5 Reasons You Need to Host a Live Event This Year
No, I’m not talking about the Kardashians...I’m talking about people craving the need to connect IN-PERSON through a conference, a workshop or a retreat.
Some of your favorite SaaS businesses, online entrepreneurs, and bloggers are sowing the seeds of creating a big event for their communities (I know because I’ve been taking inquiry calls from them!), which means it’s becoming more and more common for people to get together in-person as a way to feel connected to a larger community.
And? In person experiences are AWESOME. If you’re someone who enjoys teaching the knowledge that you have, in real time, with your people, there is NO online medium that even compares to people being in the room. It can be a life-changing experience for both you AND your attendees, and is different than almost any other product that businesses sell.
Because you’re reading this blog, I wanted to mention that I’m also working with really big companies (who you definitely know!) who are committed to starting an event specifically to help build connection in our often disconnected world.
But WHY are these companies hosting these events? And what does that mean for you as a small business who is thinking about hosting their first high-end retreat or workshop for your audience? Why is it even important to host an event as a small business?
Don’t worry, I’ve got you. Today, we’re talking all about WHY live events are so powerful for small business owners (ESPECIALLY service providers!) and why it will change your business to get in the room with your best clients and prospects.
Your audience needs to get to meet you in a more intimate way.
Today, our businesses are increasingly becoming more and more digital. There is a metric TON of information out there like “5 Steps to Work from Home” and “8 Ways to Take Your Business Completely Online”. Which is awesome! I work from home sometimes, and I love it.
However, if you’re a completely digital business or your run a product or service-based team that works almost entirely remotely with clients, you’re going to miss out on some key elements to growing your company, not only because you don’t really know what your audience needs, but you haven’t actually gotten face-to-face with your customers to see how they interact with your product AND how they interact with each other.
One of the crucial parts of customer service is having your customers in a room to learn from each other, which helps you identify the golden threads of where you need to lean in for your audience.
Your audience needs to know each other and you need to be the connector.
I sort of started to hint at this above, but one of the biggest reasons that attendees come to a conference or a workshop is to meet other people who are facing the same challenges that they are. You may have a client-based business for the most part and that’s awesome! But if your clients don’t know each other, you’re missing out on the chance for your clients to see you as the connector of a relationship that could be valuable for them AND for you.
I’ve connected hundreds of women through my own live events and there are so many women who say to me “I met so-and-so through one of your events and we’ve done so many collaborations.”
Those are the kinds of relationship bonds you want to build for your community because they will always remember you as the person who connected them, which is CRUCIAL to building the strength of your community.
The more bonds you build for your community, the stronger your community will be, and the more loyal your clients will be...which means every time you launch a new product, service, or increase your rates? You’ll have followers who stick with you because you’ve created a place for them to belong like no other.
You need to increase your rates and a live event is a perfect high-ticket way to connect with prospects and clients.
This one is for my service providers and my people who are sort of barely scraping by with low-dollar projects.
First of all, good for you for starting a business and putting yourself out there. This is hard stuff and you’ll have to confront a LOT of parts of yourself in order for you to be successful in gaining the types of clients that you want. And if you’re in that stage where you’re starting to get clients more consistently but you need to make more money per client? Hosting a live event with either existing clients, past clients, or prospects is a great way to show clients that you’re a thought leader and that you have the skills to actually help them move forward with whatever their struggles are.
You can monetize your workshop one of two ways:
1. You can charge a high ticket price (let’s say $1000) for a spot in a workshop and get 10 people at the workshop. Working with you 1:1 is $2000 so your people get a discount on working with you but they still get similar or the same results. This option could be good if you’re having a hard time converting clients for your 1:1 services due to price...now you have a solution for those who give you a pricing excuse!
2. You can create a lower ticket price ($150 for the day of your workshop at 50 people attending), and you can have a “next step” offer for the people who are in the room if they want to work with you more intimately. This is an AWESOME way to start getting more clients in bulk and also have your marketing take care of itself...let’s say you get 50 people in the room at $150, you can likely cover the cost of the event space, food, and A/V, which means you’ve covered your event expenses and everything that you sell post event goes straight to you. Events build all of your platforms (social media since people post about it, newsletter since people want to know when your next event it), so hosting an event is JUST like undertaking a marketing effort...except people are now paying you for that.
Whether you want to host an event JUST for your intimate, highest-paying clients OR if you want to get a bunch of potential clients in the room to sell them into a more intimate way of working with you, then live events are the perfect way to do both of those things.
You want to launch a course but you have no experience teaching to anyone.
This is a BIG one! Let’s say you’re really excited about launching an online course, but you’re worried about developing a ton of content and you want to practice working on your public speaking and teaching before you go all in on the course. The trouble is, launching a course, getting people to show up live, and even getting people to complete the course can be a challenge, so if you want to get faster results, hosting a live workshop is the best way to get started honing your teaching skills and getting real time feedback from your attendees.
As a course owner, I can speak to the experience of people not showing up live and therefore, me wondering if the course is confusing or if they’re just not doing it live with me. When you host an in-person event, people have already shown up, they’re asking questions, and you can see it in their faces about what parts are confusing and what parts are crystal clear. Then, you can go home and tweak your content, knowing that the feedback you received is valid.
You’re ready to start speaking...but the trouble is no one will accept your speaking pitch without proof that you’re an awesome speaker.
This is my favorite one because it’s SUCH a huge hurdle for speakers who want to book more speaking gigs (and as a conference planner, I KNOW that I won’t hire a speaker unless I have a video reel of them speaking). I get asked frequently “How can I get speaking gigs if I don’t have any experience speaking?”
My answer? Host an event! You can work on lots of skills like clarifying your message and understanding what it is that your audience wants to hear if you host your own event, plus you can get footage of you speaking that you can put on your website and send to conference planners so that you can begin speaking more frequently.
Okay, so now that you’re 100% sure WHY an event is important for your business, I have a couple of action items for you.
•If you’re in the preliminary stages of hosting your event, then the best thing that you can do is to download our Event Planning Checklist below. Just drop your email address and it’ll get sent to you straight away!
•Once you’ve done that, tell me one thing in the comments below that is holding you back from hosting your first workshop, retreat, or conference.