Conferences vs masterminds vs retreats: The most common events coaches use, and which one can work best for your community
Deciding which type of event to have for your coaching community is a roadblock many coaches get stuck on. They want to make sure the time they spend planning is worth their while. They want an event that is at full capacity with a waiting list; one where their clients are delighted to be at and where their offers are “flying off the shelves”. But which event to choose, and where to start?….
WARNING, NOT FOR NEWBIES!
If you have never planned a meetup, coffee gathering, or gaming session with your audience you need to stop here and check out my post “Plan Your First Coaching Event, with Amazing Results, in 10 Minutes or Less“. It is crucial that you at least have one event under your belt. One where you had the chance to engage with your community, learn what they are looking for, have fun, and gain that confidence as a host. Once you have done that, and have a better understanding of what your audience is looking for, then you can start planning your big event! If that is checked off your list, then let’s go.
Masterminds are to speed dating, as Conferences are to night clubs
I leave conferences for last because they definitely are the most complex of the three popular coaching events. You may ask, “But Joan, I can just book a ballroom, rent a projector, and have my conference”. NO you can’t. I mean you can, but we don’t do basic events that bore your audience around here. If you are going to do a conference you have to go into planning it as the best reflection of your brand. Otherwise this event can do the exact opposite of your goal. It can make you lose clients when they walk into your conference and see that your in-person experiences do not match your online experience.
Conferences are everything but the kitchen sink events. They can include speakers, breakouts, networking opportunities, vendor showcases, cocktail parties, and more. But the foundation of all conferences is to teach and sell. You stand in front of your audience and teach them more about your products or services. Then you sell them the tools to put everything you taught into practice.
To start planning a conference, I would start with the product or service you want to sell. Then work your way back into everything you need to put your audience in the perfect mental space to buy. If you get overwhelmed with the details and to-dos of planning, checkout this free checklist I created that walks you through all the practical things you will need to hold a successful conference.
No matter which type of event you choose, the most important thing is to consider your audience. If you are not providing value for them and moving them towards a transformation, then you are just throwing a party for party’s sake. Provide value, make it fun, and sell away!