Event descriptions are more than just information about your events.
Generally the ‘last stop’ on a prospect’s journey to event registration, your event descriptions can make (or break) a prospect’s decision to attend. Excellent event descriptions are written to not only inform an audience, but to make them take action by registering.
With space for only a few hundred words, it’s a big challenge to successfully inform and compel action. Online audiences have little attention to spare and plenty of pings, notifications, icons, and headlines competing for their share. Cutting through the noise to capture and convert attention into registrations takes time and energy, but with the help of 5 simple copywriting principles, we can see that the work is relatively straightforward.
So here they are!
1. Make it skimmable
Online, our attention spans are short. Extensive copy, complicated descriptions, long paragraphs – sometimes long words can make the ‘back’ button more attractive than ‘register’.
On the other hand – copy that cuts out unnecessary information – directly, clearly, and concisely states important information is refreshing. When readers don’t have to work to consume the information they’re looking for, they show their appreciation by staying on-page, signing up for your emails, and registering for your event.
So how do you write skimmable content? Here are some tips:
Focus on your headlines
Though they’re much shorter, the best copywriters spend considerably more time writing headlines than body copy. As a general rule, 80% of your message should be understood by reading headlines alone. If the message headlines deliver is compelling, readers will turn to the body copy. So long as your body copy doesn’t undermine that sense of excitement, they’ll register!
Speak straight and simple
Forget jargon. Minimize syllables. Cut out extra words. Anything you can do to simplify your copy will have a positive impact on conversions.
One helpful tool to eliminate ‘noise’ from your writing and speak impactfully to diverse audiences is the free Hemingway App. Programmed to evaluate content according to the writing principles of the great Ernest Hemingway, this free tool will help you transform your event descriptions into high-converting, professional level copy.
2. Get to the goods
Readers should not have to work to discover why they should attend your event. Your event description copy should be doing that work for them.
If readers even have to scroll before discovering copy that makes them excited about your event, they’re working too much, and you’re sacrificing potential registrants.
Your first priority when writing an effective event description is a simple one. Tell readers what they want to know.
In the first 15 seconds of landing on your event page, are you confident that your copy answers the question “Why should I attend?”, and leaves a reader excited?
Do readers have to do anything at all to discover the message that compels them to attend? If they have to scroll, interpret copy, learn new words, talk to a colleague, etc. they’ve got to put in work to attend your event, and thus are less likely to.
Easy changes like bringing important points higher on-page, eliminating unnecessary content, simplifying language, and emphasizing positive/exciting language add impact to your value propositions and make them stand out!
3. Reduce anxiety
Adding to the positive reasons a reader should attend your event is one half of the equation. The other has to do with reducing the negative reasons preventing them from doing so.
This part of writing your event description is arguably more important as a compelled and highly excited reader can still fail to register for your event if important factors are not addressed.
Some of these are difficult to control, like price. Exclusive events are desired by many, but attended by few. Short of lowering the price, there’s not much one can do to reduce a reader’s concern about price.
But what about something like parking or accommodations? Readers might be excited about your event, but concerned about the logistics of attending. Use page copy to help address concerns like this, and by lowering the barriers to registration, you’ll improve your conversion rate.
Don’t have the room to address each concern you think might prevent members of your audience from attending? Keep your page clean and simple by using page copy to link readers to other places they can find the info they’re looking for.
4. Compel action
If you’ve done a good job of increasing excitement and reducing anxiety, the final task is to close the deal by compelling a reader to fill out your registration form.
One reliable way to do this is to leverage a sense of FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). An excited reader, with their anxieties reduced/eliminated, still might not click ‘register’ as deciding to register and actually registering are not the same thing.
After all, one can register tomorrow, or the next day, or the day after that. If there’s no reason to register now, why not do it later? Putting event registration onto a ‘to-do’ list demonstrates great intention, but as to-do lists get longer, registration can easily lose priority – and eventually be forgotten.
Something as simple as a line of copy mentioning indicating that ‘tickets sell fast, so get yours now’ can be enough to successfully translate intention into action. But don’t limit yourself to just that. Emphasizing limited-time pricing, promotions, and deals are powerful ways to fill your copy with the sense of urgency required to convert readers into registrants.
5. Change it up
When you’re successfully able to inspire interest in a reader, but unable to generate action, sometimes a bit of patience and a few strategic changes to copy are all it takes to capture elusive conversions.
As you approach the end of your event registration period, remember that every conversion your copy makes removes a person from your audience.
Your copy might be extremely effective, but only at converting those it has already converted. As these individuals are no longer a part of your audience, it’s important to think about who’s left, and what might be stopping them from signing up.
With this in mind, refining your event description copy to the needs, wants, and expectations of this smaller audience is a great way to capture prospects that were previously undecided or uncertain.
Offering different value propositions might do a better job of compelling these individuals to action. Addressing different anxieties might more effectively reduce their hesitation. Doubling-down on the emphasis of your ‘Register now’ button could give your event the boost it needs!
Write like a pro
The only thing that separates your writing from that of a seasoned professional is a few principles and a lot of practice.
We’ve given you a few principles you can use to immediately increase the impact of your event description copy. Now we hope you’ll put them into practice, and enjoy the registrations that follow!