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Conferences are the core of America. More than 125,000 Americans work as convention and meeting planners. They spend their days hiring speakers and mapping out how conferences will occur. 

Yet very few planners get a lot of conference attendees for their events. Before you pick a venue or hire speakers, you need to learn how to get more conference attendees. 

What content should you have at your conference? When should you send out invitations? What should you do during the conference to keep people in their seats?

Answer these questions and you can fill the rafters through basic steps. Here are six you can follow.

1. Tell a Story Through Your Content

You can tell a story in a few different ways. You can invite a noteworthy speaker and arrange a series of events around their life story. You can base your events around the host city, creating panels with local entrepreneurs. 

Get as creative as you want. But make sure that everything you do reflects the story. Don’t host a panel or a talk that has nothing to do with anything.

2. Adapt Your Content to Your Attendees’ Needs

Your attendees may come to your event for several reasons. They may want to learn about the industry and receive a little training. They may want to network or promote themselves. 

Give your attendees opportunities to fulfill their needs. Host a few events in small rooms that help your attendees develop their skills. Incorporate downtime into your schedule so they can network.

3. Invite Your Conference Attendees Early 

You can invite more attendees if you shift your invitation schedule up. Try sending out your first invites at least a few months before your conference. You can ask your guests to bring their friends and share your conference advertising.

4. Select a Great Location

You need to select a venue that accommodates all of your guests. Yet the venue should not be too big. Conference rooms should be accessible and the space itself should be exciting to look at. 

Incorporate the host city into your advertising. You can use photographs of the skyline in posters and social media ads. You can also invite the mayor and important politicians to speak in your conference promo videos.

5. Break People Into Small Groups

Take every opportunity you can to divide your attendees into groups. This gives them a chance to converse with each other and make friends. During speeches, your speakers can run games that require small groups.

6. Host a Follow-up

Learning how to host a conference means learning how to host a follow-up. You should give your guests something to do with the knowledge they learned in your conference. You can invite them to online seminars or in-person parties.

Attract Throngs of Conference Attendees

You can get conference attendees through your door. The key is to make conference content that is consistent and clear. Base everything around a story and host panels that inform your audience.

Leverage your guests. Send out your invitations early and ask them to invite others. You should also push your host city in your ads. 

During your conference, keep attendees together in small groups. When everything is done, send out thank-yous and invite them to a follow-up.

Keep learning about great event planning strategies. Read more event planning guides by following our coverage.

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