6 Months Out
It’s never too early to start promoting an event! People need to see a message at least 7 times in order to act on it, and that message should occur over time and across multiple platforms. Start now!
Develop an incentives package, such as deep discounts and bonuses, for early registrations.
Create your website sales page. Ensure that online ordering is working.
Make an announcement about the event in your organization’s newsletter.
Add the workshop as an event on Facebook and post it to your Facebook timeline.
Start contacting potential partners that can help promote your event to their lists.
Create a postcard and/or inexpensive flyer. Identify key locations and happenings for placement of handouts or flyers.
3-6 Months Out
This is when you might be tempted to slack off. You think you’ve already done a bunch of marketing and that you should allow your message to percolate with recipients. Don’t do this! Ramp up your marketing efforts even more!
Mention the event 2x a month in blog posts (ask me for a guest post or interview!).
Post it weekly on your Facebook page – varying the time of day you post.
Tweet it several times a week during high-traffic times.
Cite the workshop in each issue of your newsletter.
Send at least 5 personal emails each week to encourage other organizations to spread the word about your event. Follow up as necessary.
Make phone calls to key alliances that can attract attendees.
Follow up all online registrations with confirmation welcome letters. Always remember that these people are your guests and should be treated as such.
1-2 Months Out – Early registration ends
There should be a big push to sell seats right before early registration ends. This is when you will receive the majority of your sign-ups.
Continue all of the promotions you’ve been doing for the last several months. Don’t let up!
Send a press release and reminders to all alliances to announce the end of early registration. Don’t forget to include the key arts bloggers in your area.
Schedule a series of 2-3 emails to your list with the early registration deadline reminder. These emails should be specific to the workshop and include no other offerings or announcements.
1 Week to 1 Month Out
If you haven’t sold out, expand your efforts to fill the seats. You want it to be a success, don’t you?
Send at least two more emails to your list.
5 Days Out
Relax. You’ve done the best you can, and you have a good crowd coming! Kick up your heels and relax – but only for about an hour. Then you can start tending to workshop details for your guests.