seminar location

To fill up the room, you’ve got to make it easy for prospects to attend which means the time of day, the seminar location and the distance that they have to travel have to be convenient for them. In other words, your seminar logistics must fit your prospects. Let’s first consider seminar location and distance.

Distance is the perceived distance. In a major metropolitan areas, people will generally not drive more than 20 minutes to come to a seminar. Twenty minutes in a big city could be three miles just because of the traffic. So you have to think about not what the actual distance is but how is it perceived. That’s really the big issue when selecting the seminar location and planning your seminar logistics. I have people that live 12 minutes away from me by car down a major interstate freeway. However, those people that are 12 minutes away are on the other side of the tunnel and they are in the next county. And even though they are only 12 minutes away, I can never get them to a seminar in my county, because in their mind, it seems far away. So perceived distance is the issue when selecting seminar location.

How far people will actually drive and consider it to be close or far is a local issue. If you are out in the country, in a rural area, and people drive 30 minutes to go to the supermarket, then you can probably invite them to a seminar location 30 to 40 minutes away and you will fill the room. Invite people in a metropolitan area to drive 30 or 40 minutes; forget it. It’s never going to work. So you must know what people consider close and what people consider far when selecting your seminar location. Therefore, distance logistics are a function of your local area.

Let’s talk about types of seminar locations. If you come from the insurance business, you were probably taught to go sell life insurance policies at the kitchen table. The reason you were taught this is because the kitchen is the favorite room in the house. It’s the favorite room in the house because the favorite activity of Americans is eating and that’s where you do that…in the kitchen. So it’s a room they like. Plus, it has all these favorable connotations…it’s about holiday and family, all that warm, fuzzy American lifestyle stuff happens in the kitchen. So it’s a really good place for people to generally feel good. What’s the closest seminar location you can use outside of their house that looks like their kitchen? It’s a restaurant, because food is served there.

Hopefully, you pick a restaurant that they’ve been to before. So don’t pick a new restaurant in town. Don’t pick an obscure restaurant. For your seminar location, pick the restaurant that’s on Main and Broadway, the one that’s been there for 30 years. Why? Because people will more likely come to a place that’s familiar than unfamiliar…it’s just human nature. When they look at your invitation, they say….where’s this at? Oh, it’s over at the Cape Cod House…great!. That’s the reaction you want to get. If they have never heard of your seminar location, you run the risk of them not coming just because they haven’t heard of it, don’t know where it is, and people don’t want to make an effort. They don’t want to look at a map. They don’t want to find out.

You may need to drive around some and look for the right seminar location. Optimally, it will be right in the middle of your prospecting area. If you can’t think of a good seminar location, call the local Chamber of Commerce, tell them you are doing a seminar and ask them which restaurants or seminar locations they recommend.

Be careful of seminar locations that are high-end or low-end. If people perceive the location is low-end, they can likely infer something about the seminar. For example, if you use a school or a library….an adult school, community college…something like that, then the richer guy that’s an experienced investor will infer that the seminar is too basic. He’s the guy that you want to come because he’s got all that money but you can’t even get him to walk in the door. He looks at the invitation, “Where’s this at?…oh, it’s at the library. They’re going to be talking about what…mutual funds 101? I’ve invested in funds for 30 years, I won’t learn anything there.” So he assumes just from the seminar location that your conversation is so low-level there’s nothing he can get out of it.

Same thing with a high-end seminar location. You hold it at the country club…and the guy who gets your invitation is a retired plumber. He’s got a $3 million net worth, but it’s all in CDs because he doesn’t know anything about investing money. He gets your invitation. He thinks maybe I should go to this and learn something about this. And then he sees…where is it? It’s at the country club. I’ve got to get all dressed up. I can’t wear my coveralls there. You intimidate him with your seminar location so don’t pick a location that’s too high-end.

The person you are looking to attend is the “Millionaire Next Door” as described in Tom Stanley’s book. He’s approaching age 60 or he’s a little over. He owns or has owned his own business. He has a $3.7 million net worth. That’s the guy. Then if you invite him to the country club, some of them are going to be intimidated and they just won’t feel comfortable there and they won’t come. Just as others will feel that the library is a “junior league” seminar location. A well-known restaurant is a neutral location that everybody will feel comfortable coming to. The next question is—do you serve food?

Seminar Video Tutorial

Seminar Logistics – Time and Day

Seminar Logistics – Meals