049: Booking Out Your Services With A Virtual Summit

Jan 23, 2020

Did you know a summit is a great way to book out your services? My custom development services have gotten booked out 6-months in advance after each of my summits and it's possible for you too.

In this episode we'll cover how promoting services after a summit is different than products, the main thing to focus on in your early summit planning, and my simple strategy for booking out my services once the summit is over.

Transcript

Hey, Hey, welcome to the Summit Host Hangout podcast where you'll learn how to plan, strategize, and launch your profitable online summit, no influencer status necessary. I'm your host, Krista from Summit In A Box, and we're currently in a series about increasing profits once your summit is over. Today in episode 49 we're breaking that down to chat about booking out your services through your summit.

We're going to cover how selling services after a summit is different from products, important things to keep in mind in the early stages of your summit planning if selling services is your goal, the simple strategy I've used to book out my services six months in advance following both of my summits and my retainer services indefinitely, and then monetizing beyond your services.

how selling services after a summit is different from products

Let's start by talking about how selling services after a summit is different from products. When it comes to profiting post summit, I feel like product based business owners have it easy and I'm going to say like relatively easy. Of course it's not easy, but when compared to selling services, it's a little bit easier because these product based business owners have this new list. They can do a launch just like they've done a hundred times before and see big profits. There's no limits. People are going to be more likely to be ready to dive into their offer.

But for services that tends to be a little bit different and while it's totally possible to do a launch of your services, and I've done it before, depending on your offer, it might not work as well. For example, I offer WordPress development services for designers, and I can launch those services to my audience all day long. But if those designers don't currently have a client project lined up that they need a developer for, my pitch is not going to matter to them because they literally don't need the service even if they might want it.

I know that's a problem that comes in often with different types of service based offerings. Another way, selling services after a summit tends to be different from products is that usually you can sell an unlimited number of products, but with services we can only book so many clients, and we're going to talk about a solution to that near the end of this episode. It's something to keep in mind there.

what you need to keep in mind during the early stages of your summit planning

But before I get into any specific strategies, I want to talk about what you need to keep in mind during the early stages of your summit planning because you are only going to book out your services after a summit if your summit was positioned correctly and to the right audience. If the goal of your summit has nothing to do with the goal of your services, things just are not going to convert well. Please keep that in mind during your planning.

Consider what topic your summit can cover that also relates to your services and then think about what presentation you can give during your own summit that relates to them even more. To use myself as an example, my services are WordPress development for designers. I do custom services and I have retainer clients. Designers hire me to basically free up their time for other projects. They get rid of development, which is a part of the project they don't enjoy and they're able to give their clients better results and higher quality websites. So that's why they hire me. Based on that, my summit topic is simplifying a design business because that's exactly what they want was a stress free way to work with a developer because you know a complaint a lot of designers have that it's too stressful to find a developer. It's hard to get them to follow through with their work.

I was able to really capitalize on their biggest pain points of working with the developer and solve them. In my presentation, I also offered an encore presentation in my Facebook group that people were asking for about offering retainer services. And now this worked really well for me because I was positioning the presentation as you know, here's how you can offer retainer services. But throughout they were getting a like behind the scenes look at exactly how my retainers were offered. They were able to see some really great feedback I was getting from my clients, and that actually ended up converting really well even if that wasn't the ultimate goal. So it's definitely a great strategy to employ if you can. Assuming you've got all that, you have a topic that relates to your services, you've got a great presentation picked out, I want to talk about what the strategy then can look like.

A big part of this is that you need to be front and center during your summit so everyone knows who you are. This is another little piece to keep in mind in the beginning. We want these attendees to think of you when they need your service, not somebody else. And they're also going to know who to refer other people to who need your service. Please make sure you are front and center in your summit. It's not one of those summits where someone goes to the registration page and can't even tell who the host is. Then, you know, showing up through video and like your kickoff call, on your registration page, all those places will just make that even more powerful. But as for what to do after this feminist over, there are two options and we're going to start with what I do and it's very laid back, but it has clearly worked pretty darn well.

the simple strategy I've used to book out my services six months in advance

After my summit is over and I'm done telling me All-Access Pass, I'll send an email to all my new subscribers, letting them know what to expect moving forward, which for them is, you know, you're going to get biweekly emails from me. I'll be talking about working with a developer and simplifying your design business. And then I also let them know my current availability for my services. For the next at least two months, I craft my blog posts and newsletter content to be really related to my services. Everything for me is related to working with the developer in one way or another while providing value. I'm focused much more on the value than pitching. But each time I send this content or put out this content, they're thinking about the option of working with me even more. And for me, that's been all it's taken for me to book out their services.

