Have you ever tried to sign up for a paid networking event and can't find the link to RSVP or the number to call to RSVP? If not, then you're not out networking much, are you? If going to networking events is suppose to be fun, stress free and good for business, why is registering for them so difficult?
Recently, my assistant, Lauren Cheek, was trying to register her and several members of our team for various events. Therefore, I'm allowing her the space below to talk about some of her frustrations.
**The Following is Lauren's Experience in regards to registering for events**
Recently, I’ve had some difficulty registering for various events. I received an email that previewed an upcoming event; it had an introduction to the event, location, time, price and also included two links to RSVP. On first glance, it appeared that this was a great preview email for the event. I clicked on the link to RSVP and it took me to the organization’s website. The event was listed on their calendar, but when you clicked on the event, there wasn't a link to actually proceed with the registration process. I emailed the person in charge of registration and informed her that the email mislead me and I was unaware of how to sign up for the event. I sent this email on a Monday afternoon and received a response five business days later.
The person emailed me back on Friday and told me that I had to call to register to the event. Why was this not stated in the event email and why were links included to “RSVP” for the event? When I called I had to be transferred to someone else to register. To make matters even worse, I couldn't be transferred because their phones weren't working properly. She then gave me the direct number to call to reach the person with whom I would make the reservation.
What should have taken me no longer than five minutes, ended up taking five days and caused me an unnecessary headache.
The next event was a luncheon in which I had to RSVP and pay for on EventBrite. I again received an email to sign up for this particular event with a link to the luncheon on EventBrite. The link took me to the correct page but the date of the event was incorrect and was for last month’s luncheon. After looking over the page for a few minutes, I did find a drop down menu where you could select the correct date for the event. Once I selected the correct date, the date didn’t change on the receipt. This prompted me to write an email to the person in charge of the event and inform her of the error on my receipt. This was another email that I had to write that shouldn’t have been necessary when signing up for an event. The person quickly responded to my email stating that I prompted her to go to the EventBrite website and correct the error to eliminate confusion.
By this point, I was about fed up with the process that I had to go through to get registered for networking events, but when a friend I hadn’t seen in awhile sent me an invite to attend an event that she would be at, I couldn’t turn down the invite to reconnect with her. I downloaded the attached flyer and while it supplied information about the event, a time wasn’t listed. I emailed my friend back and she informed me about the time and told her to email her back if I was interested in attending. I emailed her back and told her I was interested in attending and she supplied me with an email address of the correct person to register with. I sent an email yesterday to the proper person and expressed my interest in registering for the event and asked for her to please supply me with the signup form. I sent this email to her over 24 hours ago and no response yet. The event is scheduled to begin 27 hours from now and it is still up in the air as to whether I will be attending the event or not.
If you are in charge of an event and you fail to make it easy and accessible for people to RVSP and pay for the event, don't be surprised when the seats are empty and you're toasting yourself!
**End of Lauren's Recent Experiences**
As you can see, an organization can be perceived by the ease, or in this case, the difficulty in which they make it to do business with them. I've personally had such experiences that I've shared in previous blog posts:
When Online Chat is Useless and Harms Customer Service - I'm Talking to You Bank of America
Communication is Key in Customer Service
If you're an organization that is relying upon the Internet to conduct business, make sure that you've selected the right technologies and invested in the proper resources to make it easy for you, but more importantly, easy for your customer.
|About the author
Mark Cenicola is the president and CEO of BannerView.com, developers of BannerOS, the software that helps companies turn their websites into powerful business tools. Mark is also the author of the book "The Banner Brand – Small Business Success Comes from a Banner Brand – Build it on a Budget." Read Mark's full biography. You can find him tweeting on Twitter and starring in videos for the company's YouTube channel.
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