Episode 163: Should Events Be Part Of Your Business Offering? – with April Beach and Jenn Murray
This episode is for those in Phase 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5 of the Lifestyle Entrepreneur Roadmap™ Not sure what Phase your business is in?
Who This Episode is Great For:
Entrepreneurs who are intimidated by the idea of hosting events
Entrepreneurs who are considering offering events
Entrepreneurs who have never considered hosting events before
Those ready to scale with an established business
Four event-hosting myths and a breakdown of the truth
How much notice you should give your audience about your events so they have time to plan
The two things I was nervous to do during my own events that really paid off
About the Guest:
Jenn Murray is an Event Planner who helps online entrepreneurs plan in-person events(such as workshops, retreats, masterminds, and conferences) that meet their business goals and cultivate long-term relationships. Her clients range from entrepreneurs who are just branching out into events to those with 6-figure businesses.
Entrepreneurs come to Jenn wanting to: take their event from idea to reality; cultivate authentic, vital connections with their attendees; execute an event that’s aligned with their unique brand and messaging; and add events to their long-term business model in a profitable way.
Take Action with Episode Bonuses:
Download Jenn’s FREE PDF | This Super Secret Hack Will Greatly Simplify Your Event Planning Process (Scroll to the bottom of the page.)
you’re listening to the sweet life entrepreneur podcast Simplified strategies to grow your service business and launch a life you love faster with business, mental and entrepreneur activator a probe Age Hey, guys, Thanks for being here and tuning into the show. I’m April Beach and I’m glad to be talking to you today we are at episode number 163 and you are listening to the Sweet Life Entrepreneur A podcast now, also on Pandora. I always forget to announce that to you guys. I’m super excited that we’re part of the Pandora family of podcast.
We’ve actually been there for at least six months. And, um, I want to make sure that, you know, if you’re a Pandora listener, you can also catch the show on Pandora. Today we’re driving into talking about events to connect deeper with your audience in to grow your business. But before we do that, let me go ahead and take care of a few little reminders that actually make me so excited to Dio. The first thing is I want to give a shout out to our listener of the week,
Laurie Evans, wherever you are. Thank you. So much for leaving this review on Apple. And this is what Laurie says about this show. It’s just what I was looking for. I’m a long time podcast listener, but honestly, a little burned out. A metal new level in my business, in the usual podcasts are not cutting it. I’ve been on the search for podcast that actually bring value and push me to step it up to the next level. The sweet life entrepreneur podcast, is it?
I’m obsessed. So, Laurie, wherever you are, thank you so much for being a listener. Thank you for your review. I would love to promote your business and so hit me up on Instagram over at sweet Life. Entrepreneur, send me a message and just say, Hey, Abra, I’m Laurie. And, um, we’ll make sure to share your business out with our followers. Okay, Next item of quote unquote actual business, which is exciting, is sweet. Life launches open. Sweet life Launch is my signature business launch development and mentorship program.
And it is a place for you to be if you are ready to stop guessing and to know exactly what to do, tow, launch and grow your business with support access to my business, launch training’s courses, programs and private coaching and feedback on your work every single month directly from me. Sweet left launches only open a couple of times a year. So if you are ready for this level of business launch planning, support, training and commitment, now’s the time to join in there because it’s closing in the next.
See, you’re looking at my calendar right now. You guys have about six more days to join Sweet Life Launch. If you’re listening to this riel time, you conclude cruise over to sweet life launch dot com and make sure that you get in there. All right. Today’s episode is for those of you guys who are intimidated about the idea of hosting events. You have considered events in the past but don’t really know how they fit into your business. And today show is also for you guys who are in phase 34 or five of my lifestyle Entrepreneur Road map.
