The Atout France seminar bags that we supplied
Chances are, if you are a small business owner, you are a professional in your field. You may have forgotten that you hold a wealth of information that most people don't know. It's easy to think that after years of being immersed in your profession, that what you know is just common sense. It's only when you start talking to people outside your industry, do you realise that you are more capable and knowledgeable than you think!
Lets look at example of an Accountant (you can replace 'Accountant' with what is relevant to you). As an Accountant, you may think the 5 most crucial aspects of accounting for small business is just common sense! But you can be assured that people thinking of going into business, and those in business, might not have any knowledge of accounting. In fact, there is so much information out there, that people might be missing the basics, due to the overload of information they are given. As an Accountant, you can break it down and people will love you for it!
Everyone in business knows something on a subject that others know nothing about. If you have the opportunity to teach people about a subject that will benefit them (and ultimately benefit you), go for it!
To set up an event you need to consider the following:
- figure out what people want to know: as a professional, you might find a common question amongst your clients or even Googling your industry, you might find people asking the same questions. If you answer these common and important questions, in an easy to understand manner, you could be seen as the professional in the field, that people needing your service will feel comfortable approaching you, because you know your stuff!
- content: make sure you deliver valuable information. Although you will want to advertise your services and drill into people your points of difference over your competitors, make sure that at seminars, you introduce yourself and your business in a quick introduction, then get onto the content that people have come to see you about. Make the content interesting, easy to understand, educational and to the point.
- invite: state clearly what you are giong to teach at your semiar. A good idea is list how many things they are going to learn. Example: "5 accounting basics that all small business owners need to know". Here it outlines how many bits of information - if it just said 'accounting basics' people will think they are going to get overloaded with information, and may be hesitant to attend. 'Accounting basics' is the topic - here you are clearly indicating what people are going to learn about, and 'for small business owers' - so people know that the content will be relevant to them. Otherwise, if you dont explain what it's for, people could think its for individuals for their tax returns, so you may get the wrong audience.
- location: if possible, if you are a local service provider (eg Accountant), have the seminar in your office. This will mean people in your area and surrounds (your target market) will find it easy to attend. If location doesnt matter to you, try and find a location that is central (ie city CBD).
- time: think about the time that would be most convenient for your audience. Would straight after work be best? you dont want it too early, so they have to leave work early, but you dont want it too late - otherwise people will go home then might not have the energy to venture out again to attend your seminar.
- catering: even if you dont have the budget for a spread, at the very least, ensure tea, coffee and biscuits are available. People may be coming straight from work and need a little pick up. It will also show you are caring. The last thing you want to do is look stingy!
- giveaway: it's important that your attendees go away with something - whether it's a flyer with your call to action, your contact details and even a summary of your teachings. A voucher for your service will also be well recieved. Even a promotion - like 'refer a friend and get 50% off your next service with us' can create more customers. Giveaways that are well recieved, especially in a branded bag. Everyone loves goodie bags! To make your seminars and your business look even more professional, you can brand your event bags with your business logo or even a call to action.
By hosting an event, you will be seen as a leader in your field. As long as you structure the content right, and teach your adience valuable information, your generosity is bound to pay off. People attending your event where you generously share information, will see you as the go-to person / the proffesional in your field who they can rely on to give them the correct information. They are most likely to refer you onto friends and family too.
Clara Cassidy, Founder and Marketing Manager of Custom Printed Bags & Boxes, is a marketing professional with years of experience in branding, promotions and events.