While content is a major factor for delegates deciding if they will attend a conference, many times the destination also plays a key role on whether or not folks attend your conference. Here are 5 things meeting professionals can do prior to the event to make a solid pitch to their membership to attend:
- Speak with the Destination Management Organization (DMO) of your host city about “attendance boosting” ideas so your communication speaks to the local experience your delegates can expect at the convention.
- Emphasize what types of activities are available for the family. Work with a Destination Marketing Company (DMC) to create itineraries for spousal and family programs and include pre and post itineraries. Design it in such a way that your organization bears no risk to the minimum required for a particular activity to move forward. Creating an experience that can be shared with the delegate’s family is a powerful draw and can boost attendance.
- Appeal to the senses of your audience. Use some time at the closing reception of your present year’s event to feature a video, food, drinks and entertainment of the upcoming destination. Convince everyone that they will need to attend to experience more of what they sampled here.
- Use testimonials and video clips from influential people to make the pitch for the destination. It can be from celebrities or well-known members of your association. Ask your CEO or Executive Director to create a ‘Join Us’ video message to introduce the next conference’s theme.
- Explain to your attendees how they are going to come back changed from this event. What will they learn, who will they have an opportunity to meet and what can they do that they won’t be able to experience anywhere else?