My lifestyle Entrepreneur Road map gives you the five phases to design, launch and scale your business for lifestyle freedom. If you don’t know where you are, you can find a short assessment within the show notes of this episode, along with all of the other links that we’re gonna mention in this episode simply by visiting suite life. Podcast dot com forward slash 163 Okay, before we jump into the show, I want to share a really quick little story with you. If you’re hesitant to host events in your business,
you are not alone. Before I hosted my first events, I was super nervous. He wise. I’m not, naturally an event planner and not a cook. I don’t think of the order ves And you know I’m not somebody who naturally gets really excited about, like the goody bags and those things. It’s just not me. Before I hosted my first event, I was really nervous that people would regret being there now. Granted, I did everything, and I got help to make sure that any expectations we’re not only met that we went over the top in this first event,
but I was still still super scared because that is not my gifting. But I stepped out on the limb and did it anyway, and I want you to know that this is what happened. Instead of people saying Oh, you know, maybe something here might be a little missing or this isn’t what we expected. People thanked me. They think me for giving them an opportunity to work with me in person for giving them an opportunity to connect with other women who they can develop really deep relationships with. So they don’t feel alone and they can support each other.
And I even had people bring me gifts and son me. Thank you, cards. So it is totally different than what I thought it was gonna be. I was super nervous that people were gonna be sad or disappointed that, you know, they bought a plane ticket to fly to my event, and instead they were so grateful. But they were grateful because it was such a raw, authentic opportunity for them to grow their business and grow personally at the same time. That’s what events do. And that’s what we’re talking about on today’s show.
So let me go ahead and give a quick intro to our special guests. Today, Jen Murray is an event planner who helps online entrepreneurs plan in person events such as workshops, retreats, masterminds and conferences that meet their business goals. and cultivate long term relationships. Her clients range from entrepreneurs were just branching out into events and those with six plus figure businesses. So I’m happy to have Jen on the show today. All right, you guys, welcome back to another episode, and Jen is here to help us and help you realize that you might be listening to some lies.
You might be talking yourself out of doing retreats. And with that being said, you might also have this feeling deep inside of you that you want to connect with your community. And so today on the show, we’re talking about four different myths about retreats so that you can really push through them and decide if you should be connecting with your audience in your community a little bit more deeply. Jen is the founder of Relate Escape, and Jen welcomes to the show. I’m so glad you’re here. Thank you so much.
I’m so glad to be here. Very, very honored. Thank you, April. Oh, you’re so sweet. Thank you. So talk to us a little bit before we dive in. Like, how did you get into this? What are you doing? And why are you doing it. And how do you help online entrepreneurs? So I’m an event planner That specifically helps online entrepreneurs. So I helped them plan any kind of client focused event. So retreats, mastermind, workshops, conferences. It’s something that I kind of just fell into,
you know, is my journey as an entrepreneur started going and I was like, I’m not meant for 9 to 5. I need to be an entrepreneur. So what does that business gonna look like? And my original idea for relate Escape was actually based around my home city of Pittsburgh, and it was helping people have custom itineraries when they would visit the city, because we’re kind of becoming more known, a notable even across the ocean overseas.
I didn’t do any market research. I didn’t validate my idea. My take home was with the county that Pittsburgh is located inside you old.
We had all these accolades coming, and I was like, Why don’t you do market research? You know,
I didn’t listen to anybody and used to say it didn’t really go anywhere partly because of that, and partly because after I sort of started the idea,
I had a couple months of personal issues, and so I had to step away from it. But when I came back to it,
I was like, OK, I really need to be an actual business, right? I need to be making money.
I wanted to get out of my horrible day, child. So I took a course that actually taught you how to create premium packages.
And part of that process was doing market research. Right, Because you have to understand what you’re quiet once.
Hello on It finally made me do the research I should have done in the first place, and I went into it thinking that Okay,
I’ll just pray for your packages that are geared towards businesses to want to do, like team building exercises in the city or have some kind of like corporate event in the city,
like just gonna aim at businesses because then you couldn’t have the higher price tag right? But when I started having these phone conversations with entrepreneurs,
some of them who came from corporate backgrounds, even I stumbled upon this desire in its need for wanting to do in person retreats.
Because there’s an understanding of online as much as we have. It’s limiting and there’s a lot of March more.
Is that really want to be face to face with their clients or potential clients, not just to sell,
but to understand their current clients better and to have those things like organic conversations and really dig deep with them and find out What do you really need?
