In this episode, Liz Wilcox is taking us behind the scenes of what it has been like to host 3 summits alongside 3 co-hosts.
We're talking about everything from how the event and offer have evolved over the years to how to help an audience not familiar with online summits understand how it all works.
I'll let Liz take it from here!
I started my website about three years ago and wanted to run a blog as my business. About six months in, I wrote a book called “Tales from the Black Tank: A Collection of Hilariously Crappy RV Stories”. And if you're not familiar with RVing, the black tank is where the sewage goes. It's just a collection of funny stories about our RVing.
I had a small email list that I sold to, and about 25% of them bought the book. I couldn't believe it. This really lit a fire in me. I went back to my mastermind of other RVing ladies and said we’re going to put on a summit all about RVing. We planned and implemented that first summit in 3 weeks. Everything fell into place.
The first year we sold a bundle of products, and the summit was a platform to sell that bundle. We didn’t really know what we’re doing, but it worked well. We made 43 sales at $100 and split that evenly with anyone who participated that year.
The next year we restructured it. We didn’t have this bundle of products anymore, but we had the idea to sell the previous year’s videos and to create a coupon book. RVers love to save money so I knew it was the right topic. This coupon book featured all the speakers and gave a discount on any products or courses they had. We sold it for $47 and did really well with that.
In the third year, we did a bit differently. We did pricing tiers and no coupon book. My partners didn’t want to go through the hassle of the coupon book and decided on pricing tiers instead. I just went with it, trusted they made a great decision. We were able to sell double the amount of tickets we had sold the previous year. They were right, I was wrong.
They taught me what true value is and how to value yourself as a business and what you’re offering.
We did a hybrid event this year called Full-Time Freedom Week. We had a live, in-person event, with a virtual option as well. The tables really turned. I was reluctant at first but remembered how my cohosts had put their trust in me in the beginning so I needed to trust them now that this in-person aspect was going to work.
It ended up being fun and cool to meet some of the people that had been watching out summits for 2 years. It was amazing to hear the stories and see the faces of those we had impacted. We had 50 or so in-person and thousands online.
You can consume all the resources out there, but you never know what it's going to be like until you get started. You go in with the mindset that I'm going to come across some barriers and when I do, I'm just going to keep going. We’re proof that it works and that you can work around any barrier.
RVers know what a blog or YouTube is. They’re used to that, but they don’t know what a virtual summit is. They’re not too savvy on this business-to-consumer situation, but I think the name of our summit really helped. We called it Full Time Freedom Week, and when people hear the word “week” at the end, they think of an event – like Shark Week.
On our registration page, we called it a virtual event you can watch from your computer 100% online because that’s a pain point for some of our attendees. Put that language right there on your landing page but think about what your audience knows and relates to. Our audience knows rallies, so we positioned it as an online rally. We said they don’t have to leave their dinette because the dinette in an RV is where the attendees would be watching from.
Think about what your audience knows about events and translate that into your website wording.
We've had our ups and downs, but what makes us work is that we WANT it to work. We're not afraid of conflict. We’re also not afraid to take full ownership.
We’re so good at individual things and it kind of meshes well, but we all take ownership. Every year it’s us proving to each other that we can do this and can make money online.
We tell our speakers it’s an event built on collaboration, not competition. We want you to succeed as much as we want ourselves to succeed.
Just do it! And then do it again and again. If you have someone to work with that you can trust, do it, because it’s a huge thing to do on your own.
Liz Wilcox runs an RV-centric digital summit with 3 other genius bloggers. Just wrapping up its 3rd year, they've tried just about every strategy out there when it comes to online conferences. Including turning it into an actual IRL event.
Learn how much time to set aside for planning and launching your profitable, stress-free online summit and use my calculator to set the due dates for you.