Experienced seminar promoters know that the number of registrations that come in each day generally increases as the seminar draws closer. While you might receive only one registration per day four weeks before your seminar, you could see 20 registrations per day the last week before your event.

The reason for this trend, by and large, is prospects' procrastination. Like you, your prospective seminar attendees are busy. They might be interested in attending your event, but if there is no compelling reason to sign up in the moment, they will put your promotions aside (or print a copy of your web page) for later review. After all, they have fires to put out right now, and your seminar does not take place for weeks.

Here are three ways to overcome your prospects' natural tendency to put off making a decision about whether to attend your seminar:

  1. Use deadlines. The starting date of your seminar is a prime example of the motivational power provided by deadlines. As the seminar gets closer, registrations increase because prospects are finally getting around to reviewing your promotions and making a decision. And they finally sit down to review your materials because they know they have to. If they do not, they will miss your event, plain and simple.

    A common, proven way to use deadlines is to offer a tuition discount for early bird registrants. If you do not want to offer a discount, try offering one or more additional bonuses instead. For example, give early registrants a copy of your latest book or access to a monthly coaching group that you run.

  2. Increase the frequency of your communication around deadlines. Don't set a deadline and then forget to remind prospects about them. Remember, your prospects are busy. They probably are not writing notes in their calendars to jog their memory, so it is up to you to prod them into action.

    Increasing the frequency and quantity of your promotions right before a deadline raises awareness that something urgent is happening. As much as we like to think that our prospects eagerly read every word of every promotion, the reality is that most of our promotions end up unread in the trash. Sending a few more messages before a deadline increases the chances that prospects will read your messages ("Hmmm, why does Jenny keep emailing me. Maybe I should read this email...."). Each reminder also becomes an opportunity to give a prospect the final nudge he or she needs to take action.

  3. Make courtesy calls. I learned early in my seminar marketing career that some prospects are so busy that they will never get around to reviewing promotional materials. Courtesy calls can be an effective way to support these clients, who otherwise might miss important deadlines or perhaps miss your event altogether. If you are lucky enough to get your prospects on the phone, be prepared to take the registration.

Improving your marketing copy and making irresistible offers will increase the number of prospects who will sign up for your seminar right away. But a certain portion of your audience will always procrastinate. Use these three ideas to gently move them toward making the decision to register for your seminar.

Author's Bio: 

Jenny Hamby is a direct-response copywriter and Certified Guerrilla Marketer who helps consultants, speakers, and coaches to create Internet, advertising and direct-mail campaigns to boost revenue and generate qualified leads for their businesses. She is also author of How to Successfully Market Seminars and Workshops, a home-study course that shows professionals how to develop marketing plans and promotional materials to fill seminar seats. Claim your copy of her e-course, 31 Secrets to Jumpstart Your Seminar Promotions.