Am I serving you like what else can I do? But there’s kind of a void out there right now as far as teaching people how to do it or service is to help them plan,
because our needs are a bit different than safe. You’re doing like a corporate party. Or if you’re doing like a wedding or graduation party like we have certain challenges and our lifestyles different,
we also need to make money. So I was like, Oh, this is just, like, so interesting and a judge with still what I wanted to do because I’m very about cultivating relationships and strategy and being creative,
and so I picked in my business and so related skate went from being something that was based around by my city that I live in to just really hoping to fill this gap.
This major gap in helping entrepreneurs get past the desire. Bring those events into reality. I love that I love the whole story and you’re you’re right in the right spot at the right time.
It makes perfect sense. We’ve been talking a lot actually for last couple of years on this show about how we love online business so much.
But we’re really missing that face to face and that that really those relationships are the key. And so I know a lot of entrepreneurs are listening to this and they’re saying,
Okay, I want to do events but I still don’t think that there for me or how do we know whether or not there for me?
And they have fears around it, because when you walk through the process of planning an event, it’s almost like if you build it,
will they come and a lot of them are afraid to do that. So today on the show, you’re gonna walk us through four different event myths debunked,
and I’m excited about this because I really think those guys are listening. If you’re saying, Hey, listen,
I really want to connect with my community, I might not have that great of a list I might not have ever hosted an event before.
How do I provide an experience? You’re gonna learn a ton from this. And I think of the end of this episode you’re gonna have a lot of confidence as to whether or not you guys believe that hosting an event should be something on your 2020 it and beyond agenda.
So let’s kind of talk about the 1st 1 here. What is the first myth that you have come across when you talk Thio online entrepreneurs about events There’s kind of a myth that they have to do.
Ah ha little cookie cutter kind of event. So a lot of events that you see people talking about online are at,
like, five star resorts or there are like a mountain retreat, and none of those are bad. I mean,
if that works for your brand and you have the ability to pay for that kind of event, that’s perfectly fine.
But I feel like that’s kind of the only example that we’re seeing right now on purpose, because a lot of entrepreneurs have yet to do events.
So we’re just kind of seeing kind of like one example of what could be done. So I just want to make it clear that you don’t have to have what I call cookie cutter event everything else in our business,
our marketing, our branding is always about centered around our unique Selves and what we have to offer. And so events should be the same thing,
right, cause it’s just another extension of our brand. So don’t feel that you have to reach some kind of like If you’re not ready to do like a five star hotel retreat,
that’s perfectly fine. Just think strategically about what would work for your particular business or your TRIBE, cause you know your clients,
you know, like what they’re drawn to, what kind of things that they like and you know, your brands are you,
like more Corky, and you just want some kind of like you want to do a workshop. It’s in quarter Pierre be and because it has a lot of character and it’s not like a conference room somewhere,
that’s perfectly fine. But it just did something I run into a lot. Is that because kind of like this one example perception right now and we kind of what we see is what we assume that we have to do.
And that’s not necessarily true events at the end of day about leveling in your business without loving them in your brand and your income.
So start strategically about thinking what works for you. I mean, that’s why that’s the first step in working with me.
He’s all about strategy, cause it’s about what your needs are, what your goals are. What Yuri sources are in making something work for you.
Yeah, and I love that you say that because that is what is most prevalent online right now. Photography from great events.
You know, for example, like I hosted, I didn’t host. I attended a mastermind in San Diego this past year,
and it was a beautiful house overlooking the ocean. Full weekend event, catered event. It was absolutely fantastic.
And then I went to another event, which was just in afternoon. It was perfect. There are great people there in both events were fabulous.
And so I love that you said that because we do on Lee see the photography from the big, glamorous five star resorts.
Or, um, I have a really good friend who’s actually on my team of experts from my company.
Kathy Han and Kathy just hosted an amazing event in Costa Rica until we have these people like Kathy and like others that do events all the time,
and we see the photography from that. But I love that. I want our listeners to know that you guys could do anything you want based on your brand in your message.
And I love that You said that because you’re right. Nobody sees that. And so they think, Oh,
that would suck. I’m not going to do my own thing, but that’s actually not true at all.
So let’s talk about the second myth is that events are really expensive. Touched us through that the money aspect of it.
