it is, reach out to them, encourage them to come back!
  4. Testimonials, testimonials, testimonials – we cannot say this enough, if you are able to gather testimonials about past experiences, and use them for your upcoming marketing plans, you need to do this.  It’s considered a must-have in my books.
  5. Personal calls – reach out to your lists – touch base with them to remind them of upcoming deadlines, early bird rates, and make sure they are getting your info.  Assess the situation – where in the decision-making process are they? What can you provide that will help them make a decision?

If you need help boosting your attendance at your next conference or event, please do not hesitate to reach out.

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