Recently I have received several inquiries about what is required in order to hold a free couponing workshop, sponsored by The Telegraph. I thought I would take a few moments to explain the process for scheduling and holding a successful, informative workshop on couponing in Middle Georgia.
First, because the workshops are sponsored by The Telegraph, there is no charge to the group that schedules the class or to the participants who come and learn in the class. Second, I work with the group to determine a good time for the workshop.
Saturday mornings are great -- but weeknights work well, also. Once we settle on a time and date, I create a listing with EventBrite, a free online registration system.
At that point, The Telegraph works to promote the class by advertising in the newspaper. The group that hosts the workshop -- whether a church, a government organization, a civic club, etc. -- helps spread the word and gets people registered for the free class. Once we have reached a pre-registered number of 35 or more, the workshop is fully confirmed.
I am often asked what a workshop entails -- what do I teach, how long is the class, etc. A workshop typically takes two hours. During the class, I cover the basics of couponing in the first hour and I provide more detailed instructions for increasing coupon savings during the second hour.
I discuss types of coupons, how to identify them and how to spot fraudulent ones. I teach about coupon policies in local stores and where to find the friendliest customer service representatives.
During the workshop, I cover the best ways to handle checkout time, rebates and rain checks. I use real-life examples of couponing successes and failures. The workshop is very informal and participants are allowed (and encouraged) to ask questions and offer suggestions throughout.
If you have ever considered hosting a free couponing workshop, I would encourage you to email me or send a Facebook message so we can schedule a class. There are several benefits to the group that hosts the class.
I have taught workshops everywhere from churches to hair salons to party venues, from hospitals to a fire station to a business conference room. All these hosting groups have had the opportunity to provide information about their group or business or organization to the people who attend the workshop.
The hair salon was able to offer a discount coupon to the participants, who introduced some new customers to its business. The fire station was able to provide literature on checking smoke detector batteries and other fire safety topics.
Churches are able to welcome new guests to their facilities and give them information about their services, and so on. If community outreach is important to your group, consider reaching a new group of people with a money-saving message.
Another benefit for workshop participants is the opportunity to subscribe to The Telegraph at a greatly reduced rate. New subscribers can access a Wednesday/Sunday subscription through my workshops for about half the cost of subscribing for the same service through any other vendor.
Workshop participants receive a workbook with room for taking notes, a copy of a recent newspaper with coupons from The Telegraph, and also have the chance to win nearly $75 in door prizes at each class.
As families are making a renewed commitment to watch their budget, consider hosting a free couponing workshop this fall! Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or online at The Telegraph’s Savings Sense Facebook page.
Rachael J. Mercer is a freelance writer and coupon workshop instructor living in McDonough.