Many products have a very short life cycle. Conferences and corporate events fall into that category. You no sooner start promoting it than it’s over. When you ask a prospect to register now, you really mean it. One day after the event is too late.
How do you get an email recipient to make the leap from “this would be a good event to attend,” to, “I’d better register right away,”?
Besides the tried-and-true “early-bird” discount or a premium (these work — use them), here are copy techniques that can boost registrations:
Make It Urgent!
What makes a great registration email? We believe it’s setting a tone of urgency. When bad economic news, corporate debacles and security alerts abound, as they do now, urgency is hardly difficult to achieve.
Urgency sells. Promise leading experts will address your industry’s most pressing concerns or demonstrate how to seize today’s most tantalizing opportunities. For example, now that terrorism is top-of-mind, many IT conferences feature security experts as keynote speakers.
Copy should be fast-paced, compelling, and short. Use words like “immediate,” “critical,” “life or death,” “crucial,” and “imperative.” A good B2B copywriter can make your message stand out and galvanize your event with super-charged, actionable text.
Bear in mind no one has the time or patience for “long-term strategies” (even if that’s what they need most). What people want are:
- “Rapid deployment tactics”
- “Same-day executable techniques”
- “Immediate action plans”
- “Emergency triage measures”
A recent email for a small, C-level roundtable used this insistent approach and pulled 15 registrations (33 percent of the goal) the first day, for a last-minute conference only three weeks away.
Create Excitement For A New Year or Season
Depending on when your conference falls date-wise, you can create a sense of business necessity and excitement by highlighting the seasonal nature of the event:
- January/February Events:
- First Major Industry Event of 2003
- Critical First Quarter Planning Event
- 2003 Kick-Off Event
- March through May Events
- Important Spring 2003 Event
- Crucial Second Quarter Event
- Play up warm weather in appropriate locales
- June Events
- Final Event of the 2003 Spring Season
- Set strategy for the Fall Season
- Time for a “mid-course correction”
- July/August Events
- Strategy sessions for upcoming year
- Combine family vacation/conference
- First Major Fall Event
- Critical Third Quarter Event
- Last chance this year to consult our analysts…
- Final 2003 Event
- Important 2004 Strategy Session
- Fourth Quarter Wrap-Up
- Year-End Event
Of course, each industry has its own important seasons. The idea is to understand your conference’s place in that season and make it the must-attend event for that time of year.
Nobody Likes To Be Left Behind
People want to be at the “in” events in their field. No one wants to miss the really fabulous speaker or product introduction. So …
- If this a popular event year-after-year, make sure you mention it.
- If you’re getting a strong response, hammer that point home.
- If your keynote speaker always draws crowds, mention her session may be “standing-room only.”
Other key phrases include:
- “Industry executives make a point to attend this conference year after their year”
- “It’s not uncommon for attendees to register a year in advance” (or to clear their schedule for this week every year)
- “We received registrations before we sent out the first notice.”
- “Be there when your colleagues from across the country converge at this eagerly-awaited industry event.”
Address Prospects’ Reservations Head-On
It’s no secret people are reluctant to commit money or travel resources in a soft economy. Your prospects are carefully evaluating which events are must-attends, and which they’ll forgo. Take the bull by the horns and address their concerns.
- “You may be thinking of skipping this year’s conference to save money, but this is the most important year ever to attend.” Illustrate how the conference can actually save them money or increase revenues.
- “Selecting the wrong vendor, making the wrong business decision, etc. will cost much more than this conference.” Highlight the high cost of insufficient or outdated information.
- “This is no time to go it alone.” Emphasize the value of getting advice from experts and colleagues, and the hazards of struggling with complex problems alone.
At every opportunity, demonstrate your event’s ROI. Emphasize tangible, unique net takeaways that will add value to their business or career.
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