How Technology is Reshaping Patron Event Discovery


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Frank Sette's presentation from the Arts Reach National Conference in Los Angeles, CA October 12-14, 2012.

In this highly technological age, it can be challenging for arts organizations to find new ways to engage with patrons and potential patrons. Without a fresh marketing and sales strategy, an organization's ticket sales, audience growth and development will take a negative hit. What technology trends are driving patron event discovery today? How can an organization leverage these technology trends in their favor to reach a larger audience?

In this presentation, we will discuss mainstream and emerging technology trends that are drastically reshaping patron event discovery. Then, we'll discuss real-world examples of how arts organizations like yours are riding the technology wave to engage with patrons in new and exciting ways.

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  • How does Monica find out about your event? Can Monica find your website? Is your site easy to use? Can I easily find event info I’m looking for? Does event info entice me to attend? Can I buy tics online? Is it quick and easy to do from a laptop or cell phone? Is it easy to tell my friends about the event? Does you site allow me to share via email / Twitter / Facebook?
  • Then Word of mouth Newspaper Mail TV Now – mobile, social and technology driven Smartphones – mobile apps Internet Social sharing - Facebook, Twitter Email Groupon, Eventful, DoStuff, etc.
  • The good news… People still love to socialize and be entertained. The way they find events and how they share information about event with friends has just shifted. Don’t get left behind. To begin, we’ll touch on event discover today and technology trends. Then, to help understand these trends and how they’re impacting patron event discovery, we’ll cover some real-life case study examples at the end of the presentation.
  • Facebook Google Twitter Eventful – Find local events. DoStuff – Do stuff in your city. Goldstar - Go out more. Zvents – Discover things to do. Mobile apps for event discovery.
  • Consider these technology trends when you’re planning your marketing and patron outreach and you can: Reach new audiences Cultivate deeper relationships with patrons and potential patrons (especially via social media presence) Keep patrons informed Enhance your brand Sell more tickets!
  • Social sharing functionality amplifies your reach. Make sharing event info with others via social media dead simple. People like to share info about things they’re excited about. It’s also important for your organization to maintain an active social media presence. Be authentic and consistent. Your social media presence can help patrons stay in touch, and can help you get to know potential patrons. Know your audience and share useful content and interesting info with them. If they like what you have to say, they’ll share your message with their audience. When they do, be sure to say thank you!
  • 8 in 10 people have a mobile phone. Smartphone users use their phones for everything from texting, to browsing the internet, to work and play. Smartphones are most prevalent among 25-34 year olds. This age group has spending power! This is an opp to wow these patrons and grow them into dedicated, repeat patrons. To engage with these potential patrons, you need to play by their rules. A mobile-optimized online experience is a must! 91.4 million smartphones in the United States alone. -
  • We all use smartphones, often while we’re doing other things. People read things on screens while they are multi-tasking. This means you have less time to grab their attention. And to grab their attention your site must be mobile friendly. If you don’t mobile optimize, you lose potential ticket buyers who are frustrated because they can’t find info they’re looking for. You see 2 real-life examples here. The site on the left is NOT mobile optimized. The text is hard to read on a small phone or iPad browser. The buy tickets link is in a small sub menu that is hard to select. The version on the right is mobile optimized. Large, easy to read text and buttons that can be selected easily from a smart phone. The scroll menu up top is also easy to navigate so you can look at other pages to find the info you need. Bottom line: Don’t ignore mobile. If you do, you will lose potential patrons!
  • This is Peter Morville’s User Experience Honeycomb. What is user experience? It’s a combination of these things. Can patrons find your site on the web? Is your site easy to use? Pleasant to look at? Is helpful and enticing event info provided? Can patrons easily buy tickets in a few clicks from your website? Deliver a smooth, pleasant patron experience from your website and ticket purchase online, to interactions over the phone, via your social media presence, and in-person at events. Deliver an excellent experience from start to finish.
  • Vendini now offers complete websites that are fully integrated into the Vendini ticketing system. Vendini SiteLine is a way to auto-publish events to your website, boost sales, and increase website visitors. Benefits: Fresh new image and website. Save time by auto-publishing events to your website (no need to send code to a webmaster, wait for code to update). Provide a cutting edge mobile experience (smartphone and tablet optimized). Get complete control over your website content (secure, stable, flexible). Appear at the top of Google searches (SEO optimized). For more info on SiteLine: contact David Maurer, SiteLine Program Director . SiteLines websites in action: Napa Valley Opera House – Spokane Children’s Theatre – We’ll discuss a real-life case study for SiteLine and Napa Valley Opera House at the end of this presentation.
  • Active social media presence across multiple social media channels. Social media “dashboard” page on their website - aggregates announcements across all their channels. Reinforces “staying in touch” and deepening the relationship online via social media. Twitter –engage in dialogue with their audience. Retweet followers, reply to people who are talking about topics that relate to them. Facebook – active updates daily with lots of engaging, stimulating content. Frequently share images, performance videos, artist internviews, poll followers with weekly questions. Flickr – Post photos of the venue, events, artists. Again, visually exciting. Showcases look, feel, personality of the organization and the events. YouTube - Branded page with more than 600+ videos from past performances. Use video clips to plug upcoming events. Blog – blog posts include interesting performance related content to entice potential ticketbuyers. Also help improves SEO. They share posts with performers to encourage them to co-promote their events and spread the word to their social networks. Use social media and the web to share event “previews” and teaser content (rehersal videos, podcast interview with the producer, images of the costumes, etc.). This visual content gets people excited. Entices them to learn more about events, share content to spread the word, and buy tics. Also helps keep in touch with donors to remind them to continue to support the organization. Free Mobile App for smartphones – App includes an events tabs, news tab, YouTube tab, podcast tab, and venue info tab. Again, engaging content. Keeps them in their patrons’ pockets! Allows patrons to browse and buy event tics from their phone and has a “share” functionality so ticketbuyers can share events with friends via Twitter, Facebook, email, etc. Compliment their active social media + online presence with strong involvement in the local community at arts and charity events.
  • The theatre asks patrons, performers , staff and volunteers to share via social media. They flat out ask. “If you had fun at tonight’s performance, please help us spread the word and write us a yelp review / blog about our performance, do a FB update, tell your best friend.” Sometimes it doesn’t occur to patrons to share until you ask. If you deliver on the live-event experience, they’ll want to share! Closely monitor and reward social media super-patrons who share or donate! They know who these people are and cultivate relationships with these people online via social media, and in-person at events. Grow these relationships. Say thank you for donating and spreading the word about our events. Use traditional marketing + social media to appeal to older patrons and younger patrons. They send invites via snail mail, do email marketing, and do social media giveaways and promotion for events. Incorporate social media into events. For example, at a recent opening night party with the cast, they asked attendees to tweet about the event and share images of the event via social media. This spread the word about the theatre and performance to far more people than the theatre could've reached alone. To incentivize and reward attendees who shared via social media they gave away a pair of tickets to the top share.
  • Previous Site Challenges: Manual and time consuming to update events list on site: create an event in Vendini, then duplicate work to push the event to the site Not search engine optimized, poor search rankings Not mobile optimized Website Content Management System was outdated and painful not secure – got hacked challenging to maintain content not flexible – if they wanted to add additional pages to their site, it was challenging to do SiteLine pushed live in mid- September. SiteLine benefits: Big time save – Member can create a new event in Vendini and auto-publish it to the website without having to manually update code, or rely on a webmaster to update the site. Content Management System simple to maintain more secure - to fend of hackers more stable – won’t go down Social media sharing integration Mobile optimized website SEO site design to boost search rankings
  • Slides will be shared via Twitter and Facebook on Monday.
  • How Technology is Reshaping Patron Event Discovery

