Maximizing ticket sales for a conference or similar event is a demanding job. It requires a combination of several specialized tasks. You need to know about event marketing and sales, and you need to understand your target audience. As is often the case in sales, the initial sale of tickets is very successful and then stagnates all of a sudden. This can be very discouraging.
This guide is a help to professionals who want to boost ticket sales. The guide uses the best strategies from the industry as its basis. Enjoy the article while learning about marketing strategies for ticket sales.
How to Increase Your Event’s Ticket Sales
Tell an Engaging Story about Your Origins
Humans share many experiences in common. Our personal experiences may thus not be unique but they help us to relate to other people. If we can relate to others we can also learn from them. Use this to show others why you organized the event.
Emphasize the fact that you are like them and that you face similar problems. You want to share your experience so that they too can overcome those problems. The better people can relate to you, the more they will trust you and that will determine how many tickets you sell.
Sell Tickets at the Right Price Level
An important aspect of marketing strategies for ticket sales is finding the right price. On the one hand, nobody wants to pay for something they find too expensive. On the other hand, if your prices are too low, you won’t be able to cover your costs.
You must base your pricing strategy on your competitiveness. Do some research and find out what your competitors charge for similar events. Also, consider your position in the market. Are you new or have you established a name for yourself? Do your events contain unique features, like a celebrity or popular venue?
Offer Discounts and Different Types of Tickets
You could offer discounted tickets for early bookings or premium options. You could perk up meet-and-greets with celebrity guests. Make sure that you highlight these special features and inform people about any price increase as the date of the event approaches.
Another way to boost ticket sales is by offering group discounts. You can approach event sponsors and invite them and their companies to the event.
Convert Customer Loyalty into Revenue
The best customer is a loyal customer. Not only do they come back to you but they also speak positively about you to others. They engage with your brand and refer you to their colleagues and friends.
You need to take good care of these loyal customers. Bear in mind that 80% of your business comes from 20% of the total number of your customers. Thus, 80% of your ticket buyers come from that 20% of your customers. In other words, this 20% of loyal customers can make your event a success.
It is probable that you will have loyal attendees if you host events on a regular basis. These are the most valuable attendees and customers that you can imagine. You should work hard to keep them coming back.
Fear of Missing Out (FOMO)
You can do much to stimulate this fear of missing out. You can create a sense of urgency so that people feel that they have to get their tickets right now. The technical term for this is scarcity marketing. Researchers that have carried out a survey on this marketing strategy have shown that it works.
A word of warning: do not lie to your potential customers. Do not say that there are a few tickets left when this is not the case.
You can create that sense of urgency in different ways. You can, for example, add a countdown clock to the event ticket sales website. The clock reminds visitors that the time to get a ticket is running out. As a variation of that, you can use the clock to encourage people to book in advance. Seeing that early-bird tickets are cheaper, people will be motivated to buy.
Up the Ante on Free or Low-Cost Options
A low barrier will bring more people to your event. Some event organizers hesitate to charge people for the complete event.
If you are hesitant to charge for your event you can think of a freemium pricing model. In that case, you would offer paid and free tickets to your event. People can sign up for free. That will ensure that many people will be eager to attend your event. These free tickets give access to everything that falls under the basic admission experience.
You can then sell premium tickets in addition to the free signup. Premium buyers get access to extra experiences besides the basic experience. Again, that means extra revenue for you.
Reach a Bigger Audience by Going Hybrid
People have become more familiar with virtual meetings as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. You can take advantage of this development by offering both high-quality online and in-person meetings. By doing this, you will cater to the preferences of a much larger audience. Also, you can start thinking about going international.
If that is the direction you want to take, you will need a professional live-stream set to provide the best experience. Of course, you need to know how to get the best out of your equipment and affiliate marketing software. When you have managed to master all that, you will be ready to reach a global audience of new followers.
Make a Unique Event Page
The previous items discussed how to optimize your marketing strategies for ticket sales. Now it is time to look at the event page.
