Eventbrite is a very cost-effective way to handle event registration signups. By using Eventbrite it means you don't have to manually handle payment arrangements or disputes or refunds, and Eventbrite staff will happily support both you and your customers as necessary. When you have Eventbrite collect payment for you, it means you won't have to handle money at the door (unless you want to).
If your event has no cost to sign up, then your event registrations via Eventbrite are free. If you are having Eventbrite collect money for you, then they keep a small percentage as a service fee in addition to any credit-card-processing costs. You can choose to pass these fees on to your customers, split them 50/50, or absorb them yourself. Where possible, we encourage you to build those fees into the budget of your event, so that buyers see a single price and are more willing to pay. That said, most Toastmasters understand that there are costs associated with payment processing, and many don't mind helping pay those fees. You know your audience best.
The following instructions will guide you through the process of setting up some common Toastmasters events with Eventbrite.
We will start with a simple no-charge event like an Area Contest. Then we'll look at setting up a Club Officer Training event, where there is lots of information to collect from participants. And finally we'll look at a paid event like the District Conference.
Remember: The Eventbrite website has many tutorials and good documentation on how to do ALL of these things, and many more. If you're stuck, they offer free support by email (and maybe even LiveChat?) – just follow the links on their website to get the help you need.
What's important below is that you follow the standard naming conventions for your event titles, so that people around the world using Eventbrite can clearly tell from the name of the event if it applies to them because it mentions your District, Division, and Area.
Before you begin creating your event on Eventbrite, you will want to have the following information at hand:
- Eventbrite login: district email address for whomever is leading the event (ie: firstname.lastname@example.org ... contact email@example.com for help with this) to use for creating or logging in to your event's eventbrite account
- Banking details: if registrants are paying online, you'll need the bank account numbers for EFT deposit (or if collecting money via PayPal, then the paypal account's email address you're using for this event)
- name and time of each session at the event. Are any sessions specific to certain Officer Roles?
- seating capacity for each session
- price for registration
- if the event is free-to-register-but-pay-cash-at-the-door, you'll want to say so in the event description
- if it is to be paid online at registration time, decide whether the Eventbrite fee will be shared 50/50 with the registrant, or passed on 100% to the registrant, or deducted from the price paid (more on this later in this document)
- any questions you want to ask each registrant online when they register (ie: their club name+number, their officer role, do they want to volunteer to help, special needs, etc)
Initial Eventbrite Setup
Go to eventbrite.ca/signup and create an account for your club. We suggest using the district-provided district-officer email address (ie: an email address that any club executive person can access, and whose password can be handed over to future executives to manage their own activities in the future). Eventbrite will ask you for an email address and password, and you'll need to click a Confirmation link in the email they send you in order to activate the account.
This account is currently just like any other "attendee" account, until you Create An Event ... which we'll do next:
Create My Event
Go to https://www.eventbrite.ca/create/ (if you're not already logged in, it will prompt you) or click the "Create Event" button on the top right of the Eventbrite website page.
We recommend that the Event Title follow a consistent naming pattern across all of Toastmasters. This makes it easy for visitors to find your event and to ensure they're clicking on the *correct* event worldwide!
The suggested name of your event should follow this pattern:
"Toastmasters District 86 Division XX Area YY Name-Of-Event"
- Toastmasters District 86 Division W Area 61 Humorous and Table Topics Speech Contest
- Toastmasters District 86 Club Officer Training
- Toastmasters District 86 Division S International Speech Contest
- Toastmasters District 86 Spring Conference 2018 at Delta Meadowvale Mississauga
This is the street address where the event will be held. Visitors will be able to use this with Google Maps to find the event.
Date and Time
Supply the date and time of the event.
NOTE: Any payments collected by Eventbrite will be sent to your bank account 3-4 days after the final date of your event, based on the date you enter here.
Suggest you use an authorized Toastmasters logo here.
Be as detailed as possible about what this event involves. If it doesn't contain relevant information then people won't sign up!!! Give them everything they need to know. Make sure it's EASY TO READ, not cluttered, and be enthusiastic!
Pictures improve registrations! So consider including some enthusiastic colourful relevant pictures in your description!
