What's the difference between a great and poor
seminar invitation? Below we use an example of a financial advisor
who seeks to attract seniors to his financial seminar. Follow the
concepts as they apply equally to any profession for success when
targeting a specific audience.
Poor Seminar Invitation
If Mrs. Smith receives a seminar invitation
About Annuities—how to save taxes and gain safety,” it
is obvious this is your agenda to sell annuities. I
understand that you think this is her agenda because the annuity
is a tool that helps her get what she wants (e.g. reduced taxes
and safety). Surgery is also a tool that helps you get what
you want (good health), but do you have a desire for surgery?
Your potential attendees want the payoff—they don’t want
involvement with the means, the tool or the service that produces
the payoff. So your seminar invitation must address their agenda.
Mrs. Smith will not attend your financial seminar
- She is not interested in your sales pitch
and your financial seminar invitation screams "sales pitch"
- She does not want to feel pressured
- She is not interested in what a sales person
- She is interested in insight, not merely product
- She does not want an annuity (she doesn’t
even know what it is)
Great Seminar Invitation
Now let’s suppose you send a different financial
seminar invitation. This one is titled “Six Ways Retirees Can
Cut Taxes Now.” The seminar invitation lists these topics to
- How to reduce or eliminate tax on social security
- The two assets held by many retirees that can
be double taxed (and how to avoid it)
- Why some retirees pay excess taxes by having
the wrong investment in their IRA
- How it’s possible to get an 8% payout
on your principal without risk to capital
- The government’s offer to subsidize the
cost of heath protection yet few retirees use
- How to be sure that your spouse or children
have the financial resources to make them secure when you’re
Every one of the above topics can include use
of an annuity but annuities are not mentioned, because buying an annuity
is not part of the prospect’s agenda. If you want prospects
to attend a financial seminar or respond to any seminar invitation,
your offer must be 100% about their agenda and 0% about your agenda.
Notice that every topic above is about the payoff and does not mention
the means to get the payoff.
Seminar Invitation Title
Once you have the right list to invite, you need
to develop a winning financial seminar invitation to attract attendees.
A winning seminar invitation has these three components:
- An emotionally grabbing seminar title
- Emotionally compelling specific bullet points
- Biography of a speaker that attendees want
To develop a great financial seminar invitation
title, you need to know how your target audience thinks. You cannot
assume that your market thinks like you do. If you’re 40 years
old, you probably think that statistics are important. You have been
raised in a technical age of facts and figures and you think the
fact that "43% of people over age 65 are likely to have a long
term care need" is a compelling tidbit. But your target audience
will not be motivated by your sacred statistic. People age 65+ are
- Losing their independence
- Avoiding a nursing home
- Protecting their assets
Therefore, your statistic-emphasizing seminar invitation
title "43% of People Over Age 65 Will Need Long Term Care Services—Don't
Be Caught Unprotected" will get significantly lower response
than these titles:
Since people age 65+ are generally motivated more by fear than opportunity, these seminar invitation titles will have a higher attraction value.
- "Attention Retirees: Never Go to a Nursing Home—How to
Maintain Your Financial Independence at Any Age"
- "90% of Retirees Have Inadequate Health Coverage—Illnesses
Your HMO, Medicare and Health Insurance Do Not Cover"
- "Asset Protection-Three Steps to Preserving Your Assets,
Health and Financial Independence"
Seminar Invitation Bullet Points
While a strong financial seminar invitation title
will capture your reader’s attention, the bullet points sell
your prospect on attending the seminar. The more compelling your
bullet points, the larger your seminar audience.
Each bullet point on your seminar invitation captures
a “sub-group.” While all of your prospects should be
from a qualified list, as discussed above, there are sub-groups with
distinct concerns within the list.
For example, some seniors may have a concern about
long-term care and are interested in knowing about insurance. Others
don't want to think about it. Others know that long-term healthcare
needs are a reality, but they think they are personally immune. Others
don't want to be a burden to their children. Bullet points can help
capture each of these sub-groups.
Consider these bullet points below your
financial seminar invitation title:
- Six Ways to Reduce the Cost of Long-Term
- Does Any Really Need Long Term Care Protection,
Or Is It Just Hype?
- One Million People Will Enter a Nursing Home
This Year—Here's How To Make Sure You're Not One of Them
- Protect Your Assets—How the Federal Medicaid
Program Can Force You into Poverty
- Asset Protection—4 Ways To Protect Your Assets
from Financial and Health Catastrophe
- How Bill Smith, Age 43, Could Have Avoided
Bankruptcy While Paying His Mother's Nursing Care Expenses
The more relevant seminar invitation bullet points
you have, the more sub-groups you will capture, the larger your seminar
attendance. I typically include six bullet points on my seminar invitation
under the seminar title.
How can you learn to write bullet points like
this? It will take some study, but some excellent references are:
- The Ultimate Sales Letter by Dan Kennedy
- Words That Bring You Riches by Ted Nicholas
Your Seminar Invitation Biography
The last item of a winning seminar invitation
is your biography and picture.
Here are some rules for a good biography:
- Don't start off with your title and broker
dealer or insurance company
- Bad: Joe Jones is a registered representative
with ABC Financial Services
- Leave your accomplishments and credentials
to the second half of the biography. Use the first half to tell the
reader what you can do for them and why they should come to see
- Always close your biography with an item of
personal interest (e.g. where you live, about your spouse, your
- Never talk about the fact that you have clients.
Your biography is not a sales tool.
- Do not talk about your ethics (e.g. Joe believes
in treating his clients the same as he would his own parents).
Be specific by quantifying what you represent.
Add a photo to your seminar invitation
Add a professional business photograph—a torso
shot. A picture with the spouse, dog and kids is inappropriate as
is a picture where you are smiling like you won the lottery. You
want to portray a smart financial professional with your photo.
more on seminar invitations and seminar logistics