Events are a great way for your company to connect to its target market and to raise its brand awareness. Apart from excellent speakers, what do you need for a successful event? A packed house, obviously!
If you are looking for ways to increase your event registration, this is the perfect article for you!
Influence and persuade to increase your event attendance
Dr. Robert Cialdini has spent his 30-year career researching the science of influence; his research earned him an international reputation as an expert in the fields of persuasion, compliance, and negotiation. Dr. Cialdini is the persuasion expert speaking at Brand Minds 2019 (learn more about him).
If you want to see him live, hurry up and catch the Early brand tickets.
Here’s how to use Dr. Cialdini’s principles of influence and persuasion to increase the number of your event registrations.
Influence Principle no 1 - Reciprocity
The principle of reciprocity states that if you give people something — a free sample, an invitation, a pleasant experience, useful information, etc. — they will feel obligated to give you something in return.
Here’s how to put this principle into action:
Offer them valuable information related to their interests: a white paper with the latest statistics of the industry or niche, or an e-book containing of experts’ round up on a particular subject. If what you offered them is of value to them, you will have increased chances of convincing your prospects to attend the event.
Influence Principle no 2 - Commitment and Consistency
The second principle of influence is consistency.
A consistent person is a person who is exhibiting behaviours, which reflect his/her words and promises. People like to be consistent because consistency builds a positive reputation and attracts trust. Consistency is about a person’s core values.
Also people are drawn to and value other people who are consistent.
Let’s say your company has shown public commitment to providing value to their customers. This event is one of your company’s ways of enriching their customers’ lives. Let your prospective attendees know how many events your company has run: this highlights your company’s consistency and builds trust.
Now that you have shown your company is committed and consistent, it’s time to influence your prospective attendees to do the same. Dr Cialdini says that people like to be consistent with the things they have previously said or done.
In the marketing and advertising campaign leading up to the event date, ask your prospective attendees questions about their pain points, problems or needs. Use the last question to ask them if they would attend an event, which would give them solutions to their problem. Now that the event is setup, send them a message saying You said you were willing to attend an event that could help you solve your problem. Well, here it is: register here! Because you showed interest in your customers’ needs and they expressed previous commitment, it’s highly likely they will be consistent and register to your event.
Influence Principle no 3 - Liking
The principle of liking can be used in various ways.
From a beautifully designed event page or website to posting pictures of your speakers smiling.
You can also flex your copywriting muscles and write conversational texts that speak the language of your prospects: don’t use industry slang, keep the words flowing with ease.
You can also help your prospects relate to your speakers and make them more likeable by adding personal details like their hobbies or interests.
Influence Principle no 4 - Scarcity
The principle of scarcity states that scarcity generates demand: when something is in short supply, we perceive it as more valuable thus fuelling our desire to have it.
How can you apply this principle to persuade people to register to your event? By showing a real-time counter of available seats to your event. Seeing that number going down is a great persuasion factor!
Influence Principle no 5 - Authority
Do you have recommendations from experts in your industry or niche? Have you received positive feedback or reviews from well-known specialists? Make sure to display any content that comes from authority voices: they contribute to your event’s reputation. Your prospects will trust you because they trust these authority figures.
Influence Principle no 6 - Social Proof
The social proof principle states that people will look to the actions of others to determine their own. Aristotle said Man is by nature a social animal: we are influenced by our environment and our friends. Statistics support this: 90% of consumers trust peer recommendations and only 33% trust ads (Nielsen).
How can you use the social proof principle to your advantage?
Show them a list of their friends who have already registered to your event.