Tactics for Building Profitable Events
The publisher also holds an annual, invitation-only Out 100 party, celebrating the people featured in its “Out 100” list in its December issue each year.
Still, there are pressures in coaxing potential attendees out of their offices to attend events.
“This is certainly true in the private and public sector,” says Cohen. “We have to give people a strong value proposition, which typically revolves around an education component that will help attendees do their jobs better, more quickly and more effectively.”
Offering a series of best practices seminars seems to work very well for 1105, which presents such seminars at many of its conferences as well as at FOSE, its yearly government-technology trade show.
“A government manager can … listen to others discuss pitfalls and successes on the job, and then go back with 10 takeaways regarding the road to success,” says Howell. “This is how branding and profits are built. It’s about generating a stellar reputation within your community through meaningful content.”
What Price is Right?
While content is an important determinant for attendees and sponsors, so is cost. Pricing an event too high can scare off potential registrants, while pricing it too low could suggest a lackluster affair and mean a poor return on investment.
Having said that, putting a price tag on events is completely determined by audience. Case in point, there is no cost for many attendees of 1105’s FOSE.
“Training dollars are extremely difficult to obtain in the federal government, so we simply will not charge government employees to attend,” says Howell. “The money would be coming out of their own pockets, and government employees aren’t exactly overpaid for their work.”
At the same time, Howell says certain educational events come with a fee. He said some executive events cost $2,000, and events catering to lower-paying positions might cost from $195 to $400.