New Year’s Eve 2017 is just around the corner, and we are well aware of how crazy things are for anyone in the event industry right now. Whether you are still in the process of bringing all the moving pieces of your event together, or whether you’re ready to face the mayhem head on, we know that one thing never leaves a event promoter’s mind; how to maximize New Year’s Eve ticket sales.
That’s why we decided to talk with the CEO of myZone Media, Mike Schwarz. Having over 12 years of New Year’s Eve event marketing experience, he can be considered somewhat of an industry veteran, and a true expert on the topic. We’ve compiled his top tips to help you sell more New Year’s Eve tickets in this in-depth article that we recommend to literally every event promoter/producer in the industry. While this article was originally written on the top of NYE event marketing, the information here applies to Halloween event marketing… and most other event types.
Whether you’re one of the new kids on the block or a experienced event promoter who’s done his rounds, we guarantee there is something useful here for everyone. Have a read of what Mike has to say and do not hesitate to get in contact with the myZone team with any event marketing questions you may have.
Successful New Year’s Eve Event Marketing
If you really want to sell more New Year’s Eve tickets, we cannot overemphasize how important it is that you get the ball rolling early. Given the importance and significance of this global holiday, people always want to celebrate it with their friends and family, which is why it is super important to target early-bird ticket buyers, and make sure they have tickets to your event.
“While it is always important to start your event marketing early, it is even more important when you’re planning New Year’s Eve events,” says Mike.
The best way to do this is by giving your market/target audience plenty of incentives to buy tickets well in advance. Motivate buyers by keeping prices very low early on, and make sure you’re marketing your event via all your relevant internet platforms (social media, your website, clubzone.com. etc) well before December.
“One piece of advice I always give our clients is to look at what the biggest event promoters in North America are doing, and use their tricks to your advantage,” says Mike, pointing to Jon Gabel (New York City) and Luke Wryder (Los Angeles) as a prime examples.
Both Luke & John use some of the most aggressive early-bird pricing on the planet. Some of their tickets may start at just $75, and approach anywhere up to $275 as New Year’s creeps closer. This strategy is incredibly effective for boosting New Year’s Eve ticket sales, as such low prices are a great incentive to commit to an event early.
By doing so, you are essentially turning your customers into individual event promoters, as they will be encouraging all the people in their social group to join them in ringing in the new year.
Over 50% of customers purchase tickets to NYE events in the final 7 days before the big night. This fact is extremely important to consider because this is when a lot of activity is going on in social groups, as people are reaching out to one another and trying to coordinate plans.
If you can reach just one person in a social group with an early bird sale, you have a huge possibility to sell more New Year’s Eve tickets to all of their friends as well. Hence, it is extremely important that you are on top of your New Year’s Eve event marketing right from the start, and that you get the ball rolling early!
Know the NYE Sales Cycle for Your Market
Once you’ve started marketing your event nice and early, it is really important that you have a solid understanding of the specific sales cycle for you target market. By doing so, you’ll be completely aware of how you’re performing, and how you should adapt your New Year’s Eve event marketing strategy to stay ahead of the game.
By looking at historic ticket sales data specific to individual markets, myZone can provide you with in-depth knowledge on how you are performing in comparison to your competitors.
“For example on December 3rd, we are (historically) approximately 15% into the NYE sales cycle. So, if by this point you’ve already sold 30% of your inventory, you are selling two times faster than the market, and you’re on pace to sell twice the amount of your capacity,” says Mike.
These kinds of statistics give you exclusive insight into your individual performance in relation to that of the rest of the market, and gives you a unique opportunity to adapt your strategies accordingly.
“If you are well ahead of the market (around 30%-40%), you can aggressively increase your ticket prices. If you are behind the curve, then you know that you need to keep your prices low and invest in a strong marketing strategy,” says Mike.
Then in that final week, when over 50% of NYE event tickets are sold, you can use this information to once again tailor your marketing strategy in the final race to the finish line.
Having this kind of knowledge up your sleeve gives you a unique advantage over you competitors by allowing you to adapt your marketing behavior according to your performance, and come up with a plan to maximize your sales and minimize your marketing budget.
