Events are one of the best ways for niche magazines to increase brand awareness and reach new audiences. It can also be a highly profitable additional revenue stream for publishers…if they do it right and watch the costs. (Ever pay $80 per gallon for luke-warm hotel coffee?)
Carl Landau, Niche Media’s Grand Poobah, has been creating events for over a decade and recently celebrated the 10th Anniversary of the Niche Media Conference in Austin.
Here are his top ten tips for successful event management:
1. Start planning 18 months out, whether it’s a new event or not. 3 more tips for pre-event planning
2. Get key players on board quickly. Look for speakers and sponsors who will be good-will ambassadors for you and know your brand.
3. Blogs are a great way to build audience prior to an event.
4. Although it’s tempting, don’t let vendors sign up as attendees. An ideal ratio of attendees to sponsors is 10-to-1.
5. But always, always, always treat your event sponsors like gold.
6. Choose speakers based on speaking ability and presentation skills, not just on knowledge. “Expert” does not necessarily equal “inspiring speaker.”
7. Never forget who your real bosses are: the Attendees!
8. Add in fun. Attendees having fun learn and retain more. Make sure they have plenty of time for networking, too.
9. Promote at least 4 deadlines building up to the event to increase attendance. You know, super-early bird, early bird, etc. They work!
10. Raise prices. Attendees and sponsors expect that a successful annual event will have some increases. Try tiered packaging strategies for sponsors and add-on workshops for attendees to provide more choice and value.
P.S. Carefully monitor your profit margin. Remember that you are a niche magazine AND you are in the event business!
Niche Media has created super niched-out events specifically for magazine publishers for over 12 years. We’ve helped pave the way for the era of boutique events that connect specific audiences and provide great educational, friendly and super-fun environments!
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