Have you ever thought workshops would be a great event to add to your business?
They can be on any topic, social media, PR, building websites, sales or you could even run a workshop on running workshops! If you’re not sure where to start, here’s some advice on how I did it. Test out your content A couple of years ago I had signed up for a charity trip to Kenya and had to raise £3000. It was around the time that I moved so I put the fundraising off and left it to the very last minute. A social media workshop in exchange for a donation to my trip was an idea that came up as a way to fundraise, so I got to work preparing it. I’d actually already written a big chunk off the workshop and I was too nervous to show anyone but with Tom’s help we made the workshop look smart and most importantly, make sense! Presenting to my friends in my living room was a great way of testing out some of the content and seeing what questions they asked.
Find a venue Now that I had the confidence to run a workshop I needed a venue. I wanted somewhere with a screen that was relaxed and would hold around 8-10 people. I found a charity venue down the road which was affordable and for the first few events I donated a space to them and had the venue for free so there was no risk. They helped me spread the word and lots of us bought presents from their gift shop so everyone benefitted. Who is it for? Before you launch consider who you’re targeting and when you’re going to hold it. I knew that my target audience would be small businesses in Barry and they might possibly travel from Cardiff too so I had a clear radius of people to attract. I also knew that if they were shop owners most of them would be closed on a Monday and had more time then. After speaking to a friend who wanted to attend but would have to do it after the school run I decided to hold the events from 10-2pm so we can include lunch too. That has worked well for me so far and I haven’t needed to change it!
Decide on your price This is probably the hardest bit and I don’t think there is a right answer. I worked out what would be the lowest price I would be happy to do it for on an hourly rate and then looked at how many people could come. I settled on an affordable cost for small businesses that I would be happy to charge if only a few people turned up, but hoped that I would fill the room and get 8! As I didn’t know many people at that time, for me it was more about getting to know the local businesses and showing them how I could help them rather than making lots of profit. Start marketing Now you’re ready to start marketing! I did all the traditional forms of marketing like Facebook events and posting on groups, sharing on Instagram and on stories but for this event the most popular way to promote it was definitely through networking. We run Barry Business Club which is a relaxed networking event and started creating little flyers that we gave people when they came through the door. I think it really helped to meet me before the event and see what I’m like and how I speak before deciding to book a workshop.
Running social media workshops is one of the best things I did for my business and really got the ball rolling for other types of events and promotion. If you have an idea for an event then test it and go for it! It really can change your business.