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How to Develop and Promote Successful Seminars and Workshops: The Definitive Guide to Creating and Marketing Seminars, Workshops, Classes, and Conferences 1st Edition

3.7 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0471527091
ISBN-10: 0471527092
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

A complete guide to succeeding in today’s burgeoning seminar business—from developing a program and market testing, to pricing, promotion, advertising, and more! How to Develop & Promote Successful Seminars & Workshops The adult education business—seminars, workshops, classes, conferences—is one of the fastest growing industries in the country and, for many, extremely profitable. Now, Howard Shenson shares proven-effective, research-based strategies responsible for filling more than one million seminar seats, to allow anyone with marketable knowledge to succeed in the seminar business. You’ll learn:
  • How to select a marketable subject and test market any seminar for about $1,000 or less
  • How to develop a dynamic program and effective program materials
  • How to create a powerful, registration producing marketing strategy and design winning promotional materials
  • How to assess promotional effectiveness and fine-tune marketing to increase sales
  • How to evaluate and choose where and when to conduct your seminar or workshop
  • How to select hotel and conference facilities
  • How to price your program to ensure maximum registrations/profitability
  • How to develop or obtain program materials and how to add to your profits through back-of-the-room sales of products and services
  • How to creatively select and rent mailing lists, and maximize your direct mail response while reducing marketing expense

About the Author

HOWARD L. SHENSON, CMC, is an internationally recognized authority on the marketing of seminars, information products, and consulting services. His creative strategies have been responsible for the sale of more than one million seminar registrations. He has written a number of bestselling books, including The Contract and Fee-Setting Guide for Consultants and Professionals and Shenson on Consulting, both published by Wiley.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 275 pages
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Inc; 1 edition (September 3, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0471527092
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471527091
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.7 x 10.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #281,159 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By James F. Taszarek on June 17, 2000
Format: Paperback
By "depends" I mean your level of experience. If you're new at seminars and workshops this book is a solid goldmine of basic information. Shenson did a good job of providing the theories and the very practical. Lots of forms and check off lists. Good basic stuff. If, on the other hand, you have experience - it's a bit elementary, and a bit dated. With a 1990 copyright, the book pre-dates PowerPoint for example. The focus of the material is definitely on the promotion of the workshop - not the development. While there's much it doesn't speak to - it's a good starter for the novice.
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Format: Paperback
This is a good introductory book for those that need to develop and promote successful seminars and workshops. The book covers what one needs to know about developing a program, market testing, setting the right fees, marketing, promotion, advertising and publicity. The reader is provided with useful practical tips and advice that I have used to good effect.

The book is well written in simple English that is easy to follow and understand. Despite the book being a bit dated, the advice it provides is still relevant and very useful and practical. Even the veteran has something to learn from this excellent book.

Those who wish to capitalize on the growing business of seminars, workshops, conferences and training classes are recommended to read this book for guidance and directions.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
While this book gives a good starting point for a seminar newbie, it is quite hampered by its dated material. All statistics and pricing examples are from the late 1980's. There is no recognition anywhere in the book that the Internet exists, PowerPoint can be used in presentations, etc. For instance, you are warned against using carbon copy paper. Hello? Good in 1990, but needs a serious and thorough updating to reflect current trends and technologies.
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After reading this book, I feel like I've hired a professional advisor to coach me through starting a training practice. The book covers all the bases: how to choose a topic, how to promote your workshop, how to price it, details about booking facilities, the importance of the back-of-the-room selling, and other topics. The chapters have an authentic feel, coming from someone who has learned from his own mistakes and the mistakes of others, and gives practical and useful tips.

The chapters on testing different mailing lists, prices, days of the week, headlines, brochure sizes is very good. The author refers to dozens of research studies, illustrating how different lists can lead to drastically different profitability. His numbers sense is very good, showing how to calculate break-even attendance, how to decide how much money to risk on initial marketing, how lower attendance can be more profitable than high attendance.

The chapter on making money from selling videotapes, audiotapes and consulting services is also very good, where the author shows several examples of how speakers increased their profits 30% or more by selling additional products at the speaking event. Again, the author shows great business sense about how to increase your profits.

My only complaint is the book is 20 years old and I wonder how much is still relevant. For instance, he has case studies of promoting a seminar through the daily newspaper and direct mail but has nothing to say about the internet, which must surely be an important part of marketing seminars in the 21st century. The dollar figures are all from 1990, so when he says you can conduct a market test for under $1,000 it is meaningless. What is that in 2010 dollars? And is the advice even valid today?
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I just ordered this book and was immediately put off by the fact that its copyright is 1990 and there is absolutely nothing in here regarding the internet. With email marketing, web sites, email, forums, blogs, you name it... I cant imagine any "how to" book on promoting a workshop not including the power of the internet.

I suppose its a good book, but with no information on web marketing, it has little value for me. It needs a major edit to include internet best practices.
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By Lance H. on September 29, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a good, broad, but very introductory treatment of the topic. It would only be good for someone with very little experience who is looking at getting into the paid seminar business. The book is not going to be very useful for those with even basic seminar experience, or those with a solid marketing background. It seems the target audience for this book would be very small; hardly anyone is going to be planing large-scale, paid seminars unless they have both a fair amount marketing experience, and seminar experience.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have read it cover to cover and it has lots of great information on the seminar business, unfortunately it is somewhat dated marketing system I just can't see the use of direct mail as a main means of promoting anything these days, but alas what do I know, I am just the student at the feet of the master. I would recommend it otherwise.
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By Drew on April 20, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Book was probably amazing in the early 90's. It's in desperate need of an update. It teaches outdated strategies (none of which require the internet). Still, there is some useful ideas in here that are universal. But, overall, not worth it.
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