One of the questions I frequently get asked is how you prevent guests from not turning up to your event, or 'no shows' as we call them in the industry.
If you've ever planned an event, no matter how big or small, delegate no shows can be a problem. Often you've had to confirm final numbers with your venue and catering in advance then come to the day of the event the number of people you were expecting, and paying for, don't attend.
So how do you stop your attendees from 'no showing'?
I find communication to be the key.
Keep in touch with your attendees from the moment they register right up until the day, or even morning, before your event.
At a halfway point between the start of your event receiving registrations to the date of the event send a quick email to those who have registered to remind them about the event and that they've registered. Tell them you look forward to seeing them and direct them your events web page or social media channels to encourage interaction prior to your event.
Include in your reminder email vCalendar or iCalendar files with the details of the event in them so people can automatically save the date in their online diaries.
One week before your event send out a final email. This email serves to confirm their attendance, provide the final details of the event such as venue and start times. This should prompt any one to cancel their attendance if they unfortunately need to.
The day before your event or the morning before if your event is in the evening call all your attendees as a courtesy to check they received your joining details email and have all the details.
Over to you now. Next event that you host do all of the above and I guarentee that your rate of 'no shows' will be less than if you don't. If you don't have the time to do them all then at least do the ring round. Not only will it remind them of the event its a great personal touch which is so important for face-to-face events.
If you have any other thoughts about reducing your 'no show' rate I would love to hear about them. Share them in the comments below.