If you are a retreat leader then you know the value of an in-person retreat. Spending time with your clients face-to-face in a setting where they are unplugged from the daily distractions of life can certainly equal magical, momental shifts in your retreat participants lives and businesses. However, if you are unable to host a live retreat right now you can still serve your community by hosting a virtual retreat. If this sounds overwhelming, fear not. Here are 5 simple tips of how to make sure your virtual retreat is an amazing experience for all involved.


Tip #1 - CREATE CONTENT. Create a simple, easy-to-follow retreat workbook for your participants to journal, take notes or complete self-guided exercises. NOTE: Keep it simple. It can be a one-page PDF document. What knowledge do you want them to take away?


Tip #2 - SEND AN ENGAGING WELCOME EMAIL. Get them excited about participating and share what to expect next and how to fully participate in the retreat. Include any technology instructions with links, PDF's of workbook and instructions for how to get the best experience (ex: make sure you are in a quiet, distraction-free location with headphones.) out of the retreat.


Tip #3 - CREATE AN EXPERIENTIAL, RESULTS FOCUSED AGENDA. If it is your first virtual retreat I recommend you keep your agenda to one-day, around 4 hours. A virtual retreat can follow the same agenda as a live retreat with a few tweaks to interactive, hands-on group activities. For example, if you normally open your live retreat with a meditation session you can duplicate that in a virtual retreat. Build in opportunities for sharing, group chats, self-guided exercises and breaks. And be prepared to be flexible. A topic may show up for many of your participants and you may decide to spend more time discussing it because it will support your participants in breaking through to a desired outcome.


Tip #4 - KNOW YOUR LOGISTICS. There are many platforms available for event registration, hosting virtual events and receiving payment. Keep it simple. Visit my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/katsanfordretreats for a list of resources.


Tip #5 - SPREAD THE WORD. In other words, market your retreat. Share your event invitation via your email list and social media channels and include links to register. Look for places where you can be featured as a guest speaker on another expert's upcoming webinar/virtual event. Build excitement by sharing tips via Instagram TV or Facebook LIVE. What can you do to build credibility and community with your online audience who might also be potential retreat participants? Who are your RAVING FANS that would you spread the word in exchange for you doing the same or a small Brand Ambassador commission or chance to attend your retreat for free or a discount?


And finally, pick a date and get started! The time is now...don't wait until you have more knowledge, more clients. If you need support please reach out to me at kat@katsanford.com.


#virtualretreats, #katsanfordretreats #retreatstraveltransformation #virtualevents


Updated: Oct 27, 2018

AMANGIRI

Located in southern Utah this 5-star resort features 34 suites tucked into the mountains. Each suite has an outdoor lounge and fireplace with amazing desert views. Some suites feature a private pool or roof terrace. And if you want the ultimate in privacy and luxury, you can book the four-bedroom Mesa Home that includes a 50-foot infinity pool. Experiences include spa treatments at the Aman Spa, culinary experiences, hiking, hot air balloon rides, kayaking, horseback riding in nearby Lake Powell and Navajo cultural tours.

www.aman.com/resorts/amangiri



MIRAVAL AUSTIN

Located in the heart of the Texas Hill Country outside Austin, this all-inclusive retreat features 117 rooms and suites. There is a well-rounded offering of daily group and private activities including fitness classes, hiking, biking, horseback riding, farm-to-table culinary experiences, meditation and water sports. For a unique spa experience check out the Energy & Eastern services like the Aqua Zen and Chi Nei Tsang, a traditional Chinese abdominal massage and guided breathwork treatment.

www.miravalaustin.com


MII AMO

Located in Sedona, Arizona and surrounded by the red rocks of Boynton Canyon this 16-suite all-inclusive resort recently received the Travel & Leisure World’s Best Award in 2018 for the #1 Domestic Destination Spa. Mii Amo has a little bit of everything for everyone including hiking, mountain biking, beading, stargazing, juicing classes, gourd decorating and watercolor painting classes. If you are looking for a wellness experience they can create a custom experience for you or your group. Experiences include guided vortex walks, chanting, meditation walks in the Labyrinth and Native American inspired spa therapies.

www.miiamo.com



HOTEL SAN CRISTOBAL

Located in Todos Santos, Mexico on the southwestern edge of the Baja peninsula (2 hours north of Cabo San Lucas). This laid-back, luxury beachfront hotel features 32 rooms & suites, a pool and farm-to-table restaurant Benno. For private events check out La Capilla, the ceremony hall (perfect for an intimate wedding or vow renewal ceremony).


