Looking for a Standing Room Only turnout? Here are the hottest tips for getting your speaker seen on campus.
Timing is Everything.
When planning an event, consider the rhythm of student life on your campus. For example, schools with a large commuter population might want to re-consider offering a Friday night performance. Finals time might not be the best opportunity for a heady presentation on the future of global politics, but an entertaining, study-break program may give students a better reason to fill those auditorium seats.
The mantra of college students nationwide. Offer free theme-based giveaways to help raise awareness about an event, and never underestimate the power of the prominently publicized words "FREE ICE CREAM." It can work wonders for gathering a crowd of cafeteria-fed students.
Make Use of Faculty Resources.
Don't forget to invite campus dignitaries to your event, which can greatly increase a presentation's profile around campus and in local media. Also, let professors know about your program. Many times, they will offer extra credit to students for attending relevant lectures, or at least help get the word out to their classes.
Advertising and Press Releases.
Advertising works best when it's timely and consistent. Begin advertising in the college newspaper a month prior to an event, and in local community papers two to three weeks before. Also, take advantage of college radio and television spots to help publicize.
Paper. Paper. Paper.
Within the realms of environmental consciousness, good old-fashioned paper fliers, posters and handouts are still a great way to make an impression on campus. Post flyers in heavily trafficked areas and hand out quarter-flyers the week of the event. Also ask your HSB representative about any existing promotional materials available on the speaker, including posters and press releases.
A movie that doesn't cost $8.00 will often attract students in droves. Bringing in an associated lecture program is the perfect way to turn a film screening into a major campus event.
Tie-In with Other Groups.
In addition to elevating awareness about a particular event, co-sponsoring with other organizations, clubs or departments on campus can help to meet the cost of brining in speakers. Book Signings, Press Conferences, and Other Activities.
Often times, a book signing, press conference, media interview or other special request can be accommodated to help promote an event. Check with your HSB representative about the possibility of arranging such activities as soon as you feel there may be interest. Generally the more notice you are able to provide, the greater the possibility of making it happen.