Hosting (and attending) LIVE events are one of the best ways to grow your business. Yet, many of you continue to hide behind your computers, tucked away in your offices, ‘hoping and wishing’ for business to come your way.
It just doesn’t happen that way folks. I want to focus on the aspect of YOU hosting your own live event.
I recognize that many entrepreneurs don’t do this and it’s typically because they don’t know how, or even where to begin. (All the more reason you should be working with a business coach!) Entrepreneurs really do love attending live events. It is one of the best ways to network, learn from people who have ‘been there, done that’ and who are sharing their success strategies, have fun, work ON your business rather than getting stuck IN your business, develop new relationships and so much more.
Well, there are all those reasons and MORE as to why you should be hosting your own live event. But I know, from personal experience, that there is much more behind the scenes to pulling off a successful event than any of you can imagine.
Let me give you 4 of the most critical steps to hosting a live event that will help to get you started, at least. Because, at some point, this is one thing you are really going to want to do.
STEP #1 – KNOW YOUR WHY. Just scheduling a live event without knowing your WHY is stupid. Get anchored in the reason and rationale for doing this – and then develop your theme and your vision. Get really clear on what it is going to be about and for whom. This becomes your foundation. ‘Bright Shiny Object (BSO)” syndrome can really become a distraction when you decide to host a live event. Don’t go there. Get very clear on the why, the theme, the vision – and keep your eye on that at all times.
Planning day with Denise
STEP #2 – CREATE A PLAN. The plan should be created at least 8-10 months out (especially for a 3-day event). If you’ve never hosted a live event before, start out with a one-day experience. Get your feet wet. Learn some of the critical do’s and do not’s of a live event because, as I mentioned above, there is SO MUCH that goes on behind the scenes to position you to run/host a flawless presentation to a room full of people. The plan should incorporate everything from:
– The date
– The place (city, venue)
– The times
– The audience (who do you want there, how will you get them there, where will you do your promotions)
– Your content (what will you teach and in what way)
– Your sponsors (if applicable)
– The pricing
– The offer
– The follow-up
STEP #3 – GET A TEAM TOGETHER. Hosting a live event takes a village. It really does. Even when I started hosting one-day events a few years ago, it takes a team to support you in every piece of what needs to happen. And now, with my major 3-day events, there are a lot of people on my team, including:
– My own team
– My event management team (who handle everything from site location to contract negotiation to on-site management, etc.)
– An a/v team
– My graphics person
– My web designer (the event page is a separate creation unto itself)
– My own business coach who guides me every step of the way
– My lawyer
– My insurance agent
To name just the key players! To have this kind of team assembled enables me to focus on what I need to do best – create and deliver amazing content!
STEP #4 – HAVE A BUDGET. When I hosted my first one-day event a few years ago, I had no idea how to put it all together – let alone the key piece which was ‘the offer’ that would be made at the end of the day, creating the opportunity for the audience to go to the next step. When you have the right people in the audience at the right time in the right place, it all comes together beautifully – when you are prepared and know what you are doing! Thank goodness for my business coach who guided me on this – positioning me to generate $32,000 of revenue at that first one-day event. For my 3-day events, the budget (expenses AND revenue) have grown significantly. You must plan your budget for every little detail and, believe me, it adds up quickly. (Do you have ANY idea how much that cup of coffee at a hotel venue costs? Let alone the audio visual equipment? Etc. etc. etc. etc.) You must have a coach guide you on this or you could, quite frankly, lose your shirt! Many entrepreneurs have – and I don’t want that for you.
Live events are a blast. I love hosting them. I love delivering great content. And they are also a LOT of work. Pre-planning is critical.