Because, of course, that’s what everybody’s thinking. Yeah, this comes. I’ve also heard some people say recently,
too. I’ll be happy if I just keep it. So there’s kind of this concept of we’re not gonna make any money with the event like I’m gonna do it to cultivate community and get my brand out there.
But I’m not gonna make any money, and that’s not the right mindset to have. I mean, we understand where it comes from because,
you know, we’re used to events like weddings or corporate events where it’s kind of it gets expensive and there’s a lot of money going out and you’re not getting anything back in.
But again, this is what makes our needs different from sort of the regular event planning. We’re in our business to make money.
So one of the things that you need to do is get rid of that mindset of I’m gonna break even or I’m not gonna make any money.
Because first of all, if you’re doing an event, especially if you’re doing like a workshop or a conference,
you should be up selling something at the end of that event because you’re not gonna get any warmer leads than when you’re in a room face to face with people who are already potential clients in my bought from you before,
or people that you’ve warmed up for a day, three days, what have you They’re gonna be primed to open their wallet and buy from you because they’ve experienced you in person for three days,
right? So that’s the first thing is what do you want to sell. What coaching package? What service?
What chords? And that actually should hope you strategize what you do with your event. Because whatever your event does should naturally lead up to that up cell.
So it’s not even They don’t even have to think about it at the end. It’s just like it’s a natural next step,
right? I love that. The other thing is not to get caught up in the logistics. This comes back to strategy.
This is why I have my package is set up. So we do strategy first and like all the details Second,
because those entrepreneurs were so good, it just jumping straight to all the logistics were like, we should do this venue and I should order that this food and like,
what kind of gift bag am I gonna have? Yeah, so then you’re you’re kind of like spending money without having getting your blueprint and place first.
So once you kind of know, like, these are my goals. This is what I want to sell.
This is how much I want to make. This is what my budget is. Then you’re a much better place to make those decisions when it comes to things like your venue or hiring help or,
you know, what kind of food options do you want to do? So I would also recommend that,
like, get your mind set out of you not to make money. And also, like, focus on strategy first before you start spending money and thinking about what you could spend it on.
Yeah, okay, love, that is well, and I think that, you know, we host we host an event every year.
It’s a lifestyle entrepreneur launch weekend, and we had it this year. And that’s a lesson that I have learned because I host this event that it’s not something I usually have a wait list.
Work privately with me. Well, anyway, a friend of mine said, Listen, April, you’re doing these people a disservice if you don’t open up the opportunity for people to up sell that after this event,
in my mentality, Woz and you guys listen to show I’m always honest. I’m like, Okay, I’m hosting this big event.
People have come here from, you know, across the country. They’ve spent so much money, I’m not gonna sit here and tell them.
Okay, Now spend thousands of dollars more. But it was true, And I remember my friends said to me,
You know, you’re really doing people a disservice. If you don’t at this time at the event offer,
really, what is the gold standard? What’s going to take them to the next level beyond this event?
I just kind of had to change my thinking on that. I’m always trying to watch out for everybody’s dollar,
you know? So if you guys are like me and you’re you’re thinking that in the same way, it’s actually not true at all.
And when I did that, it was a nine day difference, not necessarily out of the sails of that event,
because I was already on a wait list has already backloaded a couple of months to work with me privately,
but it was extended my weight less to work with me privately, but I really feel like it really did help the attendees who were there that really needed that.
I know that there was more beyond that, so that’s just my personal sharing here on that one. As faras up selling after an event,
even though it’s great for the bottom line, it actually is a disservice. Your people, if you don’t have something greater to help them implement after the event,
which is, which was a lesson that I had learned. So let’s talk about, you know, the next myth is a little bit we touched on.
But talking about like to the events have to be super big and elaborate. How many people do you have?
Or if you’re hosting event in Somebody’s listening to this and say, Man, I really would love to host an event.
But what if only five people show up? So let’s talk about that. Let’s talk about the numbers and the size of a bads.
I actually tell clients who are thinking about doing an event, and they’re just not sure that they’re ready to,
like, go big. It’s perfectly fine to start small, but you can do a small but premium event because you’re just providing value.
It’s just to a smaller group of people. So if you aren’t ready to kind of like do anything more than test the waters a little bit your first time out,
it’s perfectly fine to do like a 5 to 10% event. Just make it a premium event meaning you’re offering tons about you.