Facebook and Twitter
If you wish the event registration page to include links to Facebook and Twitter so that people will be pestered to login to Facebook to see which of their friends have said they're coming, you may check this box. Keep in mind that this does clutter the page and some people find it off-putting. Make your choice based on the demographic of the people you expect to attend -- if most of them are Facebook users and actively promoting their Toastmasters participation on their Facebook activity, then maybe you might want this enabled. If they're not, then don't.
This is where you specify what kind of ticket your participants will buy.
Free = Free
Paid = They will be charged a registration fee, and will need to provide a credit card to pay (or optionally check/cash at the door). You will pay service charges for all paid tickets sold through Eventbrite.
Donation = Customer decides how much to pay. This is ideal for a fundraiser, but is not common for Toastmasters events.
You can mix and match these.
It is common to have an Early Bird paid registration for a certain price, available only between certain dates or for a certain number of tickets sold. And then the next level registration, at a higher price, can show up for late registrations.
Area/Division Contests often use Eventbrite merely to manage seating, and not for payment collection. So, in Eventbrite, choose Free Ticket, and make the ticket description say something like "Pay $5 at the door - cash/cheque". If there is limited seating capacity at the venue, enter how many total seats Eventbrite is allowed to sell. In this case, you'd still need to have a team of people "at the door" to collect the actual payments (cash/cheque) and issue receipts, and check names off against the Eventbrite attendee registration list.
Club Officer Trainings might charge $15 and pass on the fees to participants, thus each participant pays $16.82 (based on Eventbrite Canada's rates in May 2014, subject to change per Eventbrite's policies). In this case, you'd select "Paid Ticket", enter the price of $15.00, choose to "pass fees on", and supply the total number of seats available at this price.
A District Conference might want to charge $279 for Early Bird registrations, available until 2 months before the conference date, and then have the Early Bird option disabled and a "Regular Price Admission" option at $299. Additionally, other options could be added such as $50 for International Speech Contest, etc.
Advanced Tips About Tickets
TIP ABOUT FREE EVENTS: When (or after) you create your tickets, if you want to change the description of what the registrant is buying, or if you want to add extra descriptive text (for example if your ticket is "free" online but you want them to pay-at-the-door), it is recommended to name your ticket "Free to register; Please bring your $10 to pay-at-the-door." ... and then maybe add additional descriptive text below the ticket if needed. To do this during event-creation, simply name the ticket as desired, and add description by clicking on the "gear" icon next to the ticket you're creating. To make changes after-the-fact, simply visit the "Edit" page, and scroll down to the Tickets section and make the desired changes. Once finished, click "Save", and then click "View" to make sure it looks the way you want when people are attempting to sign up.
You normally want your event public so everybody can find it online easily! Plus you might even get brand new non-toastmasters who show up and join your club because they love the event so much!
Some of the choices here relevant to common Toastmasters events include "Class/Training/Workshop" or "Meeting or Networking Event" or "Seminar or Talk". Pick whatever suits your event best.
Here you might choose something like "Community and Culture" or "Business and Professional"
Unless you have a very small number of seats/tickets available, you may wish to leave this box unchecked. If you think displaying the number of tickets will actually encourage *more* people to sign up, then go ahead and check this box.
Okay, that's the basics. At the bottom of this page, simply click "Make Your Event Live", and your event will be available for all to see, immediately!
Changing the Appearance Of Your Event Page
Eventbrite lets you choose from several colour themes, and also display a list of Attendees (who have signed up using Eventbrite) and possibly see which of their Facebook friends are attending.
You can control these in the "Design" pane of your event's configuration settings.
To customize your event, click the "Design" tab when in Edit mode. If you don't see the Design tab, then use the menu on the page to go to "My Events", then click the "Edit" link next to your event. This will put you into Edit mode, where you'll see a "Design" tab near the top left of the page.
Choose a Theme
While there are several theme choices available, most Toastmasters clubs often find that the default theme is fine. There are a couple other pre-defined themes that are somewhat close to the Toastmasters colours, so you might choose one of those. The choice is yours. Just be sure to choose something that's visually appealing to the majority of people who you expect to attend your event.