    1. 1. How Technology is Reshaping Patron Event Discovery Frank Sette Vice President, Sales Vendini, Inc.WWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    2. 2. About meWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    3. 3. About VendiniWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    4. 4. Consider the patron Meet Monica • Lives nearby • New forms of entertainment • Spending power to attend • Tech savvy & connected • Social & busy • Expects convenienceWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    5. 5. Monica’s Dilemma How do I find out about your event?WWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    6. 6. Monica’s Dilemma Can I find your website to learn more? Is your site easy to navigate?WWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    7. 7. Monica’s Dilemma Can I quickly find the event info? Does it entice me to buy tickets?WWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    8. 8. Monica’s Dilemma Can I buy tickets online? Is the purchase process convenient and secure?WWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    9. 9. Monica’s Dilemma Does your site enable easy social sharing so I can tell friends about the event?WWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    10. 10. Event DiscoveryWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    11. 11. My how the times have changed Source: 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    12. 12. Event Discovery TodayWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    13. 13. Technology Trends Social. Mobile. Patron user experience.WWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    14. 14. Why do these trends matter?  Reach new audiences.  Deepen relationships with donors and patrons.  Keep patrons informed.  Enhance your brand.  Sell more tickets.WWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    15. 15. Social sharing amplifies reach  Make event info easy to share  Maintain an active social media presence  Know and engage your fans  Reward patrons and donors who shareWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    16. 16. Mobile is a key part of daily life Source: 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    17. 17. Mobile optimization is key Make it easy.  To Find  To Use  To Buy  To ShareWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    18. 18. Web user experience matters  Easy to find info  Appealing presentation  Straightforward to buy  Professional appearance  Be consistent: web, social media, in-person Deliver an excellent experience. Image: 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    19. 19. The SiteLine web experience More about SiteLine: GetSiteLine@vendini.comWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    20. 20. Help Monica Find You 1. Mobile optimize. 2. Enable social sharing. Be social. 3. Deliver an exceptional patron experience (online, via social media, in-person).WWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    21. 21. Case Study: Performing Arts College Patrons: students, staff, local community Audience varied by age, spending power Weekly events: theatre, dance, live music  Active social media presence  Entice patrons with engaging content  Free mobile app  Foster offline community at local eventsWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    22. 22. Case Study: NY Musical Theatre Theatre in business for 40 years Patrons: 70% over 40 years old Weekly musical theatre events  Ask patrons to share  Cultivate super-patrons and super-donors  Say thank you online and in-person  Traditional marketing + social media  Encourage audience sharing via social media + mobile post-eventWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    23. 23. Case Study: Non-Profit Opera House Historic CA landmark Events: theatre, dance, concerts Outdated, hard to maintain site  Launched SiteLine website in Sept.  Social media integration boosts sharing  Mobile optimized and SEO  Improved CMS: maintainable, secure, stable  Saves time with auto-publishing eventsWWW.VENDINI.COM 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.
    24. 24. Thank You To learn more about how Vendini can help you reach more patrons visit Interested in SiteLine? Drop us a line at @vendini 1 (800) 901-7173 © 2012 VENDINI, INC.