You’re giving them like, one on one time and you’re just really digging deep with them. Maybe they’re you’re giving them some other kind of special offer.
But this also kind of goes to what we’re talking about about we’re seeing, like, these big Five store kind of resort events,
and then we see, like all the things activities that those include, like they have, like, a champagne hour.
And they have, you know, these kinds of things which are fine, if that’s what you want to dio.
But that could be intimidating to somebody who’s just starting out. And so I just like to just kind of the point out that as faras the logistics go the activities that happened at that event,
the schedule, it doesn’t have to be anything you know, like super fancy thanking air quotes. You know,
it could be again. You know, your TRIBE and you know, your brand do things that give value and that are fun and cultivate community.
But do it in a way that aligns with who you are and who your attendees are cause again, Even if you did something that’s out of character for you on your brands,
but would be, you know, fancy. Then that would actually be a disservice to the event, right?
Cause you’re tends to be kind of like what’s going on, like we all come in jeans and T shirts and there’s like caviar.
Being going around like that doesn’t make sense, so don’t get caught up in that. It happens to be an elaborate affair.
It doesn’t have to be a packed schedule. Do what makes sense for you just as long as you’re giving amazing value cash.
I love that so much I’ll share that my master mind retreat that I hosted this year. You know,
a place like not the one that I went to, which was really elaborate. But you’re right, That’s not my brand.
I’m, you know, outdoor girl and my mastermind, Retweet I hosted this year had I had never seen this done before,
and I just want to share this, so to encourage you guys. And yes, I was nervous to do this because it had never been done before,
but I actually took my group of women up into the mountains and Rocky Mountain National Park, and everybody brought their jackets and warm coats,
and we went and they did a lot of deep work while they were hiking and doing like outside, Not necessarily endurance training,
but they were pushing their physical and mental and mind set limits all at once. And it was very along with along the lines of my brand.
Had I hosted it, it the rich Carlton, I would have been miserable in every single one of my attendees would have been miserable.
So I just want to encourage you guys. It was the biggest hit. Everybody loved it, and they were basically freezing cold.
Their fingers were totally freezing. This was This was a fall in winter mastermind retreat. It was super windy,
snowy, you know? But they have their hiking boots and their jackets, and we got up there into Rocky Mountain National Park and it was a very,
very powerful. In that case, it was like a one full day event. It was incredible. And so I just wanna encourage you guys in that,
And that was just very true to who I am. And it was very true to to whom my followers are.
But we you know, most people think of retreats like you’re saying is, you know, champagne and caviar,
and it would have been a lie hot. I hosted an event like that because I frankly don’t respond well,
and I don’t create. And I don’t grow well in those environments. And so I just wanna share that.
Sure, you’re totally right on. But I was nervous about it at first. That I’m glad. You sure that so thank you.
So and then let’s talk about the fact that people think that nobody’s gonna actually get on a plane and fly to them.
What do you think? You know, be a tough one. Sometimes it’s a self confidence or self esteem thing.
But sometimes we just don’t realize. Like if you have a good strategy in place, which we’ve talked about,
if you know what your attendees, whether their new clients or current clients, what they want. If you you know you’re gonna give them amazing value,
you know you’re going to give them the opportunity to buy something else that’s gonna continue that journey at the end.
There’s no reason to assume that people are not going to come man’s. There’s several ways you can actually help with that.
You can get some of your die hard current clients, like, you know, encourage them to come.
Maybe even give them a discount. And then they encourage their friends. And then when you have your attendees there who don’t know you,
they can talk with these people have worked with you. So then you created this environment that count like,
Oh, wow, there’s amazing stuff that’s gonna happen here, like, you know, So don’t get caught up in I don’t think people will come to see me focus more on your strategy in your plan and just know that you’re hitting all of the boxes and just move forward with confidence.
Because people are quite like we talked about today. People were craving these kinds of in person interactions like there’s a real need for,
like, that’s why I’m doing this. And that’s why I’m here talking to you guys. So be brave and step into that void because people are gonna walked to you.
They want that kind of interaction with you. And it’s going to do amazing things for you and your business and them as well.
