Designing a better field trip

So the Social Art Field Trip idea has been very well received. Everybody I’ve spoken to thinks it’s a great idea: “love the concept”, “sounds really cool” etc. Thank you!

However, despite the outpouring of encouragement and support, nobody’s actually booked a place yet. So the first one, planned for tomorrow, isn’t going ahead. I’d like to work out what I need to do differently to get the “cool concept” really working – the positive side of this is that I get to ask and find out what works rather than it just “working” and me not learning anything about why :)

So here are the variables I can think of that we can tweak to make it more appealing or practical:

Timing: They are 10-4 on Thursdays. Is there a better time of day? Is there a better day? This is always the obvious thing with events “Oh I’d have loved to have come but Xday is my day for doing Y, sorry” “If you did it on Zday I could come” but it can send you round in circles trying to please everyone. I still have people telling me that Tuttle would be “much more successful” if we didn’t do it on Friday mornings when they can’t come. So think about this as “If I were to be doing it every day, which day would you like to come” and “Should it start earlier or later?”

Length: is 6 hours too long? or not long enough?

Content: Do I need to specify more clearly what we’re going to do or was it too vague? I’m assuming from the positive feedback that the content is OK but thought I’d check. Is there anything I can do to make it more appealing?

Sales & Marketing: I blogged about it 3 weeks before the first one, tweeted several times (I have about 3k followers) and sent out invitations by e-mail and twitter DM to around 200 people (mostly asking that they pass it on or suggest it to other people). I also posted it on chinwag.com, done my usual thing of talking about it wherever I go and announcing it at Tuttle. Is this just way too little? Do I need to allow myself to be more spammy?

I made the assumption that most people in my immediate network, those who already understand something of my work would not be the market for this. Is that right? My approach then was to ask those people to put it in front of people that they thought would be interested or find it useful. Is there an obvious flaw in this? How could I have done it more effectively?

Price: is £75+VAT for a day too much… or too little?

Something else: Umm… I dunno, is there something in my blind spot? Something obvious to everyone else but not visible to me because of where I’m sitting?

All thoughts very welcome (preferably publicly here in the comments so we can all learn, but by e-mail if you want to be private)

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4 thoughts on “Designing a better field trip”

  1. I’d totally missed mention of this in the first place, have no idea what it’s about so can’t contribute anything positive except to suggest that a link from this post to wherever you first explained the concept might be useful.

  2. I like the content and concept of the workshop and am fully supportive of it. But you and I both know that sales doesn’t happen out of thin air – no matter what support you get from your community. Community love and support adds value to your sales effort though as it validates what you’re doing.

    A different approach would be to offer this workshop as an option but without a fixed date in mind. One of a selection of workshop types that you do. Then you can work with a business to fix a date that suits their team and adjust the workshop for their specific needs.

    And if you’re offering a workshop like this, I’m not sure 3 weeks is long enough – not everyone can get quick sign off on budget or may need to plan further ahead than 3 weeks. I know it doesn’t feel like a lot of money – and maybe pricing is the problem. Hard for me to judge without knowing what else is out there in the market place.

    Or if you’re looking at someone paying out of their own pocket for this rather than their boss’s out of personal interest and personal development, then you need to run it on a weekend or over a couple of evenings (say from 5.30 to 8.30pm on two consecutive nights).

    I’m not clear who the market is for this though and maybe some more research around that is needed in terms of both positioning and pricing and then a more focussed approach on sales that is about phone calls rather than emails? If you’re wavering about a decision, it’s a lot easier to say no by email than f2f or on the phone. Just my personal experience.

    Good luck and keep us all posted with progress.

    1. Thanks Helen

      I’m going to keep the Thursday slots open. I’ve had a first booking over the weekend.

      I’m going to focus on making the descriptions of them clearer – I think an issue is that the people who understand what I’m talking about already probably aren’t the market for it, and the people that it would work for don’t quite understand what I’m talking about yet… We’ll get there :)

      Thanks again

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