Use referral marketing
Have you ever tried out a new restaurant, film or beauty product because a family or friend tried it, liked it and recommended it? That’s because 84% of us are more likely to trust recommendations from people we know.
Word of mouth marketing, or referral marketing remains a powerful marketing tool for many event organisers. Eventbrite’s 2018 Pulse Report noted that event organisers still count word-of-mouth as the third most effective way to promote events, after free social media and email.
You can make referrals work for your event by incentivising people to tell their friends and family about your event. An example is Web Summit, an annual tech conference who sold out all 25,000 of their Women in Tech tickets this year. All customers had to do was refer at least two friends using a unique link in order to get two for one tickets for the conference.
If your event has a sponsor, you could negotiate with them to offer freebies, discounts or vouchers for sponsored goods as a reward to customers for referring people. There are several different ways to incentivise referrals, so get creative and explore the different options!
Influencer’s aren’t just great for brands, but for event organisers too. Partnering with influencers whose followers are your target audience is another way to boost ticket sales for your event.
For instance, if you’re selling tickets for a food festival, a good idea is partner with a popular food blogger or vlogger and get them to spread the word about the event to their followers via their channels. Your influencer could then offer their viewers discounted tickets using a promo code.
Online social guides are popular ways to reach thousands of potential attendees. Sections like ‘What’s On’ and weekend event listing tend to generate thousands of impressions from all sorts of viewers and is often an effective way to get your event on the radar.
Certain online event guides like Time Out, Secret London and The Nudge are useful for getting your event in front of a specific audience like young trendy Londoners, while DesignMyNight are great for promoting night time events and so on. There are plenty of online guides out there that can cater to your target audience, so shop around.
Introduce multiple ticket tiers
Sometimes general admission tickets just don’t cut it. Depending on your type of event, you could have general admission, VIP, early bird, student, member, family, multi admission, seating, standing…the list goes on!
A multi-tiered ticket model is especially useful if your event is offering something extra special. If you’ve teamed up with a sponsor for instance to create a special hospitality, a VIP section, after party or experiential product, then you’ll benefit from creating a different ticket with a higher price. Promoting any extra special features of your event will help to get people talking and create a sense of urgency. People will feel like they have to go in order to experience it, and will be more keen to buy special tickets.
Utilise your most popular channel, and explore new ones
This is an obvious one, however revisiting your most effective channel for ticket sales — whether it’s social media, paid advertising, e-newsletters or another option, is key to reaching the right audience and driving those ticket sales.
Think about how you can maximise these channels. For example, posting on social media twice a day instead of once, sending out weekly instead of monthly e-newsletters in the weeks leading up to your event and so on. But be careful not to spam your potential attendees with too much content, as this could lose you some ticket sales!
Don’t be afraid to explore other channels too. Instagram is often underused by many brands, and targeted paid social media is still very effective in converting impressions to sales for event organisers. SEO can also serve as an option for getting the word out about your event, so be sure to optimise it across your existing channels.
Team up with sponsors and partners
Event sponsors and partners can be incredibly useful for driving ticket sales, especially of they have a large customer base that you could reach. Your sponsors could agree to co-promote by spreading the word about your event via their channels in exchange for brand promotion across your channels. This is often a win-win situation and is often a more cost effective way to boost ticket sales without paying for expensive ads.