Note: This article, written by Whitney Larson, was published in Nightclub & Bar magazine this week.
Every event or venue, regardless of size, benefits from pre-selling tickets. It’s how you’re able to pay for your event before it even happens. It’s how you know whether or not your event is going to be a success. And it’s one of the easiest revenue-building things you can do.
Follow these steps to earn more pre-sale revenue for your event.
1. Get the right ticketing system
The first step in pre-selling tickets is finding the right ticketing partner. Many ticketing companies fail to give venues access to their own data. Make sure you have full control of your events and get access to all of your data before, during, and after the event. There are technology platforms that incorporate ticketing into the rest of your efforts, giving you that full 360-degree look at how your venue is performing. Look to ticketing companies that allow you to:
- Create and manage an online event page
- Sell tickets to consumers right through the page via an e-commerce system
- Get access to a white labeled widget that gets embedded in your website so your online ticketing page looks identical to the rest of your website
- Integrate the event with a mobile app for promoters to sell tickets directly from their devices
- Track ticket sales and results along the way
This type of platform syncs all promoters and marketing efforts together to maximize ticket sales before the night of your event.
2. Use a combination of selling techniques
Selling tickets is an ongoing effort, but it doesn’t have to be laborious. Use a multi-channel strategy to sell your tickets, such as one that consists of online, mobile, and in-person sales. Using an integrated ticketing widget allows you to use the e-commerce ticket sales system directly on your website so your visitors never have to be redirected somewhere else to make that purchase. Plus, using an accompanied mobile application turns your promoters and sales team into a traveling box office by selling tickets to customers directly from their device. All the channels working together at once is what drives awareness, buzz, and sales.
3. Get the word out to the right people
Marketing and sales go hand-in-hand. So while your sales team is out there making transactions, make sure your marketing team is working alongside them with spreading the word. The best strategy is to always keep your customers informed while maintaining a clear and consistent message. If you have a CRM system in place, use filters to segment your customers into specific targeted audiences, which in turn means each audience gets messages that are 100% relevant to their habits. That’s powerful marketing, and that’s what continues to drive guests to your events.
4. Make sure the money goes directly into your bank
Most ticketing sites collect your customers’ payments in their own banks and hold it until after the event is over. Instead, look to companies that ensure payment goes directly through your merchant services provider and into your bank account right from the get-go. That way, a guest purchasing a ticket to your event is the same process as that guest buying a drink inside your venue. There’s no point in collecting pre-sales to help pay for your event if you’re not going to get your money from those sales until weeks after the event is over.
5. Strategize your lines
What’s the benefit of a guest pre-buying a ticket if they don’t even get to skip the long line? Do not have just one line at your event. Oftentimes, there are 3 different audiences standing in this one line that you need to consider:
- Guests who pre-bought a ticket
- Guests who were on the VIP guestlist and did not need to buy a ticket
- Guests waiting to buy a ticket at the door
Putting a bit of strategy into how you treat your line can increase your revenue and speed of night, especially when it comes to pre-sale tickets. Use a separate line for different functions and slow down the general admission line just a bit to amplify the speed of the pre-sale line. This entices guests to make behavioral changes to buy a ticket ahead of time, which in turn equates to more money in your pocket before the night of your event.
6. Analyze results to increase revenue for the next event
Getting access to your data gives you the opportunity to truly understand how your venue and events are performing. Make sure the ticketing company you work with not only gives you access to your data, but also provides it to you in one central spot. This helps you to easily see data about individual guests, sales, and staff members to truly identify areas of strength and weakness. Once you know how well you did, you’re able to better set yourself up for success for your next event.
Whitney Larson is the president and director of marketing at Vēmos. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the form below.