Making a Positive Impression on Event Organizers

Making a Positive Impression on Event Organizers 

 

As an event organizer, I often receive “cold call” emails from instructors who would like me to host them for a workshop, and nearly all of these requests go into the trash.  This isn’t because I’m not interested or don’t want to host them, it’s because they didn’t take the time to show me why I should.

 

Here’s a typical email request:

“Hi, I’m lady Sparkle Pants from XYZ. I would love to come to your studio and teach. I’ve heard good things about your events, and I am booking my calendar for next year. Let me know if you would like to sponsor me for a workshop. My website is: mywebsiteisprettyandbragsaboutmyachievementsbutsaysnothingofwhatIcanshare.com.

Thanks,

Lady Sparkle Pants”

 

This year I’ve written several eBooks on the business side of dancing.  It’s been fun combining my “day” job and “night” job into one.  An interesting thing happened when I published my Workshop Hosting 101 eBook, which I created for dancers who wanted to become event hosts and organizers – dancers who wanted to travel and teach were buying it too

Curious, I emailed a few of them and asked why.  One dancer said she bought it to see what event organizers thought about when hiring dancers.  Another said she heard the book had a section on media kits and wanted to make hers had everything it mentioned.

Check out the ebook here:http://raq-on.net/index.php/store/ebooks-for-professional-dancers

I recently asked a well-known dancer for her media kit. The answer I received: she could teach anything, just let her know what I would like her to teach, and she’d teach it.  As an organizer, that doesn’t help me put together an event description or promotional material.  As a workshop participant, I’m certainly not choosing an event without a description of what I’m going to get out of it.

Flash forward a few weeks later, and I’m talking with other event organizers who are also frustrated with the additional workload brought on when workshop instructors aren’t prepared. Providing low quality photos, spelling errors in workshop descriptions, or long winded bios that are off-topic are just a few of the areas sponsors struggle with.

Before social media and widespread internet availability, professional and aspiring dancers had media kits readily available. The artist was clear regarding what to use for promotional materials.  Unfortunately, most dancers have not kept up with this easy “grab and go” style of media kits and instead simply refer you to their website, Facebook, YouTube, etc.

This is a persnal pet peeve of mine and here’s why – a dancer’s site might include pictures or their Facebook photos could be tagged.  If you find one that you like and use it, you have no idea if that photo is protected/copyrighted.  If you use it on your flyers and marketing materials, you put yourself at risk for infringement and a lawsuit that could result in financial ramifications.

 

Event organizers and hosts want you to be successful, so help us help you by being prepared.  Here are the top 5 items you should have in your media kit for your Event Organizer:

1.   Provide a prepared, appropriate bio

Have multiple bios prepared-short bios, long bios, teaching bios, performing bios, lecturing bios, etc. Please don’t make us edit down a long bio.  This can be incredibly frustrating when we are busy trying to make arrangements and planning for the event.

 

2.     A variety of permissioned, high-resolution photos

We need a variety of photos depending on what you’re presenting or the marketing scheme of the event.  Give us full body action and studio shots, headshots, photos with backgrounds that are easily edited out (a bonus if you do this for us!). If you are teaching a folkloric style or special topic, send us a photo of you in the costuming or styling.  Make sure the photos you send are ones you have rights to and are non-copyrighted. There is nothing worse than spending a good deal of money on promotional materials, only to find an email from an angry photographer in your inbox.

 

3.     Potential workshop topics and descriptions

Provide a list of workshop names and descriptions. Make sure they match what you’re actually going to teach and tell the attendees what they are going to get out go it. If it is a choreography workshop, please state so. Make your offerings unique, and let me know why I should hire you to teach it.

List the length of time needed to cover your material. I can’t count how many times I’ve said, “I like that, let’s do it!” only to have the instructor tell me it won’t fit into my general 4 hour workshop format.

 

4.     Video & promotional materials

Send us your YouTube links, promotional reels, and clips of performances and/or teaching. These should support your overall package not take the place of.  Be sure you are the owner or have permission to share these materials, as copyright issues are similar to photo rights. Let us know what items are safe to use.

 

5.     Make your media kit accessible and easy to find

Create a page on your website, a private link, or make it downloadable or available by email/mail. I find ones that I can easily copy and paste from are the best. Here’s mine as an example: http://raq-on.net/index.php/hire-booking/workshops

 

6.     Bonus point items:

  • State that you are insured (if you are)
  • State that you have a contract available upon request (also state any special needs, accommodations, or requests)
  • Let me know that you’ll provide your W-9 or foreign information upon request so I know that you are willing to be compliant with tax laws (Believe it or not, I’ve had this issue multiple times).

 

Let’s work together to make our events successful and fun for everyone!

 

Amity Alize

Originally posted on Raq-On.net Feb 2015


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