Irresitable Registration

How do you make your genealogy classes, workshop or other event irrestistable to potential participants?

There is apparently more to getting genealogy students to enroll than simply getting a great teacher or speaker. I have been thinking about this as I discuss the challenges with those involved in my speaking tour of British Columbia. So I went looking for some clues in how facilitate the genealogist’s committment to participate in a genealogfy educational event. Here’s what I learned: In a paper by Dr. Ralph D. Elliott entitled “How to Create Irresistable Registration Offers” he makes the following suggestions:

  • Give the genealogist registration and payment options. Elliott suggests registration by telephone, on-line, by mail and at the door, accepting cash, check, credit card etc.
  • Spell out in the promtional literature what the genealogist will receive after enrolling in the genealogy event but before the actual event. Possibly a questionaire to help instructor understand individual background or needs. Perhaps a relevant article on the topic to read before the event. A list of who else is attending is another possibility. And a reminder email a week before the event of the place and time. We need to continue to “sell” after we have sold the registration.
  • Remove or reduce substantially cancellation charges.
  • Offer a money-back guarantee and build credibility with prospective clients
  • Offer a discount for early registration and for group registration. This means advertising must start early.
  • Offer a member discount, or bundle the registration fee with a Society Membership at a discount.
  • Offer a special price for parts of the event. For example, If the day includes two lectures in the morning and an afternoon workshop, offer a discount for those who only attend either morning or afternoon.
  • Limit enrollment to encourage early registration. Two of the events on my tour are discussion format workshops limited to 19 people for a roundtable discussion. The limited enrollment is a feature. If you were attracted to this, you’d be upset to find 75 or 100 people attending. Make the limited part meaningful.
  • Make the registrant feel very comfortable by making the experience more personable.”Call Suzanne at 800-555-1212″ is more inviting than “call the Skookum Valley Genealogy Society at 800-555-1212” Having a name to contact can ease things if registrants need to follow up for some reason.

I’ve simplified immensely some of Dr. Elliott’s ideas. You can read the whole article yourself at this link at Clemson University


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