Business OverviewIf you delight in the showmanship of arranging events and you like the energy and inspiration of a fine seminar, then this is the business for you. As a seminar promoter, you'll locate talent--speakers with something interesting and exciting to impart--then line up attendees and make all the arrangements to provide your guests with a memorable experience. People who enjoy your first seminar will come back for more. In addition to the fees you earn from the seminar itself, you can make additional tidy sums by selling audiotapes or videotapes of each program. You'll need the nose to sniff out terrific speakers, people who can amuse, inspire and teach others and infuse the program with a healthy positive energy. You'll also need sales and marketing skills and the ability to plan and organize events. Previous experience in event-planning jobs is a big help but not an absolute necessity. If you've produced community theater shows or charity fund-raisers, you've got what it takes. You'll also need good writing skills to devise intriguing brochures and sales materials.
The MarketYour customers will be the people who attend your seminars. The best way to attract them is to come up with a niche, a range of topics both unique and trendy in your area, and fill it. Another good way to start is by hosting seminars in a field or hobby you already know; you'll know just what others in your interest group will want to learn. Start a direct-mail campaign. Send brochures describing your seminars to lists of prospects. You can purchase these from a list broker, or you may already have access to mailing lists of people in interested organizations or associations. Place ads in local publications.
Needed EquipmentYou'll need a computer with a laser printer, a color printer, a scanner, the usual office software, database software to maintain mailing lists of attendees, and a desktop publishing program for designing brochures and fliers.