I've been extremely visible, which means I'm in front of a whole lot more people that need my services hosting a value packed event where they're pumped up afterwards and trust you for all of the incredible help you've already given them without even necessarily paying you. Because of that, my custom work has been booked out six months in advance ever since. My retainer work has been completely booked out and I don't know when that won't be booked out anymore, which is incredible. So that's one option. And even if you want to do something more like official than that, I still recommend employing all of these tactics inside of that more official, I'm saying an air quotes plan.

That other option is to send a specific email sequence. Craft an email sequence to pitch your services just like you would if you were selling a product. So many people feel like you can't do that for services, that you can't launch a service, but you totally can. You can offer some kind of bonus. I wouldn't necessarily do a discount, but add like a bonus inside of your package so it's a time sensitive offer or just really capitalize on the fact that you only have a specific number of openings, but focus on the benefits of your service in that email sequence. Mix in some value add emails, lots of testimonials and this can definitely work depending on what your specific offer is and if something like that feels good to you, it's worth trying so make sure people know who you are, what you do, that they've learned a ton about the kinds of things you can offer them and how that would benefit them and then use that to make your plan for how to convert them after the summit's over.

Something else I want to talk about here is the fact that you can also monetize beyond your services. Since most of us offering one on one work have very limited availability, I wanted to throw this part in because you can monetize more than just your services and this is especially beneficial for those of you who offer like really high touch or even high priced services that want to get sales from other people as well. And for this, I really recommend creating a super simple offer that you can put together easily and then pitch. But again, this has to be really related to your summit.

For me it would be like a live workshop series and this is something I actually planned out for my last summit and then I just honestly didn't feel like doing it, so I didn't. But for me, I chose a live workshop because it's not a ton of work up front. You really just have to outline the content and then you can deliver it live. And live trainings also have more perceived value than like prerecorded trainings or workbooks or something like that. It was easier and had a higher perceived value. It just felt like a great fit for me. And then again personally, I would do a series over like a single workshop just because of the increased perceived value.

If you want to do something like this, you just hosted a great event that will help you decide exactly what topics to cover. So you're going to choose your workshop topics based on what people say they still need help with once the summit is over, which is a question you can include in your feedback survey or even just ask or pay attention to your Facebook group for what people are asking for help on. You're going to choose the biggest topics that you can help with the most and craft that live workshop or a series of live workshops based on those topics and you have something really easy to launch to these new subscribers.

It's a great way to just monetize beyond your services. So so many people think that summits are just for product based business owners. But in my experience that couldn't be further from the truth because I run a service based business and that's where I launch my summits. There is a huge potential to increase your visibility and that paired with helping people solve the problem that your services are related to means a whole lot of people who can now hire you themselves or give you a great referral.

Action Steps

My action steps for you for this episode are to focus on that summit topic. That's what I want you to focus on first. Make sure that topic relates to your services and that you can also give a great presentation related to your services, but thank you so much for tuning in to this episode. I hope this helped inspire those of you who have a service based business to dream bigger with your summit.

Your summit isn't the only way you're going to profit. You have a lot of potential to book out those services as well. In the next episode we'll be chatting with a guest about launching a membership through a summit, so be sure to tune in for that.

Like with anything, planning and hosting an online summit is a whole lot more fun when you're surrounded by other people who get it. For a community of other summit hosts who can be alongside you to celebrate wins, share advice about crafting a topic that relates to your services and offer support, join us inside the free Summit Host Hangout Facebook group, and you can join that over summithosthangout.com/community, and I can't wait to see you inside.

Now go out and take action to plan, strategize, and launch your profitable online summit.

 

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