Okay, so let’s continue with the FINAL installment on our journey of what YOU need to know when it comes to offering up a live event to YOUR tribe. What I know is this: Live events and retreats CHANGE your business (and your life).
We dove deep in part 1 of our series on a few key elements to consider: dates, venue, and agenda.
In part 2 of our series, we explored your website, email campaign and launching.
In our 3rd and final installment, we will look at creating an effective stick campaign; your self-care routine before, during and after the event; and making money from your event.
1. CREATING AN EFFECTIVE STICK CAMPAIGN
When I hosted my first Retreat for Goddesses in 2011, my coach at the time told me I had to create a stick campaign to keep my registrants engaged after they signed up. I had no idea what she was talking about.
I just thought when people signed up, that was it … I’d be seeing them at the event a few months later. Easy breezy. Wrong.
I don’t know what it is, but nothing gets people more excited and scared simultaneously than signing up to attend a live event. You need to STAY IN TOUCH with your attendees after they sign up to let them know you believe in their choice and you will make their attendance worth their while. Otherwise, peeps start getting cold feet, scheduling conflicts start emerging and cancellations occur (you’ll get these regardless, but a stick campaign will help reduce this).
On the cancellation front, do make sure you have a clear cancellation policy in place so all parties know how this works. Answer these questions? Is there a fee to cancel? By what date will cancellations be accepted? What happens to their registration fee when they cancel by a certain date? Is it refunded in full, refunded minus a cancellation fee, credited to their account for a future purchase with your company or forfeited all together if they cancel last minute? Or are cancellations not allowed, but tickets can be transferred? YOU DECIDE and stick to it.
So, back to the stick campaign. For my 1st annual Retreat for Goddesses, I went all-out with my stick campaign and sent all of my registrants (I had about 16 that year) “Goddess Guidance Oracle Cards” by Doreen Virtue. I loved those cards and wanted everyone to have a deck. I figured this was my year to lay the foundation of the event.
You do NOT need to spend a lot on a stick campaign. I actually spent too much on this in my first year. At around $10 – $15/mailing, this wasn’t a sustainable strategy. You live and learn.
I sent attendees at my 1st annual Retreat for Goddesses a pack of these “Goddess Guidance Oracle Cards” as a gift and part of my “stick campaign.”
For ALCHEMY Live happening later this month, we offered all gals who signed up by a certain date a ticket into my new digital 4-week course the Tribe Building Bootcamp. It’s an awesome way to get the gals rocking prior to coming together LIVE and in person.
For your event, you can easily create a Facebook group or event page where your peeps can connect with each other and get excited prior to the event. They can also make travel plans and release some of their pre-event jitters!
The point: create a pre-event “stay-in-touch” campaign to ensure your peeps feel comfortable and excited about taking this leap with you!
2. SELF-CARE ROUTINE
Okay, so you MUST take exquisite care of yourself before, during and after the event. Leading a multi-day live event is one of THE most intense experiences of my career. It will be the same for you if you really go deep with your people, which I believe is what they want.
Here’s an idea of what I did to nurture my mind, body and spirit leading up to my live event last year:
2 WEEKS PRIOR
- Shopping at my favorite boutique in my town for a few dresses that I felt and looked great in. I tend to go for SOLID bright colors as they photograph the best
- Hair appointment! Cut and highlight with my go-to stylist
- Lots of yoga
1 WEEK PRIOR
- Writing and visualizing about my intention for the event
- More yoga
1 DAY PRIOR
- Setting up my “out of office” email
ONSITE AT THE EVENT
- My team really “takes over” and do what they do best at the event.I vigilantly protect my energy!
- I have my own sleeping room (I don’t recommend sharing) and lay down between sessions when I need to rest (even when I don’t nap)
- Eating very well – lots of protein, greens and fruit
- Drinking LOTS of water. Tea in the morning
- Massage on Day 2 in the lovely, award-winning spa
- Yoga and meditation
- Standup paddleboarding
- Writing and visualizing about my intention for the event
- Sharing from the heart, listening to the stories from our attendees, being present
- Being grateful for it ALL, trusting the FLOW of the Universe
I led guided meditation at my live event in 2013. This was hugely powerful for me, as well as the women who were interested in this tool.