Nowadays, the internet is the place where people learn about upcoming events. After visiting the page and obtaining more details, people decide whether they will attend. Make sure that your event page grabs the attention of the visitors.
The event page should answer the most important questions. Here are some things you should include:
- Where will it be?
- What is it all about?
- Who will be hosting it?
Avoid using vague descriptions. Those will not convince anyone. People want reasons why they should attend your event.
Sell Tickets from Your Own Event Website or Blog
If you want to sell tickets online you need to make sure that people can trust your sales process. The most reliable source will be your own website.
Through your personal website, you can advertise your brand and lay down your terms and conditions. You are not dependent on others to deal with refunds and you can come in direct contact with buyers that have questions.
If you do not have an event website you need to resort to a third party and they will have their own procedures and policies. Lots of details will be out of your control. Your clients may get nervous about buying from someone else.
Make a LinkedIn Group
Making an event group on LinkedIn can boost ticket sales for your upcoming event. Participants in a LinkedIn group can take part in discussions and set up collaborations.
With their help, you generate a conversation about your event in a natural way. Make the group public so that everyone can join. You may want to add attendees who have already registered and those who haven’t decided yet.
LinkedIn can generate a lot of social media exposure for your event. But through this social media platform, you will also get the attention of other professionals in your line of work. Add a direct link to your registration page so that people know where to buy tickets.
An added benefit of a LinkedIn social media group is that group participants can receive regular email updates. Now you are interacting with your clients in two ways: through your social media channels and through email.
Make Use of Facebook CTAs
Facebook calls to action (CTAs) are another tool in your event marketing plan. You can add a CTA to your Facebook page. Link your CTA to your registration page. Your fans and followers can then access tickets for their events easily.
You can make a special event page on Facebook. There is a special button on the administrator page for adding a call-to-action button. When you click on that button you will see a pop-up where you can customize your CTA. You can change the button’s text and the link to your ticketing page.
Invest in event marketing and advertising. Direct advertising gives your event exposure to a wider audience. Sometimes you need to get as many people as possible to be aware of your event.
- LinkedIn, for example, offers many sponsorship opportunities. These links can get you into contact with many more potential clients and eventgoers.
- Search engine advertising is very effective but pricey
- Facebook also offers paid advertising, which is more affordable. Facebook lets you advertise photos, posts, videos, and much more. There are Messenger ads, campaigns for collecting interest, responses, and RSVPs. Other options are retargeting ads and ads that target a specific demographic. You can target gender, location, age, or interests.
Create an Email Newsletter
Email newsletters are a successful channel in your event marketing efforts. Their strength lies in the fact that your newsletters will reach people that have already shown interest. The success rate of email newsletters is thus much higher. The recipients are more likely to become potential ticket buyers after seeing your list of upcoming events.
An attractive option for sending email newsletters is that you can segment them to appeal to a specific target audience. You could make lists of subscribed CMOs and another one of startup owners. You can send them the same information but with wording that appeals to each group. Sending segmented email newsletters can help you to sell more event tickets.
Launch an Affiliate Campaign
Many consumers receive hundreds of advertisements, promotions, newsletters, and likewise each week. That makes word-of-mouth advertising something personal and refreshing.
You can use the power of word-of-mouth advertising by rewarding attendees for sharing links on their social media channels. In that way, you will be able to see how a new registrant finds out about your event. You can give a commission or discount to the attendee that shared the referral link.
Create Content Around the Event
Many marketing strategies for ticket sales rely on blogs and vlog posts. Creating content related to your event will promote it in an effective way. Posting content before the event will inform and educate your clients and reach a new audience. It creates momentum for the event, leading to an increase in event ticket sales.
When you engage in content marketing campaigns you need to keep in mind that you want to offer something of value. You don’t want to give the impression that you are only trying to sell event tickets. You need to pay attention to the interests of your audience. Include relevant information and other helpful tips for your readers or viewers.
Utilizing Speakers’ Online Networks
Your speakers and other performers have a network too. It is in their interest that many people attend your event. Your guest speakers will likely be willing to use their social media outlets to promote your event. Using their extensive networks will help to make your event a success.
