Fueling Your Business With Live Events with Tradeshow Bootcamp founder Katie Hunt

The Nitty Gritty:

  • Why live events are where it’s at
  • How the sales and promotion cycle of a live event is different than other sales cycles
  • Why it’s important to add to your team to allow you to focus on the tasks in your wheelhouse

We dig into the nitty-gritty details of live events in this week’s episode of the Profit. Power. Pursuit. podcast with my guest Katie Hunt, founder of Tradeshow Bootcamp, a business dedicated to educating and supporting creative entrepreneurs and small businesses. Katie also hosts the Proof to Product podcast. She takes a lot of pride in the events her team creates, and on that podcast she shares a lot of wisdom about what it takes to create events that offer attendees a great experience for learning and having fun, too!

Live Events are Where It’s At

Introverts of Profit. Power. Pursuit., go to live events. It’s completely worth it.

— Tara Gentile

What was to become the live event known as Paper Camp began in 2011 as a teleconference, and the first in-person Paper Camp Conference happened in 2012 once Katie knew there was a demand for this type of curriculum. Katie wanted to build a strong community where people were not just learning something, but they were connecting with others and building strong relationships. She knew that would be much more impactful at live events. Events are a really powerful tool, and although they aren’t right for everyone’s business model, they are hugely successful in helping Katie build the community that she sought to create.

Organization, Sales and Promotion of a Live Event

There’s a lot more that goes into their decision making {to attend an event} than ‘can I afford this and do I want to go.’

— Katie Hunt

Katie and her team work 6 to 8 months in advance to prepare for their next live event. She suggests if you’re doing a live event for the first time, send a survey to your audience to determine the best time of year for them to attend a live event. In the podcast, Katie walks through the steps her team takes to organize a live event, but keeping it simple and streamlined for her attendees and speakers is always paramount.

Since a live event is a higher-level program and higher expense for attendees, it’s important to start the sales and promotion process early since there is a schedule you have to maintain and people need the time to prepare to be away from their families and businesses. As soon as they close registration on one Paper Camp, they begin sales for the next one; however, there are promotional spikes in a three-month period where most of the sales happen. Through the course of the sales cycle, Katie and her team are nurturing their audience through case studies, alumni stories and more to help potential attendees see how their life would change if they attended the event and give them a taste of what they will learn, who they will be engaged with and to highlight the speakers they will interact with and learn from.

Event Teams

You can grow your team organically and in small batches.

— Katie Hunt

Katie has a small, but mighty team of virtual independent contractors, several who are Boot Camp alumni, that take care of the event details so Katie is free to work on the content and higher-level stuff that’s in her wheelhouse. Hiring people to do the work that needs to get done strengthened the content that is offered at the events.

I hope you listen to the entire episode to hear more about Katie’s team, how she manages cash flow when she has fairly large expenses to cover, why she believes in paying herself consistently and how she has turned some of her live events into online courses.

If you liked what you heard on this episode, I invite you to subscribe to the Profit. Power. Pursuit. podcast on iTunes today! Every week I talk to small business owners who share some of the secrets to their success as they build their businesses.

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