Newsletters, e-mails, phone calls and cards eventually will loose their effectiveness unless they are combined with client events. Client events allow for the establishment of a closer personal relationship. If done properly, these events can increase your sales from existing clients, help with client retention and increase referrals.
The key word here is “done properly”! To be successful in this part of the marketing process, a lot of pre-planning and hard work is needed. In order to increase participation the events have to be valuable or “fun” in the eyes of your clients. It’s hard to get 100% participation at such events, but the better the quality the more your participation will increase. If you don’t have the time or the expertise to plan such an event, consider hiring an “event planner”.
The following are various types of possible client events that have been successful.
- Educational events: In today’s economy most everyone is interested in what the future holds. A local economist can be a good draw and the exposure will also benefit him. Most topics in the financial industry will draw a good crowd.
- Charity Events: In the past I have taken clients to established charity events such as the St Vincent De Paul Breakfast. Many charities will co-sponsor an event with you; they are a big help in the planning and organizing of the event.
- Wine Tasting ( or food tasting) is also a fun event and it is possible to have a local wine shop or winery co-sponsor the event with you.Also, restaurants have participated in such events in order to get better known.
- Open house at your home: This is a more intimate setting and allows your clients to have an insight into your family life.
- Art Events: In my home town, Scottsdale Arizona, we have a lot of art galleries. They are often willing to host a private open house for your group, provide an insight to the “art market” and may even provide the refreshments.
- Holiday parties: This past Halloween I was invited to an adult costume party. It provided a fun way to meet a lot of people and it turned out to be one of the best parties of the year. I also, recently attended a “40’s” party in which we all had to be dressed in 40’s attire.
- Invite a Pro: Within your contact list, there more than likely are a lot of experts in a lot of different fields. Invite one of them to co-host your party and to be the main speaker, sharing his/her expertise.
Practice makes perfect and as you hold these events ( I recommend at least twice a year) you will find that your clients will be asking you when the next one will be and may they bring a guest.This is but one more tool for your marketing chest, and like most other tools, they only work when you use them.
Thought is useful when it motivates for action, and a hindrance when if substitutes for action
Make it a Successful Today!
Nick J. Petra