Offline marketing is sometimes ignored by solo service professionals – but it shouldn’t be! By holding workshops and in-person appearances in your local area, you can increase your income, raise your public profile, and build a foundation for a stronger business in the future. In addition, you help build your relationship with your audience. You’ll be able to get to know your local target market while you’re earning revenue from the event AND laying the foundation for future upsells to other products and/or services.
Here are four steps you can use to create a winning local event that can build your solo service practice.
1. Find a venue to host your event.
First, you’ll need a suitable place to host your event. Check with your local chamber of commerce, your library, your local SBDC office or other office/meeting spaces in the area. You may also try a restaurant or a co-working space. For example, here in the Bay Area we have a company called Sandbox Suites that rents meeting spaces inexpensively. The size of the space that you reserve will give you a ballpark figure for how many attendees you can accept.
2. Charge an inexpensive registration fee.
An inexpensive registration fee will make your events a stream of income for you. Depending on the length of the event and the value to your audience you can price it anywhere from $29-$99, but keep the fee low so it’s a “no brainer” decision for attendees. You can set up an online registration form with EventBrite, so you’ll know how many participants will attend. If you expect you’ll be hosting regular events, you can use MeetUp to organize your group and schedule recurring meetings.
3. Over deliver on information.
Even though the event is low cost, you shouldn’t skimp on the information! Over deliver on info and make sure that your audience walks away with an actionable plan that they can follow when they leave. You can create a worksheet or workbook that attendees can use to take notes. It will keep them invested in your presentation and give them something to use when they leave. On the day of the event, be sure to bring your worksheets, your business cards, extra pens, name tags, and the RSVP list so you’re prepared.
4. End the presentation with a strong call to action and irresistible offer.
Your attendees will probably want to know more information than what you have the time to present, so make sure that they know how they can continue working with you! Create a special offer for your services that is just for attendees. The offer should only be available on site that day. It should build on the training that you offered in the presentation so they can pick up where you’ve left off on that day. Offer a payment plan so it’s affordable, and wrap up your presentation with a call to action urging them to take advantage of this offer NOW!
With these four keys, you’ll have the makings of a professional quality, informative, and money making workshop. You’ll be able to make money from the event and build up your network of potential clients in your local area. Follow up with attendees regularly by sending them a written thank you card, and offering to add them to your email newsletter list. Doing local workshops and classes can open up a whole new door for your business.
Your Action Plan for this Week:
- Develop a presentation or workshop based on actionable and important information that your target audience would love. Keep your presentation under an hour and make sure you allow time for questions.
- Make sure that your presentation delivers a lot of value, and end the presentation with a call to action to work with you further. Create a onetime offer that picks up where your presentation leaves off.
- Find a location that can host your event and pick a date. Start marketing your event to your local customers and build up interest. Use EventBrite or MeetUp to organize your signups.
- Follow up with your attendees by contacting them with a postcard a few days after the event. Offer to add them to your email list at the event so they can receive your monthly email newsletter.