If this box is checked, then a list of all people who have registered will be shown publicly on the event registration page. Customers won't have the option of excluding themselves from this list. The benefit of showing the attendees list is that it allows others to see if their friends are going, and then they'll be more likely to attend themselves!
If you click the Edit button beside this option, you have the option of controlling "which" information is displayed, such as limiting it to First Name and maybe also Club Name (if you add Club Name as a custom data field, which we'll discuss later).
Allow visitors to see which of their Facebook friends are going
If you check this box, and if visitors are logged in to Facebook, then any already-registered persons who also use Facebook will show up and people will be able to see if their friends are also attending. This may encourage them to sign up also.
The down side to this option is that the page gets really cluttered really quickly. You can turn the option on/off later if you like.
Click the "Save" button at the top right of the screen to save your changes.
Refining Registration Choices
Perhaps you want to collect additional information from your attendees? Maybe you want to know which club they're from? Or what Executive Role they hold (for Club Officer Training events)? Or what meal preferences they have (for Conferences)?
You can add these extra fields by customizing your event.
To customize your event, click the "Manage" tab when in Edit mode. If you don't see the Manage tab, then use the menu on the page to go to "My Events", then click the "Manage" link next to your event.
Event Type & Language
Before we get into Custom Fields, let's first look at the Event Type. Click on the "Event Type & Language" link in the left menu.
By default, Eventbrite assigns new events as "Ticketed Events". But most Toastmasters events are probably better served by being called a "Registration Event". Make the adjustment you desire here, and click the large "Save Changes" button at the bottom of the page (you'll need to scroll down to see it).
Custom Fields on the Order Form
On the "Manage" screen, the top of the left menu has an "Order Form" link. Click that.
Now you'll see a powerful form which lets you control which information will be collected from each registrant. You can control which ones will "appear" (the "include" column of checkboxes) and which will also be "required" (must supply before they can submit their registration).
If you only need their name and email and billing address, then keep the default of "Collect only basic information".
But if you need more information OR if you want to allow Betty to buy 4 tickets AND specify WHO those tickets are for, then you'll need to choose "Collect information below for each attendee".
And then you can also add additional questions by clicking the "Add another question" button.
Adding "Club Name"
Click "Add another question" and fill in the details:
Question: "Club Name" (this is the text that will display as the question they will answer)
Type: Text (Text means they can type in their answer. Checkboxes and Radio Buttons give them multiple-choice options, which we'll deal with in other sections below)
- "Show this question for specific ticket types". Leave this unchecked in this case. This allows you to only ask the question if they have selected a certain kind of ticket (ie: Early Bird vs a Free ticket)
- "Show the attendee answer to this question on the order confirmation" -- This just shows them what they selected. Useful to them for the sake of remembering the choices they made.
Adding Executive Role Pulldown Choice
Click "Add another question" and fill in the details:
Question: "Club Executive Role"
Click "Disable Choice Limit"
2. VP Education
(Click +Add another choice to add more options)
Conditional Questions: "Surface a secondary question based on answers to this question". In the case of Club Executive Role, you can leave this box unchecked. But if you needed to ask a specific additional question if they chose "President", you would check this box and follow the instructions.
Check the box next to "Show the attendee answer on the order confirmation"
Adding Workshop Choices
Click "Add additional question"
Question: "Choose your workshops"
2. Judges Training
3. Your Body Speaks
4. Effective Evaluation
5. Membership Campaigns
Check the box next to "Show the attendee answer on the order confirmation"
Finding Out Who Registered, and Handling Check-Ins at the Event
Naturally you'll want a list of who has registered.
First, you'll get an email from Eventbrite every time someone completes the registration form, including their registration details.
Printable Guest List
Login to Eventbrite, click My Events, click "Manage" next to your event. The left menu has a "Manage Attendees" section at the bottom. Choose "Guest List". From this page you can download a printable PDF file.
Attendee Add - Manual Entry
You can manually add attendees to your event using the "Attendee Add" option under Manage Attendees. There is no charge for manually adding attendees.
You can print name tags from this screen if you like.
You can do live check-in using an iPhone or Android device with the Eventbrite Event App. This app gives you a live list of registrants and lets you use your phone to scan the barcode on their printed receipt, or to look up their name on-screen and "check" them in in real time. You can have several people logged in to process check-ins this way and never allow duplicate checkins. Using this option requires that your phone have a live internet connection, and will use up data on your data plan.
