Are your events suffering a drop in attendance because members can’t get funding approval to pay for the conference or the travel or both?
In our discussions with membership organizations we’ve found that this has been an issue for several years. Even though membership numbers are recovering from their depths, conferences are still feeling the pinch because many employer budgets are still in the deep freeze when it comes to travel and continuing education.
And the problem is that you’re relying on your members to be sufficiently tenacious and brilliant at sales to convince their managers to loosen the purse strings.
Why not make it easy for them?
Here’s an idea from the Canadian Payroll Association. So simple and so brilliant. In the conference section of their website they have a menu item “Getting Approval to Attend”.
The page is entitled “Getting Approval from Your Manager to Attend the CPA’s Conference and Trade Show”. Here’s the URL:
The content covers all the bases:

  • Why You Should Attend
  • Top benefits of Attendance
  • Ideas on How to Overcome Objections to Your Request
    • This conference is too expensive
    • What will the organization gain from your attendance?
    • The organization cannot afford to have you away from the office
    • How to Create a Successful Proposal

And finally it includes a sample memo that the member can alter to suit. See the link at the bottom of the page.
Events are one of the five pillars of the Sustainability Model for membership organizations.