Planning an event is no easy task; even a well-planned event may fail to attract enough of an audience. Imagine an event where every logistical detail is perfect, but the event-space is half empty and your speaker is echoing around an unenthusiastic group of people. That’s the last thing you want to see as an event manager.
You don’t want an event with unsold tickets and empty chairs. A perfect venue with great guest speakers might not be enough to skyrocket your ticket sales.
In this article, we’re going to present some practical tips to boost your event attendance. You should:
- Choose a well-known and convenient location
- Pick the right event date
- Simplify the event ticketing process
- Offer early-bird incentives
- Create an event schedule
- Encourage committed attendees to promote your event
- Remind registered attendees to join your event
- Use great photos and visuals to promote your event
- Encourage interaction with your event on social media
- Do street marketing to promote your event
- Create different ticket tiers for your event attendees
- Follow up and thank your attendees after the event
Planning events can be really difficult. But, with these tips on hand your team is sure to pull it off.
1. Choose a well-known and convenient location
The event venue should be easily accessible via public transportation. If it’s too far away or too expensive, you’ll lose attendees.
Here are three things to ensure while selecting an event venue:
- It has all the necessary facilities and capacity to accommodate the attendees. The place shouldn’t be too costly, or it’ll drive up the ticket price.
- The location is distinctive and easy to recognize. Try to choose a place which is well-known in the locality.
- It’s a convenient place for the majority of your potential ticket-buyers. They shouldn’t find it hard to reach your event.
2. Pick the right event date
Attendance rate varies depending on the time and date of your event.
Here are some tips to help you find the perfect date:
- Decide whether you want to arrange the event on a weekday or weekend. Weekend events may cost less due to low venue charges.
- Afternoons or evenings on the weekend are perfect for weddings or family events, but business events on the weekend are likely to have low attendance.
- Avoid holidays. People usually have specific plans for those days, and they are unlikely to attend your event.
- Also, avoid major cultural or sports events. You should check for possible conflicting events before fixing the date.
- For outdoor events, like concerts, you should choose alternate days in advance. The crowd won’t be pleased if you cancel the event and refund everyone due to bad weather. Having a preset alternate day will help you quickly reschedule your event.
3. Simplify the event ticketing process
An online event ticketing system will boost your number of attendees by a significant degree. There are many online event management platforms that you can try. Choose one that meets your needs.
A good online ticketing system must have the following features –
- Support for multiple payment methods.
- Option for setting up different ticket categories, types, and seat plan.
- A simple registration process that doesn’t ask for too much information from the ticket buyers.
4. Offer early-bird incentives
Early-bird discount is a very common method to increase event attendance. The general strategy is to reduce the ticket price for certain days in the beginning. This encourages people to buy tickets early and gives your event momentum.
Here are some strategies that you can use to customize your early-bird offers:
- Extend your early-bird registration deadline at the last moment. Many interested people will gladly accept the second chance.
- Apart from discounts, you can offer early-buyers other incentives. Give away food coupons, gifts, or special offers from your event sponsors. These will bring more people to your event.
- Use your social media and other marketing channels to promote the early-bird offer. Encourage your first customers to extend the offer to their family and friends.
5. Create an event schedule
Your event must have a detailed plan with fixed agendas. Let people know about the event schedule early. This will help your potential attendees make informed decisions about your event, and your tickets will get sold to the right audience.
Here are some tips on creating a perfect event schedule:
- Discuss with your guest speakers or performers before setting the time distribution for each event segment. Failing to run the event according to the plan will discourage your attendees.
- Include the event schedule in all your event related communications.
- A boring schedule may reduce your event attendance. For day-long events or family events, include some extracurricular activities.
6. Encourage committed attendees to promote your event
Encourage ticket buyers and participants to bring more people to the event. It’s easy for them to influence their peers.
Your speakers or performers can also promote the event among their fans. This type of promotion creates a vibrant community and keeps up the buzz for your event.
- Offer discounts for group-ticket sales. This will encourage people to book for their family members and friends.
- Email event updates to committed attendees via email. Request them to connect with your event profile on social media.
- Offer incentives for referrals. For example, anyone who refers three of their friends to buy tickets may get a free drink coupon.
7. Remind registered attendees to join your event
People are busy and forgetful. It’s crucial to remind your registered attendees of the event date and schedule.
These reminders will help you confirm their attendance. After all, selling tickets is not the only target of any event organizers. You want to see a fully-packed venue.
Here are some ways to remind your registered attendees of your event:
- After someone buys an event ticket online, send them a calendar invite in the confirmation email. Then they can add the event to their calendar with a single click.
- Send them a reminder email at least three days prior to the event.
- Call or SMS them one day before the event.
8. Use great photos and visuals to promote your event
Whether you’re using them on your website, your social media profiles, or on an event registration page, use professional photography. The graphic design choices you make set the tone for your event, so by opting for high-quality photos your team can establish that your events are worth attending.
9. Encourage interaction with your event on social media
There’s a social media strategy called the 4-1-1 rule. If you make a promotional post in social media, you should re-share one relevant post. Then post four related posts from other people or brands.
Depending on the nature of your event, you may not follow this exact sharing ratio. But it’s still important to share relevant, useful and exciting content on your social media accounts in general.
The bottom line is that your social media output shouldn’t just be limited to event updates. If you really want to make the most of this platform, vary the content you publish to ensure that when you do share important event updates, that your followers will actually see them.
10. Do street marketing to promote your event
Street marketing is an effective way to sell more tickets. It may seem a bit outdated, but it will help you get more attendees to your event.
- Prepare well-designed flyers with your event schedule. Post these in local coffee shops, malls, and other public places near the event. The more local people know about your event, the more likely they will show up for it.
- Hire a few agents who will directly share your event flyers to the people on the street. Target the places where there is a high density of potential attendees.
11. Create different ticket tiers for your event attendees
Set different prices for different ticket categories. A flat rate may be easier to manage, but it’s not the best way to sell more tickets. There should be at least two or three different categories – such as Premium, General, and Economy.
- Note that you must offer a VIP experience for premium ticket holders. Make sure that tickets are worth the higher price. Many buyers will opt for the premium category if you provide enough incentives.
- Low price tickets will attract people who weren’t that much interested in joining your event. These could be a half-day ticket or provide restricted access to the program.
12. Follow up and thank your attendees after the event
Don’t forget about your event attendees and participants once your event is over. By following up with your event attendees, you’ll show them that you value your relationship and want to see it grow. This way, you leave the door open for future engagement and event attendance.
Here are some tips on post-event responsibilities:
- Send thank you emails to everyone involved with the event. Personalize the emails sent to your guests.
- Follow-up with any pending issue or customer complains. It’s your responsibility to resolve these even after the event is over.
- Reward your volunteers. Though they were working for free, they deserve your gratitude.
- Share a followup survey. Ask key questions of your event attendees so you can figure out how to convert them into donors.
We hope you’ll find the above tactics helpful for increasing your event attendance. As events vary a lot in nature, you should customize these tips to meet your particular needs. If you don’t have the budget to try all these ideas at once, pick a few. Measure your results and find out what works the best for you.
Creating events and distributing tickets has never been easier than with EventBookings’ innovative ticketing platform. This system acts as a virtual ticket booth, where users can visit your custom-made event page, find out about your event and pay for tickets with a few simple clicks of the mouse.