SEO: Create and Update Lots of Unique Content
This is another tip that we cannot stress enough. Search engines play a huge role in directing web traffic, and you need to make sure you are doing everything you can to stay on top of SEO as part of your New Year’s Eve event marketing strategy.
“From 2001 till now, we are still getting over 65% of web traffic directed to our site via search engines. That’s why we spend so much time understanding how SEO works, and why it should be a number one priority for anyone listed on the internet,” says Mike.
One of the best ways to direct as much relevant search engine traffic to your website as possible and maximize your New Year’s Eve ticket sales is by creating lots of unique content. To do this, post in-depth articles about your event, and don’t just write a general 100-word description as you would for any other weekly party. Also make sure you are not posting the same content in multiple locations on the internet.
Some event promoters tend to post the same event description on all the different marketing and social platforms they use (such as Facebook, clubZone, ticketZone, and their own website), and this can be really damaging to their SEO ranking. When Google or other search engines look at these results and see duplicate content, they have to make a decision which of these sites to rank best, and they may decide to rank your Facebook page better than your own website, making it harder for you to be found.
To avoid this, make sure you are posting plenty of unique content as part of your New Year’s Eve event marketing strategy, and keeping that content as fresh as possible. Go all-out for New Year’s and take the time to take guests on a detailed tour of your event and let them know what they can expect. People do a lot of research when they’re planning for New Year’s Eve and they often read reviews and articles and browse photo galleries to figure out where to celebrate. So, make sure you are giving them plenty of insight into your event, and why they should pick it over all others!
And we’re not talking about standard content… always think 10x. If you don’t know what 10x content is listen from the pros at Moz here.
We recommend remarketing to all of both your and our clients as one of the most effective, low-cost marketing services available today, and it should be a top priority for your New Year’s Eve event marketing strategy.
“Some of our biggest markets such as Toronto and New York will have over 150 ticketed NYE events posted. The average person is looking at over 17 events before making a decision, which makes re-marketing a very important tool for this time of the year,” says Mike.
As we’ve already mentioned, New Year’s Eve is a big deal for everyone, and a very involved purchase decision. The night symbolizes a new beginning and acceptance of the past for a lot of people, and they want to celebrate in a truly special way. What remarketing offers is a very cheap way to make your event stand out from all others, and can significantly increase your ticket sales.
This is how it works; a customer may be looking at your event on clubZone.com or on your website, and they may even have added something to their online shopping cart, but they have not yet bought a single thing. They may easily continue browsing and look at over 20 other events before making their decision, and in this time it can be super easy for your event to get lost or forgotten, and for you to lose a sale.
To work around that, we can put tracking code on your webpage, on your shopping cart, on your listing on clubZone and Ticketvibe, and can follow people who have expressed interest in your events around the internet with image advertisements reminding them that your event is the best one to be looking at.
What this does is it keeps your event at the top of the potential customer’s mind and makes it stand out from the hundreds of other events in their city, which is a great way to drive New Year’s Eve ticket sales.
“If a customer is looking at over 17 different NYE events on the internet and then talks to their friends about their plans for New Year’s, which event do you think they are most likely to mention? The one that was remarketed all over the net, of course,” explains Mike.
When using re-marketing services, we recommend capping your impressions high, at between 5-10 impressions per day. You could run this for weeks on end, costing you nothing more than a few dollars per user for a service that is guaranteed to help you sell more New Year’s Eve tickets. Mike says be sure you test out various segments / strategies to see which ones are getting you the lowest cost per acquisition. From A/B testing you may find out for example that after 7 days of remarketing, you are simply spending money with no incremental conversions from remarketing.
If you’re not re-marketing and your competitors are, you are at a huge disadvantage, especially at this time of the year. When customers are making involved purchase decisions and planning a night out over long stretches of time, it can be really easy for them to forget about your event. Don’t let that happen and stay make sure you stay at the forefront of their mind by doing your remarketing!
