Ah, an interesting week for registrations. We’ve jumped to 426 registered, making my goal of 500 doable. The jump is in part due to timing, in part due to only having mailed to the “already registered” list only last week (a goof on my part). This week we’ll have two messages going on, one to the registered list to work on bring a friend, the other to the not yet attending list to continue to plug the event. Besides that, here’s a few more things going on:
- Emailed a reminder to the Florida chapter leaders asking for one more plug at their September meetings
- Drafted an email that ONETUG has agreed to blast to their list (to go out after their Sep meeting). This is huge, it will be a ‘one topic’ email just about SQLSaturday.
- Finished scheduling the last of my canned auto-tweets through this Friday, then we’ll change the mix (interestingly, I see relatively few registrants opting to post their attendance to Twitter)
- I’m trying to finish the rest of the email messages this week, I don’t want to risk life/work hitting me just when I need to be on my game the most in the last couple weeks
- Discussing if we can have someone staff Twitter all day at the event and what we can do with it if we can
- Also discussing our photo strategy, I’d really like to have those for next year
- Asked Kendal to also chart the number of emails sent out to reg/non-reg lists by week
- Next week I’ll send the email to the host venue (college) advisory council as part of the final push
- I still need the 2007 & 2008 registration numbers
- I need to think more about what I can do at the event to help us market better next year. Focus group, surveys, contact gathering, photos, what else?
At this point the strategy is simple – keep pushing!
Here is the current chart:
Here’s something I haven’t talked about much yet. Over the past five years we’ve seen an incremental decline in the number of registrations, from a high of 384 in 2009 to 344 last year. Not a huge variance. Enough to worry? No, yet at the same time I’d always rather see it static or growing. It’s hard to attribute the changes year over year to any particular cause, but my guess based on what we see this year is not enough marketing messages sent in the last two years. By “not enough” we might be talking a difference of two or three, but it takes time for the message to get through the ‘clutter’ of work and life in the inbox. Kendal created a big win by starting the process of visualizing what little we know about our marketing efforts and it’s easy to see this was a big miss when we built SQLSaturday (a combination of not enough time and not enough vision). Having charts like this built-in would make it easier (and more likely) that whoever owns marketing is competing to match and beat the previous years number.