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Category: Leads · 4 min read

8 Tips for Running a Great Seminar

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on November 5, 2019

author profile photo

on November 5, 2019

Group of attendees sitting and listening to the presenter

When was the last time you ran a seminar? When was the last time you invited potential clients to an event, to help them learn about their retirement options and introduce yourself? If it’s been a while, it may be good to think about doing another one in the near future. Seminars can be one of the best and most effective ways to get more leads and close more business. 

But there’s a right way and a wrong way to run a seminar, and doing it poorly can lead to a bad first impression. To help you put on the best possible seminar for your attendees, I’ve put together these eight suggestions. 

 

1. Try it Without the Dinner 

Over the years, there has been a tendency to offer attendees a free dinner during the seminar. And a lot of people have success with doing it this way. While it’s nice to provide dinner for your attendees, it also may lessen the chances of your attendees coming because they’re interested in your topic, and increase the chances of them coming because they want free food. So, switch it up and try not offering dinner. By not offering a meal, you may attract more people who want to hear what you have to say. 

There’s a right way and a wrong way to run a seminar, and doing it poorly can lead to a bad first impression.

2. Pick Your Venue Wisely 

Where you have your seminar is very important. It can shape your attendees’ view of you and your seminar, so choose the location wisely. Some of the most successful locations are community centers, libraries, community colleges, or universities. All of these places usually have a certain space you can book, and are usually under $150. Find a space that works best for you, and stick with it.  

 

3. Be Confident 

It’s okay to be nervous when it’s time to present. In fact, it’s normal. Even experienced speakers get nervous. But the important part is to not let it show. Be more confident than nervous. You’re a knowledgeable, smart financial professional who has a lot of important things to teach your attendees. Remember that. Use that. Speak with confidence, and your audience will respect you for it.  

 

4. Start on Time 

This one seems simple, but you’d be surprised how easy it is to lose track of time before the seminar. It’s important to stick to your word and start at the time you told your attendees you would. So, put on a watch or set an alarm or reminder on your phone to make sure you don’t start late. 

 

5. Send out Reminders  

Think about the last time you had a doctor’s appointment. They most likely called, texted, or emailed you a day or so before your appointment, right? Had you forgotten about it, or was it on your calendar? Either way, the reminder they sent you was a helpful way to make sure you showed up.  

The same is true with seminars. Sending a reminder email (or multiple emails) helps your registered attendees not forget about the seminar. Try sending an email a week out, three days out, and one day out to make sure that they see at least one of them.  

You should also send a follow-up email after the seminar. Thank them for coming and for their time, and then use the communication as an opportunity to ask them if they’d like to meet with you and get more information about what they heard. 

 

6. Utilize Social Media 

Sending out emails is a good start, but you should also be promoting your seminar on social media (here’s a good introduction on how to use social media for your business). You can create a Facebook ad, post on your social media pages, and even create a Facebook event to help get the word out and increase your attendee numbers. Don’t underestimate the power of social media. Today, people are filling seminars with only digital marketing, and you can, too.  

 

7. Answer Their Questions 

After your presentation is over, chances are your attendees are going to have some questions about what you just told them. Don’t be afraid of them. Allow time at the end for their questions, and let them know that you’re happy to answer anything. Questions are a good thing. That means your attendees are curious and interested in what you talked about, and, most importantly, they were paying attention.  

If there’s a question you can’t answer off the top of your head, get their contact information, let them know that you’ll follow up with them, and then send them the answer as soon as you can. 

 

8. Arrive Early and Stay Late 

As the host and presenter of the seminar, it’s your job to make sure it all goes smoothly, from start to finish. That’s why it’s important that you get to the venue early and stay late. Be the first person there and the last one, too. If you’re serious about getting new business from your seminar, then that means you need to be willing to go the extra mile and do everything possible to create the best seminar you can.  

If you’re serious about getting new business from your seminar, then that means you need to be willing to go the extra mile and do everything possible to create the best seminar you can.

Running a seminar doesn’t have to be hard. With these tips, you are well on your way to creating an engaging experience for your attendees. To help you even further, consider trying out our RWS Seminars program. This is a proven way to get better leads for less money and less effort. In fact, we use a targeted marketing approach, to get the right people in the room. And the best part is we do it in a cost-effective way, so it's not a burden on your budget. In fact, you could save up to half of the usual cost, compared to other popular seminar programs. Learn more about RWS Seminars and see if it’s available in your area.  

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Written By

Scott Wright

Chief Marketing Officer

Scott Wright is the Chief Marketing Officer of Brokers International. Scott has more than 25 years of experience in building equity and accelerating profit growth across multiple categories and brands, including Crest toothpaste, Pantene Pro-V, Old Spice, Valvoline and VISA. Scott and his team are focused on developing innovative marketing programs and tools that will deliver growth for our partner agencies and their financial professionals.

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