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You put a lot of effort into planning a great party, from picking the perfect menu to setting up amazing decorations. Part of the planning process sometimes includes the need for your guests to RSVP. Whether you need an exact headcount for your party venue or you just want to know how much food to prepare, getting RSVPs from your guests is appreciated. But sometimes, simply asking your guests to RSVP isn’t enough to ensure they actually respond to your invite. These five simple tips make it more likely that your guests actually RSVP to your invitation.
Give Them Options
Your guests are often busy and inundated with tons of requests on a daily basis. By giving them plenty of ways to let you know if they’re coming or not, you’re increasing the odds that your guests will actually RSVP to your party.
- Start by including a phone number to call. Since this is the most common method to RSVP, it’s a good idea to give more traditional guests an option to call you to let you know if they’re coming or not.
- Include a texting option. Sometimes, people aren’t comfortable calling with an RSVP. But giving an option to text instead of call makes it super easy for guests who don’t like phone calls to give their response to an invitation.
- Add an email. More electronic options means easier reply options for your guests. And the easier you make it, the more likely they are to let you know if they’re coming.
Give Them a Reason
Guests often skip the RSVP because they don’t know exactly why you need it. The next time you send an invitation, be clear about the reason behind the RSVP to increase the likelihood that your guests will send a response. There are a variety of reasons you could provide to your guests to make them see that a response is necessary to plan for your party, like:
- Providing your guests with personalized favors
- Having enough seating for all the guests
- Providing the caterers with meal orders
- Making enough cupcakes for all the kids
- Having enough place settings for each of the guests
- Providing enough prizes for party games
Provide a Deadline
Asking your guests to respond to your invitation in an open-ended manner gives them the chance to put it off, which means they’re more than likely to forget until it’s time to go to the party. Instead of asking for a general response to your invite, give your guests a deadline to ensure they know exactly when they need to let you know if they can make it.
On top of helping you complete your party planning before the big day arrives, setting a response date also provides your guests with a set deadline for reply. And while you probably won’t turn guests away if they respond past your RSVP deadline, those straggling replies are better than no reply and having unexpected guests show up at your party.
Send Electronic Invites
While paper invitations are still the most common way to invite guests to a party, they’re certainly not the only way. In today’s digital age, providing an electronic invitation is one of the best ways to ensure your guests get their invitation and respond to it promptly. And if you’re not open to doing an electronic-only invitation, why not do both? Start by sending paper invites, then follow up with an electronic invitation that asks your guests to instantly respond to ensure you get those much-needed RSVPs.
Electronic invitations allow guests to view all the details of your party, add the information directly to their digital calendars, and RSVP with the push of a button. With so much ease at their fingertips, your guests are much more likely to say yes or not to your invitation right after they receive it instead of putting it off and forgetting to respond.
Follow Up If Needed
While following up on nonresponses may not be necessary for your kid’s birthday party, if you’re throwing a big party, like a wedding, getting RSVPs is especially important. Start by keeping track of all the RSVPs you have received by logging them in a central location. As the big day nears, take the time to make a list of all the guests who have not responded and reach out to them to see if they can give you a quick reply.
A simple email or text is a great way to gently remind nonresponsive guests that you need a reply. In your message, be sure to include all the information about the event, including the date, time, and location, so your guests won’t have to search for your invitation to find what they need to know. Then, offer them a way to respond that makes it as simple as possible for them to reply.