Next week will begin our weekly planning call, so ahead of that (and perhaps a bit later than I should have) I sent out my draft calendar and marketing plan. It was hard to let go, I really yearn for the detail of a full project plan, but that’s just too much to tackle this time around. My plan, boiled down to bullets:
- On the weekly call go over the next two weeks, confirming efforts for the next week and looking ahead one week, tweaking plan as we go
- Beginning at D-60 do a weekly message, at D-14 (or about) go to a daily message
- Review now the plan for working with sponsors/partners to message to their lists and get those conversations going – we want them to land at certain points, not all in one lump
- Review reg count each week, panic if needed
I also wish for a real kick-off meeting. It would be an interesting thing to find a solid half day to put the team in the room, have everyone go over their plans and do some more brain storming. Too corporate-ish? Why?
I’m reminded that it’s not easy to drive and navigate at the same time. Hopefully with course plotted, we can now just drive.
My biggest todo now is to work on the “bring someone” plan. I need to understand common objections (and how to rebut them), common personalities/titles (require different approaches), and think about how to incent that behavior just a little, then get it back in something I can explain in a couple paragraphs at most. It’s a shift from marketing to sales in a lot of ways, how to convince someone who hasn’t been to go? The incentive is least important for you, the convincer, because not only will you be going to SQLSaturday you really want your colleagues to go because it raises the bar across the board at the office. The incentive is perhaps more interesting to the convincee, what will tip them to go? I’m convinced it’s not your/our raw enthusiam, which I think is where we often start (and end).
Instead, I think we need to focus on value and fears and get it down to talking points:
- I’ve been, it was great, and I learned this and I met x.
- Free <> no value – look at how many speakers fly in at their own expense.
- Here’s the schedule, you might find this and this and that interesting (as you hand over a printed schedule highlighted)
- Flyer and origami on the desk, with an “I’m going, want to go with me?” sticky note
- You don’t have to stay all day. Come to a session or two and see what you think
- Lunch is great!
Part of that is dealing with rejection. How hard to try and when to stop?
Back to the meeting and real life, I’ll try to catalog what we try each week and anything that seems to work or not work. Probably not always that clear, but a running log will be interesting. I saw Esteban Garcia reply back on my last post about the year over year trending graph that Kendal does and right there, that was worth the time it took to do the short post. Never know what will help or inspire, for this event or another.
Here’s a PASS Summit wish too – give us some training on marketing and some to share lessons learned. Maybe that is the SQLSaturday Roundtable, maybe a separate smaller meeting. I’d go to that one!