Many of us often forget that annual meetings and conferences are actually a business. When we are a member of an organization, we expect the organization to provide an annual meeting at the lowest cost possible so we can attend. But are those member expectations justified? It really depends upon the business model of the event. Defining A Business Model A business model describes the rationale for how an organization creates, captures and delivers value. It emphasizes a system-level, holistic … [Read more...]
When Conferences Go Awry
Most nonprofit organizations host some type of annual meeting every year. Generally their bylaws require that they hold at least one annual membership meeting. Similarly, many corporations and associations organize, plan and implement one or more conferences every year that have other goals beyond the annual membership meeting. Some corporations hold customer events to showcase new products and services or increase loyalty. Often when these annual meetings and conferences first start, … [Read more...]
Are You Attracting The Right Customer For Your Conference?
Who are the customers for your conference? Yes, I said customers - plural. You have more than one customer. Most of us think of our conference customers as the paid registrants. Instead, we need to think of our customers as anyone who can say no. Who's Your Daddy Customer? So who are the customers of your conference? Paid registrants? Yes. Exhibitors? Yes, especially if you offer a tradeshow. Sponsors? Yes. Others? Probably. Each of these customer segments has different needs, wants and pain … [Read more...]
Identifying Conference Targets Of Opportunity For Growth
Often "it" occurs after several years of success. Your conference attendance, exhibitors and revenues reach a plateau. Or they start to decline. Why does "it" haunt and hunt your once-successful conference? You have never learned how to acquire new business. Or you've depended on repeat business. Or you've expected new registrants to arrive at your conference website waving cash in the air. There comes a time in every conference's history when there is a need to pursue new business and … [Read more...]
The Conference Life Cycle: Where Is Your Event In This Process?
All associations, businesses and professions must continually adapt in order to survive. Organizations, products and services go through a four stage life cycle: startup, growth, maturity and decline. Unless the organization reinvents itself, it declines and ceases to exist. The business life cycle also applies to conferences, meetings and events. Where do you think your conference is in this life cycle? The Product Life Cycle History Theodore Levitt originally developed the idea of a … [Read more...]