Marketing Your Livestreamed Event: 4 Tips to Boost Sales Online
Some ideas about how you should market livestreamed events and how this might differ from in-person event promotion.
In the midst of restrictions on live venues, you can support your business by streaming events online. This may be new and daunting territory, and it can be difficult to figure out how to market online events and use them to generate revenue.
Broadly, many of the principles that apply to in-person events apply here, but there are a few things you can think about to ease the transition to streaming online and hybrid events.
Getting and keeping punters’ attention online is tough, so getting them to buy tickets poses a big challenge, especially for independent venues or acts. However, there are some ticketing strategies you could adopt to promote your events.
Firstly, you should consider implementing a tiered ticketing strategy. Not only would this allow you to offer a range of ticket prices, thus increasing your potential consumer base, but it also creates opportunities to frequently remind customers about your event, alerting them each time a new tier of tickets is on sale.
This could take the form of a three-tiered ticketing system, including early bird, standard, and day-of tickets, much in the template of music festivals. The early bird ticket would appeal to the most dedicated fans, who may be willing to pay a premium to secure guaranteed access. Equally, early bird tickets could be offered to subscribers or members of a social-media fan page if applicable.
Standard tickets might be cheaper, but go on sale later, when fewer slots for entry may be available. Correspondingly, a smaller bundle of day-of tickets could be sold cheaply to last-minute punters, creating incentives to pay more for early access, while still ostensibly offering the service more cheaply to a larger audience.
- Create Capacity Limits
Limiting the number of tickets in each tier may seem counter-intuitive on the internet, where capacity is theoretically limitless, but there are good reasons to consider it. On the one hand, it will offer you a barometer as to how successful each event is. If one event you host sells out of early bird tickets straight away, you know that similar events can be run with a reliably similar success rate in future, perhaps with a larger capacity. On the other hand, creating artificial scarcity offers guests an incentive to secure tickets earlier.
- Make it Special
Online live streams can be more difficult to market because for many people, they are less desirable than in-person events. Visiting a venue in the flesh gives customers a night to set aside, to go for a drink or a meal with friends, and enjoy a performance in the presence of talented performers.
For this reason, you may find it beneficial to offer some additional enticements to potential customers who may be sceptical of trying a live-streamed event online.
You could incorporate warm-up acts to sweeten the deal, or, if possible, try to host something with some novelty. For example, if you’re hosting a band or a comedian trying out new material, you could use this is a selling point for customers, who might be keen to be the first to be exposed to a new song, or a new set.
- Demonstrate Quality and Value
If you’ve read this far, then you must be serious about offering high quality content for an online audience, and there’s nothing wrong with showing customers how much work you’ve put in.
Don’t hesitate to post demonstrations or rig rundowns on your social media sites. Showing customers that you’re invested in the quality of their experience – by showcasing your streaming hardware for example – creates trust and goodwill. You might also think about using the hardware to record an event which can stay online as a guide for customers, who can use it to know what to expect from a live event.Watching stars like Elton John and the Rolling Stones stream from their homes in the early days of lockdown via their dodgy smartphone cameras was charming, for a spell. However, viewers want assurances that their online experience will truly be a substitute for the real thing worth paying for. Don’t hesitate to find ways to show them that they’ll be getting value for money at your events.