Email is one of the most important tools in your event marketing toolbox. Easy to create and ultra-affordable, email makes it easy to promote your event to tens of thousands of people with a single click.
Event marketing is even easier when you take advantage of email automation, which allows you to schedule a series of emails upfront and frees your time to focus on other marketing efforts. Make your next event a success by automating the following seven emails designed to boost attendance and drive ticket sales.
1. Event invitations
Begin your email series with an invitation to your event. Your invitation emails should create excitement. Ask yourself:
- How is your event relevant to your audience?
- Why should they attend? What benefits will they get, and what experience can they expect?
- Where can they learn more?
- How can they register?
Common sense says your event invitations (and all your event emails) must include the name, date, time and location as well as your event logo. But go the extra mile by telling your audience what’s in it for them.
2. Early bird discounts and incentives
What can you offer to people who register early? A discount or freebie can be a powerful incentive that also helps you determine how many attendees you need to plan for. Ideas include:
- A discount on event tickets purchased before a deadline
- A series of tiered discounts leading up to the event
- A freebie if they sign up by a certain date, such as a T-shirt
- VIP seating or accommodations
- First dibs on the official event hotel
- Preferred parking or a free parking pass
- Backstage passes
- Food and drink vouchers
Not sure which offer will motivate your audience? Consider A/B split testing against small segments of your list to see which gets the greatest response. Then, send that offer to your larger list.
3. Referral requests
Events are more fun with friends, so include referral requests as part of your email series. You can send emails that:
- Ask registered attendees to invite friends, and offer an incentive for every friend who registers
- Offer special incentives to groups of three or more to encourage multiple ticket sales
- Promote an in-event contest, such as best group T-shirt or costume
- Offer hotel room discounts for multi-room bookings
- Offer free or discount parking for cars with three or more people
- Give attendees a social link to easily share and invite their friends
- Encourage attendees to forward your email invite to their contacts
Remind your audience how much they’ll enjoy your event if they bring friends along, and you can easily double or triple your ticket sales.
4. Group sales emails
Use email to promote group sales and earn a massive spike in ticket sales. Ideas include emails that:
- Ask your audience to share your event with their groups, such as nonprofits, church groups, clubs, sports teams, schools, Facebook groups, community organizations and any other group they’re part of
- Offer group discounts and incentives such as reserved seating so groups can sit together
- Offer special incentives for nonprofit groups, such as a portion of ticket sales donated to a given cause
- Promote a charity that groups will be interested in supporting: They get to contribute and have a great time doing it
Consider which types of groups are likely to be interested in your event. Then, help them see why attending your event is a good idea for their group.
5. Event newsletters and announcements
Send regular email updates to keep your audience interested and excited. Ideas include:
- Entertainment announcements: Tell your audience who will be performing as you ink contracts
- Food and vendor announcements: What treats can they enjoy at your event? Which vendors offer on-site shopping?
- Available experiences: Will your event have games, contests, obstacles and other experiences attendees can participate in?
- Helpful tips: How can they get in early? Where should they park? What are the best directions? Where are the best seats?
- Event schedule: Make it easy for attendees to print a schedule to keep in their pockets
Use email newsletters and announcements to continually create buzz around your event and increase registrations as the date draws near.
6. Social shares
Use email to ask your audience to share your events on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social accounts. A simple request can work, but you might get better results if:
- You attach your email to a contest; for example, promote a photo contest prior to the event and let others judge the winners on social media
- You offer a special incentive for sharing your event, especially if those shares lead to ticket sales
- Your event supports a cause, remind your audience about your event’s impact and suggest social sharing as a simple way they can help
Don’t underestimate the power of social media for event promotion or the ability of email to drive social shares.
7. Product sales
Offering cool swag at your event? Let your attendees get it early with emails that promote product sales. Ideas include:
- T-shirts, hats and other apparel
- Wristbands or event bracelets
- Drinkware such as tumblers, water bottles and coffee mugs
- Flying discs
- Tote bags
Even better, create an official event swag bag packed with the necessities attendees need to “survive” your event. Sell it as an add-on to ticket sales or offer it as an early registration incentive.
Get even better results with advanced event email automation
These seven types of event emails are a great start for event promotion, but you can take your marketing a step further with advanced automation. For example, you can:
- Automatically segment registrants into new lists and automate emails that focus on referrals and product sales
- Automatically segment your audience by demographics and promote unique selling points by segment; for example, you can advertise the charitable cause your event supports or the entertainment value of your event
- Automatically segment VIP ticket holders from standard registrants and automate different emails according to the experiences they’ll have — and promote unique upsells relevant to each audience
Remember, the more your emails speak to your audience, the more likely they are to respond, share and register. Advanced automation can maximize ticket sales for your event.
Augment your email marketing with social automation
Email isn’t the only event marketing platform you can automate. Augment your email promotions with social posts scheduled to coincide with your emails. Doing so offers multiple benefits, including:
- Multi-channel marketing and repetition that influences registrations
- Social proof when your audience likes and shares your event
- “Set it and forget it” simplicity when you schedule your posts ahead of time
- The ability to focus your efforts on new event marketing opportunities as the event draws near
Email and social automation are powerful event marketing tools that are proven to increase event attendance and boost ticket sales. Leverage the power of automation to make your next event a roaring success.
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© 2019, Brian Morris. All rights reserved.