Finding the right fair ticketing provider is just the first step in holding a successful fair. If you don’t have a great fair website and marketing plan, you won’t sell enough tickets to have your fair again next year!
AttendStar has partnered with Beyond Spots & Dots – a full-service advertising agency with a proven track record working with fairs – to help our ticketing clients promote their fairs and beat their ticket sales goals.
Melanie Querry, the founder of Beyond Spots & Dots, really knows her stuff! I spoke with her recently to get her expert insights into how fairs can build a website and marketing plan that drive ticket sales, and her tips are a must-read for anyone involved in holding large fairs. Keep reading to get all the info.
5 Essential Fair Website Tips
What does a fair website need to attract visitors and convince them to buy tickets? Here are Melanie’s top five tips for a fair website that works:
“Most fair websites are accessed and tickets are purchased by phone,” says Melanie. “A lot of attendees buy tickets while they’re standing in line at the fair. Your site has to be mobile-friendly.”
2. Accurate Information
Melanie explains, “Most fair organizers make sure their social media is updated throughout the year, but they usually only update their websites once per year. Make sure you start updating your website five to six months in advance of the fair.”
3. User-Friendly Navigation
It’s critical that visitors can easily find what they’re looking for on your fair website. Don’t make them have to dig too deep to find what matters to them in terms of deciding whether or not to buy tickets.
4. Videos and Images
“Use videos on your website,” shares Melanie. “They create lots of engagement, and images tell a story. Videos and images should reflect the feel of the fair and consider what people are buying tickets for.”
5. Sales Option
“There should be an option to buy tickets on every page of the website,” says Melanie. This includes at the top of the page, the bottom banner, within the page content, in the sidebar, and so on. The key is to make it as easy as possible to buy tickets at the exact moment a visitor decides to attend the fair.
Marketing Tactics to Leverage
As 2021 comes to a close, what marketing tactics should fair organizers invest their budgets in? Melanie shares several top priorities:
- Social Media Marketing: Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter communications and advertising are crucial for fair promotion and ticket sales.
- Search Engine Marketing: Google, Yahoo, and Bing ads should be a part of your marketing plan.
- New Digital Media: Geo-fenced retargeting, secondary search retargeting, OTT (over-the-top) advertising, and remarketing in general offer significant opportunities to spread the word and sell more tickets.
“As we come out of COVID, new digital media tactics like geo-fenced retargeting are definitely recommended,” Melanie explains. “You can geo-fence other fairs or events to promote your own fair, which you couldn’t do during COVID because there weren’t any events. Now, it’s one of the most important things fairs should consider investing their marketing budgets into.”
Unique Considerations for Fair Marketing
What works for other kinds of events may not work for fairs. Melanie shares, “Fairs have layers of target audiences that you should be trying to reach. While a concert is typically targeted to people who like a genre of music, a fair could have a country artist one night, R&B one night, a comedian, a horse show, and activities for kids.
“Fair organizers need to layer their target audiences, and their marketing dollars have to go really far. They have to identify their target audiences, where to find them, and how to reach them all with a limited budget and without wasting any of it.”
Melanie also recommends tracking sales so you know what works. “You can track all of your digital investments by linking to the ticket page. You should watch your stats on a daily basis and understand what they mean in advance of the fair so there is no lag time. When fairs use a ticketing software like AttendStar to sell tickets, everything integrates with the platform, which is great for reporting. You can see sales data tied to the website and ticketing, so it’s very seamless.”
Learn More About Beyond Spots & Dots
You can learn more about Melanie and Beyond Spots & Dots on the company website. “We handle management of the ticketing system, like AttendStar, for fairs from ticketing setup to website integration, to sales monitoring and reporting,” says Melanie. “Our white glove service provides a turnkey approach to marketing and ticketing, resulting in increased fair attendance.”