The Las Vegas "What Happens in Vegas, Stays in Vegas" meme has become well known and is used to attract visitors and curiosity seekers.
It may work for the Las Vegas CVB, but just the opposite is true of Franchisee Conventions!
One of the most important lessons we've learned from producing Conventions for a wide variety of Franchise companies is what happens at the convention should be shared and utilized after the convention is over.
The reason is because it can be invaluable as a learning and motivational tool.
Here are 4 points to consider:
Film your convention. By having a good clear video of the major presentations you now have the opportunity to ensure that the messages can be seen and heard by those franchises who did not attend the convention while also providing the attendees with a great tool for holding staff meetings back at the office to brief their team on what direction the company is heading and what goals are being set for the local Franchise.
Highlight videos showing both the business and social activities are valuable tools to convince non-attendees to sign up for the next convention. Show them the fun and excitement they are missing. They are also perfect for showing at Discovery Days to give prospective Franchisees a great look at your Franchise culture.
Awards Presentation videos are a great way to further recognize the best of the best and motivate others to strive to be the best.
Another great way to use convention videos is to post links to them on your website - password protected of course - so all Franchisees have access to seeing them at their convenience.
Some tips: 2 cameras are better than 1 because it allows for more editing opportunities that will make the video more visually interesting and engaging. Also, editing in some PowerPoint slides that illustrate key points in the presentation will help drive home the message.
One of our mentors, the late Tony Martino, used to say, the real convention happens by the pool and in the bar. What he meant was franchisees need time to mingle and connect so they can share their stories, successes, problems and concerns. Friendships are forged and a network of support is created that will last for years to come. Camaraderie is critical to a successful convention.
Teambuilding events are another great way to create camaraderie at conventions. They have the added benefit of getting franchisees to meet other Zees from around the country and work together on a fun event.
3. Ride the Theme
A good convention theme should not be retired at the end of the convention. Use it throughout the year in updates on your digital media - emails, podcasts, digital newsletters and web-site portals. Post updates on progress, success stories and testimonials. If you promised something from the podium - products, programs, people etc, film and show a video when it is accomplished and frame it within the theme established at the convention.
4. Enthusiasm is Contagious
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, share your enthusiasm. You want your attendees to leave the convention proud of the Franchise and their decision to buy a franchise and pumped up about the prospect for the year ahead. Make sure that they are told to share that pride and excitement with their employees. Enthusiasm is contagious and enthusiasm leads to better performance and greater achievements.
So what happens at your convention is a mother lode of information and inspiration.
Don't leave it at the hotel or resort when you head home.
Use it - your convention is a great asset that will pay big dividends on your convention investment.