Increasing your ROI can be a little bit like improving your golf game – everyone is telling you the same generic tips but none of them are actually helping. Suffice to say that you aren’t learning anything new when they tell you to increase revenue, decrease costs and evaluate your investments. If you’ve done that and are still one of the many events industry businesses that want a little extra to put them over the hump, let’s look at some specific, perhaps unexpected, ways to increase your ROI. Without the vague and generic clichés.
Time = Money
Okay, so there is still one relevant cliché here. But the point holds extra weight when talking about the events industry where dedicating more time to existing and potential customers directly correlates with increased sales. So why do so many venues continue to look only at making their processes cheaper but not quicker and more efficient? Adopting practices that decrease the amount of time it takes to complete a task increases the amount of time you can use to sell more and increase your revenue.
Stay The Course – But Draw A Map
In practice, you might already be doing pretty much everything right. Your customers leave satisfied with your service, generate referrals and open dialogue about repeat business in the future. That part of your business is perfect - but wait, do you remember exactly how you got here? Often times, providing the kind of experience that results in this kind of customer satisfaction involves making on-the-fly alterations, providing additional services and working beyond the agreed upon tasks. Delivering on these is all part of running a great business. But if you didn’t track everything you did along the way, many of these details won’t make it to the final invoice and your customers won’t get billed accordingly.
This is because many managers are using systems that don’t track these changes in real-time or sync them with their invoicing software. They aren’t billing what they actually sold. Software that moves with you, available on your phone or any other device, allows you to instantly record every change as it happens, so there’s no space for revenue to slip through the cracks. Software like Ungerboeck’s even has the tools to create and send invoices quickly within the same system, reducing the potential for you or your customers to forget anything you’ve provided. Don’t just go the extra mile for your customers in practice, go the extra mile on paper.
Win More, Not New
It can be an easy conclusion to draw that when booked spaces provide revenue then more booked spaces would provide more revenue. Eventually, however, that oversimplified conclusion could hurt your business. The hours, resources, staff and infrastructure needed to win new business compared to retaining existing business makes your repeat customers much more valuable.
At a certain threshold, adding the resources necessary to gain new business actually costs more money than the new business generates. Rather than trying to boost your revenue by investing loads of time, energy and money into new bookings, many venues can benefit more from nurturing existing bookings and trying to upsell additional offerings to them.
Consider which investment you might prefer as a bank – someone with no credit history requesting a small loan or someone with a very strong history of success requesting a slightly larger loan than the last time. The same goes for your revenue from booking spaces. You’re much more likely to sell a larger package to an existing client than you are to sell a small package to a client with whom you have no history. And of course, the necessary resources are much easier to come by.
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