A perfect spot to watch the whales migrate and the fishermen launch their panga boats from the beach. Experiences include weekly salsa lessons, beach bonfires and yoga.

www.sancristobalbaja.com


AEGIALIS HOTEL & SPA

Located on the island of Amorgos, this hotel features a variety of rooms and suites, a restaurant and two pools. With six yoga shalas this the perfect spot for a yoga retreat. The hotel offers cooking lessons, Greek nights, herbal tours and organic gardening and can arrange boat tours, hiking, diving, kayaking and trips to the beach. Amorgos is accessible by boat via Athens, Naxos or Mykonos.

www.amorgos-aegialis.com



Updated: Aug 30, 2018

One of the biggest challenges I hear from my clients is "Kat, how do I make my retreat profitable?" Great question! In my opinion all retreats can and should be profitable or you might as well stay home and host a virtual mastermind. There are several strategies that go into making your retreats profitable. Today I want to share the first strategy which is to CREATE a RETREAT BUDGET…and make sure to include these seven items:


1. Lodging: When I work with my clients this is the first item that we factor into the retreat budget. Lodging costs are going to be your biggest retreat expense. Your resort or retreat center will provide a quote for either a per room/night cost or a per person/night cost. Remember to budget for additional charges like hotel occupancy tax, sales tax, resort fees, etc.

2. Ground Transportation: There are lots of great options to provide ground transportation for your retreat attendees and it is a nice touch that creates an all-inclusive experience. In addition to booking a shuttle bus or sedan service, rideshare services like Uber or Lyft allow you to offer event codes in most major cities (great for an urban retreat). If you are providing ground transportation make sure to budget for group excursions in addition to airport transfers.


3. Food & Beverage: Resorts require a food and beverage minimum for group bookings. Make sure you know this amount and that you request the banquet menus so you have an idea of the average cost for meals. Even if you choose an all-inclusive plan make sure you know the daily rate per person is for meals and if that is in addition to the lodging costs. In addition, make sure to include sales tax and service charges in your budget.


4. Excursions: Excursions can vary from affordable to extravagant with options such as guided hikes, to cooking classes or surf lessons. Excursions are a great way to enhance a retreat experience. Think about what excursions you want to host during your retreat so you can include a per person cost in the retreat budget.

Tip: Remember to budget in 10-15% of the total cost for tips and gratuity


5. Gifts & Giveaways: Think about the special touches you want to create during your retreat. Do you want to send your retreat attendees a beautiful tote bag before the retreat? Or have a special gift waiting for them in their room upon arrival? In addition to the price of the gift, please budget for shipping or a nominal hotel charge for a room drop fee.


6. Professional Service Fees: Who do you need to hire to help you produce a successful retreat? Do you need to pay your team to plan and attend the retreat? Do you need to hire a retreat planner or retreat marketing strategist? Either way negotiate a flat fee vs. an hourly rate for any professional services. That way you know exactly what the cost of this line item is and there are no surprises.


7. Marketing: Having a retreat marketing plan is a MUST. Unless you have a community that is standing by ready to buy a retreat ticket or your retreat is part of a coaching bundle then you will have to market your retreat. The good news is that you can successfully market without having to invest your life savings. However, you will need to invest marketing dollars to spread the word about your retreat. I help my clients develop custom retreat marketing plans but yours might include a social media campaign, email marketing, printing costs and design work for an event landing page.


Do you have a question you’d like to ask? Need assistance getting retreat ready? Just want to say hello? I would love to hear from you! Please click below to schedule a Chat with Kat.













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