Planning an open evening at your clinic? Launching a new device to your patients? Hosting a VIP evening? You probably have plenty of ideas, all centred around copious glasses of champagne and canapés but is fizz and food really enough to make your event flourish? Or will you watch that Champagne go flat and the canapés curl because the promised guest list fails to materialise?
Let's go back to basics. Do your research. Once you know why you want to host an event, do some research on potential dates. You can't possibly expect to cobble together a successful evening in the space of a fortnight and even if you can there' s no guarantee that people will be free to attend. Plan ahead. What nights work best for your patients? Are Thursdays your busiest days? Is it dead on a Monday? Choose a day that works for your patients. Now check the diary for special dates that may clash. Planning an event on Bonfire Night? Great, you'll have the pick of the sparklers as all your guest list will be elsewhere with their families watching the fireworks. Half Term? Best of luck getting your guests to attend as most will be with their children at Centre Parcs cycling around a forest in the rain. Fancy a weekend event? Fantastic, but double-check it doesn't clash with a big sporting event.
Now you have your date and you know people are likely to be free to attend, you need to decide the 'timeline' . Are you launching a new device? You'll need a demo treatment, an informal talk to educate patients on the benefits of the treatments and some special offers to tempt patients to sign up on the night. There's one thing that's guaranteed to get people through the door and it is an 'on-the-night' offer that's never to be repeated. Make it worth their while. Contact your Device Company Account Manager and ask them to attend and help with the event. Contact companies who offer complimentary products that would work well with the treatment and get free samples for guests. Stop and think, what would make YOU get off the sofa and attend the event? Some clinics even include jewellery or clairvoyants at their events. Do what works well with your clinic and client base.
Goodie Bags! Remember attending parties when you were a child and getting very excited at being given party bags as you left? You never grow out of that. I'm not saying stuff a slice of cake wrapped in a napkin along with some strawberry laces and a yoyo in a bag and hand those out, but make them event-specific. Include samples of products you stock in clinic, a discount voucher and some patient brochures. Choose a few luxury chocolates and add those. See if there are any local businesses that enhance what you do and suggest they donate some vouchers or products in return for promoting them at your event. Everyone loves a freebie. Great businesses to partner with are hairdressers, personal trainers, bridal boutiques, florists and even off-licences.
Advertise your event. Send out an eShot to all patients on your database inviting them to your event. Put up posters in clinic advertising it and brief your staff to mention it to patients when they chat. This is also where your relationships with local businesses come in, as you can ask them to display posters to advertise your event as it can often bring in new patients. Once people start to RSVP make a list of the names and follow up two weeks before and again a few days before. People forget and life gets in the way. You're there to remind them. This is where most clinics fail. If you do not remind your guests about the event the same week it is scheduled then do not be surprised when most fail to show.
Above all, generate excitement at the event and your patients will be keen to attend. After all, champagne and shopping is everyone's favourite pastime and if you combine this with something that will make them thinner, younger-looking and glowing then your event will be a success and your diary will be full.
If you would like to discuss planning an event with The Aesthetic Consultant please use the website contact form. We specialise in clinic launches, treatment launches, device manufacturer launches and open days.