8 Strategies to Reduce Event Attrition and Non-Attendance

June 1, 2022

Home - Blog - 8 Strategies to Reduce Event Attrition and Non-Attendance

Today, we’re going to share some of our favorite strategies to reduce your event attrition rate. It’s a phrase that strikes fear into the heart of many event planners. Event attrition rate is an industry phrase that refers to the percentage of people who register to attend an event but don’t show up.

In other words, this is an article on how to increase event attendance. And besides, it’s nothing to be afraid of! The fact that people are registering means you’re doing something right. Now the goal is to finish the job off and ensure those RSVPs turn into concrete event attendees.

And, of course, the best way to go about your planning is to team up with a quality event technology partner. And to that, we say, stay on top of event attendance with Stova.

1. Be Careful When Choosing Dates

Learning how to increase event attendance can start with simple things like taking care to choose the right date.

So for starters, make sure you avoid major holidays, events, and observances. Otherwise, it’s just competition that will have a dent in your event attendance.

After that, it becomes more of a question of common sense. You need to weigh up broader factors like the season: for example, winter weather could influence people to stay at home; alternatively, if it’s high summer, then child care could be an issue.

As for the time of the week, the general consensus if you want to reduce the event attrition rate is to hold your event at the start or the end of the week to maximize attendance (think Monday or Saturday).

2. Pick an Outstanding Venue

If there’s one thing we all do, it’s judge a book by its cover. Sure, the content of your event, the speakers, and the catering, it all matters. But a handsome venue is also part of the experience. In short, if you book an outstanding venue, then you will increase your event attendance.

There’s a whole load of things that go into making a venue outstanding. Here are some of the crucial elements to look out for:

  • Style
  • Views
  • Hip area locations
  • Easy access by public transport
  • Breakout rooms
  • Accessible parking

So, in short, choosing an enigmatic venue will tackle your event attrition rate. So take care, and pick a location that will lure in the masses!

3. Send Reminders

A core part of reducing your event attrition rate is to send reminders to your registrants. We’re all busy people with a lot going on, so a gentle reminder can be crucial.

There is more than one way to do this, and it doesn’t take a whole load of effort. The most popular method is the classic ‘reminder email.‘ Even a simple “looking forward to seeing you” can make a difference and set a warm tone between your brand and the attendee.

Another option is to install a ‘Add to Calendar’ button to your event ticketing process. It makes it nice and straightforward for your guests and negates the need to send a reminder at all!

And finally, if you want to go beyond the call of duty, why not pick up the phone and indulge in the old-fashioned act of making a call. It’s a classy touch that will make your guest feel like a VIP.

4. Have a Waitlist

If there’s one thing you need to incorporate into your event ticketing, it’s a waiting list. Say if your event is sold out, a curious individual could stumble on your event and become disheartened that it’s sold out.

As it is, they’d click off your event page, and you’d lose them forever. However, adding a “join waiting list” button will meaningfully increase your event attendance.

Because the sad fact is that registrants will drop out from attending. When you add a waiting list, you refuse to accept that statistic.

One of the neat tricks of this strategy is that it makes your event seem more desirable, which can only ever help to solve any event attrition rate problem!  

5. Capitalize on FOMO

The fear of missing out is real. Think about the things you’ve gone to because you’ve been anxious about missing something special.

If you can create an event that is unmissable, and convey that in your marketing, you will increase your event attendance. It’s as simple as that.

Creating an aura of FOMO is a guaranteed way to reduce the event attrition rate. A vital component of this is implementing creative marketing ideas. In which you need to hammer home key benefits your event offers, such as free giveaways, captivating content, sales opportunities, and fun experiences.

6. Make Your Event Exclusive

It’s a fascinating phenomenon in the human imagination. Even as toddlers, if we’re told we can’t have something, we want it more; if we think we can have something when we want, at the click of our fingers, we couldn’t care less.

This is something we all experience. It’s nothing to be ashamed of. This psychological phenomenon has affected our industry like every other: so yes, a classic event ticketing strategy is to sell events as exclusive opportunities.

The easiest way to do this is to have an intrinsically in-demand and exclusive event. You can manufacture these conditions with some strategic event planning tricks even if you don’t. You can increase ticket prices, limit the attendance, and so on.

And now, here’s the worst secret in sales history: you don’t have to have an exclusive product to sell it as such. A bit of pageantry, creativity, and confident marketing can do the trick very effectively!

7. Allow For Cancellations

Cancellations are clearly not ideal. However, event planners should see them as opportunities for someone else to attend.

If you make it easy for someone to cancel, it creates a new opening instead of resulting in a no-show. From the jaws of defeat, you can reduce your event attrition rate!

You can even go as far as making tickets transferable to a different event. This motivates people to cancel. If there’s no incentive to go out of their way to cancel their registration, they’ll just not show up.

8. Know Your Target Audience

Knowing your target audience is an essential element in learning how to increase event attendance.

There are two different methods for using knowledge of your target audience to increase your attendance.

  1. You have a target audience you want to reach, and you shape your event to appeal to what they want. So, for example, if your target audience wants to get deeper insights into converting sales, you could offer a guest speaker or a workshop that will give insights on that topic.
  2. You have an event that’s ready to go, and you target people it would appeal to. So, for example, if your event is free, you could target people who might not usually be invited to events or who can’t usually afford to attend corporate events.

To learn more about how to understand your target audience, this article is really handy!


So there you have it, our favorite strategies to reduce your event attrition rate. We hope you’ve found some actionable tips to try out at your next event.

While you’re here, make sure to request a Stova demo. We can help with any aspect you like, from a full-service package to help with specific event goals. In this case, we offer superb event ticketing solutions to help limit event attitrion.

Ready to learn more?

Whether your event is virtual, hybrid, or in-person, enhance your attendee’s journey with an event ecosystem built for your audience. Ready to walk through Stova's event technology solutions? Schedule some time with us today.