How many attendees will be at your event is strongly linked to your talent lineup. The exposure that your event gives them, results in a relationship that is beneficial for both parties. You sell more tickets and they get the exposure they need to boost their careers.
Exploit a Customer Referral Program
Referrals are very powerful marketing tools. When one e of the buyers talks about your event to others, this can. lead to these buying tickets too. . You could establish a reward system for the referrer. The power now lies in the fact that the referrer is referring to benefit themselves. They want to make a small profit for themselves without thinking about how this benefits you.
How can you do this? Think about how to incentivize ticket sales. Make a list of the rewards you are willing to offer. Your customers can consult the list and they will know and find out what is in it for them.
Create a Contest
First, think of what elements you want your contest to have. What would you like to achieve? You would definitely like to increase your revenue from ticket sales.
The whole point of this is also to increase awareness. A contest has the power of increasing publicity.
In addition, it will generate a lot of important data for you. You can ask the contestants to send you some kind of personal detail. This could be a picture, company name, or something else you can use. If you ask them to send it to you by email, you can generate a list of potential new customers. You can then target the list with your newsletter or event updates.
Encourage Performers to Be a Part of Your Promotion Efforts
Your performers’ and presenters’ needs are the same as yours. Your audience is their audience, so they also want you to sell as many tickets as possible.
Many speakers and presenters have a following of their own. Their fans are your potential meeting attendees. You can set some tickets aside that you can sell through your booked performers to sell to their fans.
Offer to help your guest speakers to promote your event through their website or social media platforms. Ask them to add your ticket widget to their pages. That gives their fans a direct link to the place where they can get tickets to see their heroes.
Enlist Event Sponsors in Promotional Efforts
Experience has shown that engaging event sponsors is very effective in event promotion. With the right partnerships, you get access to a new audience. Make marketing expectations a part of your partnership deals. Shared marketing efforts should be beneficial for both parties.
Here are some things that you can include in the deal:
- Providing a special discount for the sponsor’s employees and customers
- Setting an advertising budget in sponsorship fees
- Supplying a set of branded images, links, and other promotional material for partners to use
Retargeting works. Retargeting means that you send follow-up messages to people that have shown interest in the past. A retargeting message can turn a maybe into a yes.
You can use the retargeting approach on people who have added an event ticket to their basket but haven’t checked out. You can also think of people that have clicked on a Google event ad.
Promote Your Next Event During Your Current Event
The audience for your next event will come, to a large extent, from past attendees that enjoyed your previous events.
At the end of an event, you have the perfect audience for promoting your upcoming event, which means more advertising at no cost. They take an interest in you and your event, and only moments ago enjoyed a good time with you. This is the time to offer early-bird pricing discounts.
You achieve a feeling of urgency and exclusivity at the same time. As discussed, these are two important motivating factors for buying event tickets.
Focus on Your Most Successful Channels
The internet has opened up different channels for promoting events or conferences. These can be very effective but keep in mind that each channel requires focus. If you don’t have the required focus for a specific channel most of your efforts will go to waste.
It sounds like a good idea. Posting a little bit here, a little bit there, and adding some pictures on another platform. That will satisfy all users. But the reality is different because your efforts are too spread out.
Try to find out which of your channels works best for you and your audience. Then invest most time and effort into feeding that channel with information and promotion for your event.
You can keep track of which of the channels you used for past events generated the most hits on your ticket page. If this is your first time, it is best to focus on the channel where you have the most followers.
Combine Your Marketing Strategies for Ticket Sales
You can boost your event ticket sales in many different ways. This post mentioned many of them. It is up to you to find out which strategies work best. It all depends on your event, your brand, and your audience.
Not every strategy works for any kind of event. You can try several tips and tricks for your next event and see how many tickets you sell.
Before implementing any suggestion, sit down and think about your goals and objectives. This is the most important thing if you haven’t used any of the suggestions yet. Research your target audience and decide on your marketing strategies for ticket sales. With time and effort, you will notice a noticeable increase in ticket sales.
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