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Posted on Oct 20, 2011

10 Surefire Tips to Improve Your Next Franchise Convention

    1. Set objectives. Use your objectives in your planning, stay focused, and always control the message.
    2. Ask questions. What do I want attendees to do? What do I want my staff to do? What do I want vendors to do?
    3. Follow a disciplined creative development process. Keep an open mind to new or non-traditional ideas. Bring in fresh ideas, but use a structure when brainstorming. Match the medium to the message and remember: good graphic design matters.
    4. Promote early and often. Nothing else matters if they don’t come. Give them good (business) reasons to show up. Videotape your convention and start promoting next year’s convention immediately post-show.
    5. Presentation matters. Learn proper mic techniques and rehearse, rehearse, rehearse. Remember, brevity is a blessing—don’t recap. Choose the right guest speaker. And please—don’t read your PowerPoint.
    6. Go with the flow. Plan the rhythm of your show. Start with a strong first impression, choose the right breakout format, and build to a climax.
    7. Have fun with a purpose. Choose appropriate entertainment that will support your convention’s business objectives. Don’t let them forget the experience.
    8. Get it right the first time. In live production, there is no second take. Every presenter should have a tech rehearsal and the tools they need.
    9. Don’t skimp. Avoid the hotel A/V department. Go for quality sound, projection, and lighting. It doesn’t have to be extravagant; it does have to work.
    10. Manage your budget. Look for hidden costs in hotel, speaker, and entertainment contracts. Urge all your top suppliers to sponsor meals and other breakout sessions.

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