Update: If you are lazy, you can use services like AdRoll to help. We recommend not being lazy, save the 20%, and run your marketing manually via Google Adwords and Facebook. If you don’t have time to do remarketing right away, at very minimum, get your remarketing tags set up now so that you can start to build up a large audience
- Exclusion lists: Don’t forget to create exclusion lists so you aren’t accidentally wasting money on people who have already purchased a ticket from you!
- Segment by purchase lifecycle: We use cold (bounced, aka 1 page view), warm (multiple page views), hot (abandoned cart), and closed (clients that have purchased). Understand what your CPA’s are in each of your segments and always start with hot first, working your way down to cold so long as you are maintaining CPA’s that are below your maximum target. Typically, you can exclude bounce / cold visitors on your list and save some $.
- Change up your ad copy: Keep the ad copy fresh.
- Don’t forget the text ads: Yes, sounds crazy, but don’t forget to run text remarketing ads as well. We’ve seen many a campaign where text ads were dramatically outperforming the image ads.
Create a Viral Facebook Contest
One of the best ways to create a lot of buzz around your event and boost your New Year’s Eve ticket sales is by hosting a viral Facebook contest.
myZone does this on your behalf by giving your customers the chance to win free tickets (or whatever prize you have) to your event. Each person who enters is automatically encouraged to share the event with all of their friends, as they will get an extra 3 entries into the contest for every single Facebook friend that enters as well. This is a great initiative for people to create a lot of hype around your event and share it all around the internet. Our writers also post a brief article on clubzone.com about the contest, automatically creating more unique content for you.
“With these contests, you’ll often see hundreds if not thousands of people spamming their friends to sign up for the contest so that they can get more entries. They are a great way to make your event go viral on social media,” says Mike.
Facebook contests are an easy way to generate anticipation for your event and reach more people. They are easy to organize, and our team manage it all for you, from the initial launch right through to announcing and contacting the winners. In the vibrant age of social media, Facebook contests should be a high priority for your New Year’s Eve event marketing strategy.
Check out a recent contest that we ran promoting the Enchant Christmas Light Maze & Market here. It was the most successful contest to date, reaching over 1M people with 17k shares, on a budget of <$2000. An important point with making something go viral is A/B testing the shit out of it. We had nearly identical contests running with 1/4 the results and 4x the cost per engagement. Test, test test!
Give Your Guests Plenty of Pricing Options
Another one of our top tips to help you maximize New Year’s Eve ticket sales is to offer your guests a wide variety of activities and ticket options! The New Year’s Eve market is different from the normal nightlife market, and combines a wide variety of people from different backgrounds and with different interests.
While it is obvious that your event should have lots of different activities/entertainment options to help you engage a wide variety of people, we also highly recommend giving your customers a good range of ticket options.
“California Nightlife do this really well. For their Tinseltown NYE party, they have eleven different ticket options ranging from $69 to $2500. That may seem excessive, but it is actually a really smart move,” says Mike.
By having so many different ticket options you are increasing your ability to cater for a variety of different people, from those who want an affordable yet fun night out, to those who are willing to give you $2000 to be treated like a rock star.
Remember, New Year’s Eve is more than just another night out at a local club, and there are people out there who are willing to spend big to have a truly memorable night. Make sure you have something for everyone by having a variety of different ticketing options to help you sell more New Year’s Eve tickets to a wide range of people.
Slimy promoter tip: Even if you aren’t selling a $2,500 table, throw it on there as sold out to create a high reference price. Suddenly your $120 tickets seem like a bargain 😉
Get Listed on the clubZone Network
We have the largest New Year’s Eve marketing network in North America and our content is syndicated out to hundreds of different websites. For many of our clients, we are the largest source of New Year’s Eve ticket sales, and we offer a variety of different marketing packages suited to the individual needs of different companies. For example, our Gold Package gets you newsletter inclusions, banner ads, featured event exposure, improved ranking on the site, and much more.
The best part is, all of this doesn’t cost you a single cent upfront, as we run on a unique pay for performance model where you only pay when we sell something for you.
So, contact us and sign up to the largest and most powerful NYE marketing program in North America, and maximize your New Year’s Eve ticket sales today.