AFTER THE EVENT
- More yoga!
- Reaching out to all attendees to express my gratitude for coming
- Reaching out to clients with special gifts who stepped up into the Business Adventure School, my yearlong coaching, training and mastermind program
- Lots of REST!
- 2-week vacation 2 weeks after the event ends
- Deciding when/where to host my 2014 live event (it’s happening later this month!)
This is my method (and I’ll let you know what I do differently after ALCHEMY Live soon).
Yours can look TOTALLY different. The key is to include PLENTY of time to nurture yourself on the deepest level. You will be AMAZED at what hosting a live event “brings up” for you – the good, the bad, the ugly and the beautiful. You’ll grow more than you thought possible. This is why you are on the plant. TO GROW and help HEAL the peeps you are here to serve.
And one final point here: YOU WILL NEED an assistant to help you prep for the event and help you run things onsite. If you don’t already have one, get creative about finding help. This is crucial to your success.
3. MAKING MONEY FROM YOUR EVENT
Let’s get serious for a bit here. The purpose of your business is to MAKE MONEY. Your purpose might be something totally different (it probably is), but don’t confuse your purpose with your business’ purpose. You are ALLOWED to make money from your live event and SHOULD make money from your live event. Deal?
Creating, hosting and leading a live event takes TOO much work for you not to make a profit on your efforts. You’ll see.
I’m getting all intense on this point because I didn’t really get this with my first live event and when I crunched the numbers after it was all said and done, guess how much I made on the event?
Yup. Ouch! Mind you, I was 4 months post-partum with my second son Luke when I ran that Retreat so I was just happy I pulled it off! But all those late nights I worked to get the details right and “perfect” and all I had left to show for my efforts was $1,500. I was disappointed.
BUT … it wasn’t all for nothing because I DID launch my brand new coaching, training and mastermind program at that event and signed up about 4 clients from that event. Then I launched that program to my whole list a few weeks later and signed up about 8 more people. This led to consistent cash flow and awesome client experiences.
I also had a photographer at the event and got GREAT photos for future marketing efforts. This built my brand in huge ways. I’ve hired a photographer for every single event and consider this a very wise investment. You want VISUAL reminders of the magic you helped create. This is a major boon to your biz.
At my upcoming ALCHEMY Live, not only will it be a transformational experience on the deepest level, but it will also be the first opportunity my tribe has to apply for membership in the 2014 – 2015 crew of the Business Adventure School, a 12-month mastermind and coaching program unlike anything else in the market.
The cover of our program brochure.
The Business Adventure School is hugely powerful for my clients AND it’s a profitable venture for my company that brings in regular, consistent revenue. When you’re an entrepreneur, cash flow is king.
Your live event can be a LAUNCHPAD for something spectacular that you share with your tribe that will change their life AND your business. So many of your attendees WANT to go deeper with you and continue to have access to the possibilities that you and your program will help them see. You’re doing them a SERVICE by offering them an experience to continue working with you.
If you’re making an offer at your event (and I typically recommend this), incentivize your peeps to take action AT THE EVENT. Otherwise, it’s very likely that you’ll lose them. Make it easy for them to make a decision. Make them feel SAFE and PSYCHED to work with you.
This is HOW you’ll make money from your live event in my experience. And offering up opportunities for your tribe to invest in themselves through your offerings is a gift in the highest form. You’re providing a divine opportunity for your people to continue the transformation started at your event. Nothing is sweeter or more profound. Everyone wins.
Like what you read here? This was the third and final installment in this series. Thanks for reading!
Hey – If you’re already signed up for our upcoming event ALCHEMY Live, see you there! Magic will be happening! If you didn’t grab a ticket yet, hop on before it’s too late.