What To Do When Virtual Summit Attendees Ask For Special Treatment

summit attendees Jul 28, 2020

No matter how clear you make the details of your summit and the policies you have, you'll always have attendees asking for special treatment.

Today we'll cover the two most common places you'll have your policies questioned:

  1. The length of time attendees can access presentations for free
  2. All-access pass pricing

I'll share my thoughts on what these policies can look like, canned responses you can use, and mistakes you'll definitely want to avoid.

Special treatment is an important topic to consider

You plan your summit, and you set things up a certain way. You make the decisions you make for a reason.

Maybe you give access to presentations for free for 24 hours, because speakers can provide support for only a reasonable amount of time.

No matter how well thought out and how well-communicated your boundaries are, you will always have people who ask for special circumstances.

Major boundaries or policies to have in place

With that being said, it's helpful to decide how you'll handle requests for special treatment before it happens. The major areas you'll want to consider include:

  1. The Length of Free Access to Presentations: Your free ticket holders will gain access to your presentations for a set amount of time, usually 24 hours, while your All-Access Pass holders will have ongoing access. However, you'll likely have free ticket holders coming to you with various reasons for why they need an extended access. Create canned responses for how you'll respond so you don't have to worry about the questions as they come in.
  2. All-Access Pass Pricing and Discounts: Once someone registers for your summit, they'll have a nicely discounted offer for about 15-20 minutes (assuming you're using the strategies I teach, of course). After that, the price increases. Once your summit starts, the price increases again. Because of that, there will be people asking for discounts throughout your summit.

Map it all out and know your answer in advance!

A few common reasons attendees will ask for discounts or longer presentation access:

  • I wasn't going to buy your All-Access Pass, but changed my mind. Can I have the fast action price?
  • The price is higher now, but can I have the lower price from before?
  • I'm a student.
  • This is too expensive.
  • Do you have a coupon code?

Decide how you're going to handle each of these in advance.

If I give people discounts, whenever they ask for it, they'll come to expect that of not only me, but other business owners. They'll think that anytime they email a business owner asking for a discount that they're going to get it, which isn't a precedent I want to set.

Decide what the decision looks like for you and stick with it.

There can be exceptions

With that being said, even if you do go the route I take and don't offer extended access or discounts, there can be occasional and limited exceptions.

In the past, here are the types of things I've made exceptions for:

  • An attendee was hard of hearing and reading the captions for every video was exhausting to them in such a short amount of time.
  • Tech issues caused attendees to miss the fast-action price so they were given a coupon code.

Overall, I really try to avoid deciding whose situation "deserves" a discount and whose doesn't. It's too much pressure.

Because of that, I encourage you to stick to your policies you set in the beginning.

If you don't want to stick to those policies, you may want to just revisit your strategy and decide not to do price increases or extend your free access length. It doesn't look good for anyone to go back on what they said they were going to do.

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