People are twice as likely to attend an event if they have registered and they are three times more likely to attend an event if they have paid for a ticket. Not to mention that having event registration helps your team with planning and communication with your attendees.
1. Get Your Invite Out Early
Sooner is always better than later when it comes to an invite. Remember that people get busy, especially if you have special guests or keynotes, you need to know the date and venue at least 3 weeks in advance. Plus once someone has committed to your event through a registration process, they are much less likely to cancel..
Often we delay sending out the invite as we don't have all of the details of the event locked down. The entire agenda is not mandatory or all of the special guests confirmed. What you do need is a venue, a date and the time. So prioritize this early!
2. Know Your Venue
The venue can dictate a lot of choices and options that are available to you. Some venues have preferred caterers, rental supply company, av equipment, and others are more flexible. Make sure you understand the restrictions upfront as this can add to your cost.
3. Customize Your Registration
You don't have to have your registration the same as everyone else's. You can customize it with questions to make sure that you are meeting or exceeding your attendees' expectations. What are they hoping to get out of this? What additional requirements do they have to ensure that this is a pleasant event for them (food, accessibility, other)?
4. Send Reminders!
Don't assume that people have this in their calendar and will not forget. Especially if you have followed the best practice of sending out the invite early on, they almost assuredly need some confirmation about details and a friendly reminder. It is almost not possible to over communicate! So send a reminder a week out and then another one the day before as a minimum.
5. Get Feedback
Nothing is perfect and there is always room for improvement. Find out what the attendees liked and what could be improved upon. Even if you aren't planning on running the same event, it is good to build the relationship with the attendees and to find out how to run the next event even better.