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Tiz Gambacorta Interviews Nick James From Seriously Fun Business

Growth and revolution in strategy have indeed been alongside any line of business. And one of the strategies that you can use as you start your business, is by hosting live events.


Let me share the meaningful thoughts about hosting live events from Nick James as he shared his story on how hosting events made a significant difference to his business.

Nick James got into hosting events from a very young age. He has always been around events as he worked for an events company. That was his first proper job in sales. Then, he started a business doing one-to-one work, consulting with clients, selling time for money, which was fine for a time until he realized that he hit the ceiling and that model is a little bit flawed, hence when he started getting into his own events. Of course, as soon as he started running his own events, his profile increased. He attracted more clients towards him. He also had a better capacity to serve more people at a time and generate larger income from my business.

If asked, if he would recommend to include events right away as part of their sales and marketing strategy, he thinks that it depends largely what business you're in. He believes that if you're the only person in your business that can do all the selling, all the marketing, the delivery, then you're going to reach a point where you reach maximum capacity and the business can't continue to grow.

Run your own events. Build credibility and authority.

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He thinks that one should look to build a one-to-many solution into their business plan. You might be just starting out, you look to do events to rapidly build your credibility and authority, but in most cases, when you're starting a business, go out and get some customer. 

Go out and get some clients and then from there, you might look to scale by using a one-to-many strategy like small workshops.

In his first event, they had eight people in the room in 2009. According to Nick, it doesn't need to be hundreds or thousands of people in the room in order to have a successful and profitable event. He thinks everyone has to start somewhere.

His advice is to start small, grow gradually, and scale it, rather than trying to do your first event with a thousand people in the room as it's highly risky. They've been talking at their boot camp about the financial model of really successful events and he thinks if you try and do too much too soon, then it's highly risky and you could end up losing your shirt if you're not careful.

The smartest moves to kick start your business... Start small, Grow gradually, Scale it.

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Well, that is a valid one, I would say. Essentially, a smarter move is, if you're just getting started, start small, get some customers through the door, validate the concept, and then maybe consider doing small events. Now, if you have an established business, maybe you've got a small sales team, or you're doing the sales yourself. How can you leverage events?

Leverage events to bring in more customers and scale your business.

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He thinks with most businesses, let's say you've got an established business with a sales team. The one thing that your sales team are going to be is on your case is about getting more leads and better quality leads. So, for him, events are great front-end strategy to bring leads in. 

If somebody registers for a one-day free event, for example, and they attend that free event, even if they don't buy, they're an extremely warm lead. It's not a cold call, it's not someone that's got no interest. Even if they registered for the event and didn't even attend it, it's still a warm lead because they said yeah, "I wanna spend a day, a few hours, a couple of days, whatever it is, learning from you at this event." Even if they didn't show up, that's still a warmer lead than just handing out cold calls, which salespeople hate doing. You can also consider events as a front-end strategy to warm people up.

When we talk about events, it could be online or offline events. Of course, most people think about live workshops in person, but you can test out with a live online event like a webinar or online training, which is a great way to get an influx of leads. You're usually not sitting down analyzing strategies that you can then convert into customers after the fact.

So, is it fair to say that events, by themselves, have an element of scarcity and uniqueness as pretty much any man and his dog can set up a website, but a lot fewer people actually do events?

Nick believes so as most businesses have a website of some description. Not all, but most. Few businesses run events.

He says the events market now, as we sit here today, is far most saturated then it was maybe five or ten years ago, and it's getting more and more competitive. That's why you need to make sure that if you're going to run an event, it should truly stand out and unique and different.

Running an event should be something genuinely unique and should truly stand out.

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If you run an event, give people something they can't get anywhere else.

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You're doing things that have never done before. It's not just another business growth event. It's not just another personal development event. It's something that genuinely is unique, different and is going to give somebody something they can't get anywhere else.

There are also some business models that events would not be fit for. However, he thinks you'd be surprised at how wide the application of an event model can be. If you think about it, anyone that works B2C, like gyms stuff, instead of doing one-to-one personal training, or even group personal training, which technically is an event, they do live events to do education first. And then they sell into showing the client's how you implement by working with us either as PT clients, one-to-one or in groups, so using events there for B2C businesses.

Most of their clients are B2B in a service-based business. Those that are working with corporate can do events outside as public events. They can do events inside the corporate, in-house training. He doesn't think there are many businesses that you can't find an event model because still 100% any business needs to make sales, and it's better to leverage if your part as the business owner is to make sales to multiple people all at once than have to go and meet with every single potential client to get them on board. Even then, if it's just sale function, if you just made your sales function wider reach and more effective then it's going to work.

With my interview with Nick, I’ve also been fortunate to know the three things that he wished he had known before getting started in the events business? Let me share it to you down below.

1. He wished somebody had taught him how to run the financials of a business. He studied business studies in university and quite frankly learned how to go and work for a big company. He wishes somebody would have taught him the power of knowing the numbers and being able to run a business financially. That would allow him to scale a lot quicker.

2. He wishes somebody would've taught him how to sell. He was very fortunate that his first mentor, Andy Harrington took him under his wing and trained him in sales. Nick used to work for Andy Harrington's company when he started out. He thinks one skill is the most important skill you can learn as a business owner because that's what's going to get you started, the ability to have a conversation with somebody and get them over the line, get them closed, get them to say yes and give you money. 

3. What he probably didn't realize at the time, when he started ten years ago, was how big things could get when you get those first two things right, over a prolonged period. Tony Robbins has this great phrase which is that "Most people dramatically overestimate what they can achieve in a year, but underestimate what they can achieve in 10". Nick thinks he was one of those. He was feeling the first year he is going to make £100,000 in the first year and he got nowhere near that. He could never have imagined that ten years later.

Researching and investing on strategies are indeed a vital part of any kind of business and hosting an event can truly help you scale your business as businesses are built on strong relationships that could flow when you host live events. You can build credibility and authority to your target market, your brand will have more visibility, you can share your valuable content and maximize the potential of your business.

Tiz Gambacorta

Nicknamed Europe's fastest growing digital nomad entrepreneur, featured in the NY Times, Wall Street Journal & USA Today..