While using technology this way may seem cool, be sure to use it only if it doesn't create problems with other check-in activities happening at your event, and doesn't cause frustration with other registration staff. Don't complicate your event needlessly!
Of course, if you're collecting money for registrations, you want to get paid, right?!
For this, you'll need to decide if you're going to ONLY offer "PayPal" as a payment choice, or if you'll allow customers to pay by credit card without going through PayPal to do that.
Setting Up Payment Options
Go to your My Events page, click on Manage, and choose Select Payment Options.
Most of the information on this screen is self-explanatory. The following information helps clarify some details which may not be immediately obvious. Contact Eventbrite Support for any further clarification you might want.
If you use PayPal, you'll need to provide Eventbrite with your PayPal account email address. And of course, this requires that you or your club has a PayPal account which can be used for events posted with this Eventbrite account.
The plus-side of using PayPal is that all registrations are paid to you immediately (minus any Eventbrite fees).
Credit Card via Eventbrite Payment Processing
If you simply intend to use Eventbrite's credit-card-processing service, you'll need to supply your club's bank account information. You'll need the Name on the bank account, the Bank Transit number (all 5 digits), Institution Number (3 digits), and Account Number. You can get this from the bank teller. Some banks have odd transit numbers for EFT that differ from what you see on a cheque.
The down-side to using Eventbrite Payment Processing is that Eventbrite holds onto all your funds until 3 days after the event date (this is to allow them to handle any disputes/refunds, and give them some time to do their paperwork processing). And then they submit an EFT transfer to your bank. So you'll usually see the money 5 business days after the event finishes.
If you need Eventbrite to pay you some of that money "in advance" (before the event starts), you can contact their support department and ask to make special arrangements to use their "Advanced Payout" option, where they send you up to 75% of the collected funds twice each month in advance of the event. So, it's worth talking to them if you need some of the registration funds to help pay for event costs before the event starts. Contact them directly to make special arrangements.
Eventbrite lets you enable additional payment methods, including Cheque, Pay-At-Door, and Invoice. You will have to pay any Eventbrite fees associated with registrations made online using these options.
Publicizing Your Event
There are several ways to publish your event so your target audience can find it:
- Earlier we mentioned the importance of making the event be set as a "listed public event" so that it shows up in everyone's local Eventbrite events list /news feed. Do that.
- Set a "Friendly Link" -- under the event's "Manage" tab, in "Your Event URL" you have the option of providing a shortened event URL. We recommend using something short for easy promotion in printed materials ... like d86-tli-spring2015.eventbrite.ca ... and then save it.
Then you can copy that link for use in promotional materials such as fliers and emails and website links.
- Get your District Officer (usually area or division governor, etc) to update the District Website Calendar by adding the dates and the Eventbrite event link to the calendar. Test it to make sure it's correct, by visiting the District website Calendar/Events/Contest pages.
- If your club uses social media, then include your event registration link when you make an announcement about your event there.
- Your club VP Public Relations may have additional ways they wish to promote your events. Be sure they have the event link.
- If you elect to send emails, FIRST BE VERY SURE THAT YOU HAVE SPECIFIC PERMISSION FROM ALL RECIPIENTS BEFORE SENDING AN EMAIL BLAST. Be sure you're not breaking any laws by sending mass emails. Be sure you are CASL compliant in all your correspondence.
- Don't forget to put the link on your club's own website!
At The Door
To handle check-ins at the door, you'll want a list of who's registered. Please see the section above entitled "Finding Out Who Registered" for guidance on getting a list of paid registrants and on using technology tools to handle check-ins at the door, including scanning receipts with barcodes using your mobile phone, or using tablets to see an electronic list and checking them off.
Advanced Setup: Sharing Access To Event Management
It's easy to allow other people to have varying kinds of access to your event. You might want to allow things like:
- allow others to get confirmation emails of new registrations
- allow others to edit the event details
- allow others to see the list of people who have registered, in order to do site-planning or manage meal prep with the caterer, etc.
To enable this, simply go into your My Account settings, under Multi-User Access, and set it up there. You can control access at every level, separately for each event.