Mmm. Thank you so much for everything. You cover today because I do think that I mean, it is really intimidating.
I know personally, it’s intimidating and and not naturally, being an event planner. There was there was a lot to do,
and it’s kind of a big step it first. I just appreciate you sharing that because I agree with you.
And the trends that we’re seeing is so much more about personal connection than anything else, especially for those people that have an online relationship with you.
And so I have one last question for you today, which is more of a logistical question about how far if you’re having a retreat,
that somebody or an event that somebody should travel to about how far in advance should you start sharing your event to give time for people to book their travel.
About nine months is usually, at least when you want to start. It’s very early, huh? Yeah,
it’s very early earlier than you think, because people will need to feel, you know, especially it’s a long weekend or weak that they need to be ableto be,
accommodate their schedule, block that time off and make all the necessary, like flight plans or get a baby sitter plans,
So Yeah, at least nine months. Oh, my gosh. Okay, Yes, that’s that’s way longer.
Guys, if you’re coming to my events, I’m so sorry. I usually don’t get usually don’t give me that much in advance,
but we have them all planned for 2020. So I will make sure that we get them out to you more months in advance.
Which means I’m already a month late on a couple of our events. Eso thank you so much. I really,
really appreciate your time and being here on the show. And I love what you’re doing because why you’re saying it is so true and what we’re seeing with online business.
And it’s just like developing these relationships and developing a following really, really is much more successful when you do have these personal connections to people.
And in the past, which gosh, like 2012 13 14 we started diving into Facebook communities in groups,
and at that time it was really great because Facebook was actually helping people interact better in those type of communities.
But it still wasn’t enough. Now we’re struggling with algorithms, and people aren’t seeing what’s happening in your communities and grooves,
and those are hard things to a hack, and we are craving face to face relationships. And it’s not just your clients.
You are, too, and that, you know you guys will grow even so much more and learn so much more about yourself is not true,
pure and a leader if you choose to step out and start hosting these events, So let’s talk about how people can find you.
So if they need help hosting events in giving on your your board for your strategy session, let’s talk about how people can connect with you.
They can go to my website, which is simply relate. Escape dot com. Another good place to follow me is on Instagram,
which my handle is relate, period Escape and I, every week post at least one of that myth,
that one event tip and how you can work with me. So that’s a good place. Even. Just just roll through my feet and make it really easy,
cause each picture that’s really into a myth or tip actually says it on the picture. I’m Seipei and make things really easy for you to see if you just literally go on binge right now if you wanted to.
And you can always give me an e mail to its Jenn with two ends at Relate Escape. Dr.
Lovett, you’re a shoot jen and email. And then you also have, like, a super secret hack type of giveaway that people can grab That’s going to simplify their event planning process,
right? Yes, it’ll actually this hack will actually hope with the things that we talked about today, because it’ll give you a lot of clarity and focus and help you to sort of get past those myths or those blocks.
So I would definitely encourage you guys. It’s only like two or three pages. It’s very brief, but it really will help you sort of get your momentum forward.
Awesome. Thank you so much, Jen. Thanks so much for being on the show in your time.
We We really appreciate it. I appreciate being here. Thanks so much. Okay, today we talked about four myths debunked,
and I’m curious if your opinion on hosting events has changed, how do you feel about hosting events now,
after listening to this episode, is there an event that you have set in your mind that maybe you want a host in 2021 maybe even later this year.
I would love to hear about that. Hit me out on Instagram at Sweet Life, underscore entrepreneur and tell me about your dream event that you want a host and all encourage you in that.
Now again, you can get all the things that we talked about today in the show notes from this episode by cruising over to Sweet Life podcast dot com forward slash 1 63 and take a screenshot of this episode in Tag both Jen at Relate Escape and Me on Instagram and leave us a review on Apple,
and we will make sure that we share your INSTAGRAM account to help promote your business. It will also give you an opportunity to become our featured sweet life entrepreneur,
a listener which I would love to highlight your business and that as well. Thank you so much for tuning into the show again.
Sweet life podcast dot com For a such 1 63 is where you can find all of our show notes and also the link to join Sweet Life Lunch.
My signature launch program. Plus all of the resource is we mentioned today