This is information about partnering with Saffire Events, a company that provides online marketing software to the fair, festival and rodeo industry. Saffire has offices in Austin, Texas and Portland, Oregon.
Five years ago, most of us probably felt like we were spending a ton of time online. But internet usage has actually more than doubled since then. Even if you’re not following this trend, our bet is that your customers, the ones you most want to reach in order to grow, are following it.
Saffire was founded by Kendra Wright, who has been building sites since 1995.
In 2000, she joined forces with Aaron Pederson, Saffire’s technical director, and Jeremy Emerson, Saffire’s creative director.
Since then, Saffireaddedalmost a dozen more people, all to keep up with the ever-raising bar of online expectations.
Besides theirwork in the event industry, their team does work for consumer companies in a lot of industries. This gives a breadth of experience that they bring to marketing events online.
They do ongoing work for KEEN Footwear, their biggest client.
This isn’t exciting, but it’s all they can show you about what they’ve done for Nike. (They are a technology partner of Nike, working on very cool and exciting things that aren’t even released to the public yet.)
This is some of their work for Panasonic.
They have builtlots of games for Jeep.
… And Chrysler.
This is a fun custard chain in the Midwest.
In this day and age, the design of a website can be separated from its functionality. Saffire makes sure we implement the very best functionality for your site. And Saffire does updates approximately four to six times a year to make sure the functionality stays fresh for years to come, so we never have the upheaval of completely overhauling your website. Then design is layered on top of this great functionality. Here are some of the sites designed on the Saffire platform. Rodeo Austin was the first Saffire event, and this site was built a few years ago.
This is another Saffire event, the South Texas State Fair in Beaumont, Texas.
This is the Belton 4th of July Celebration, which has been listed as one of the top places to spend the 4th by USA Today.
This is a new event in Bryan, Texas that Saffire helped launch.
In 2011, Saffire Events was asked to partner with Western Fairs Association to redesign their convention website. This site was also built with on the Saffire platform, and it got great reviews and 94% more unique visitors than the year before!
Saffire is in this industry for the long haul, and they really feel this industry needs companies that are dedicated to improving it, so it can effectively grow. Saffire will help the event industry compete with all the other websites vying for our customers’ attention. As evidence of this commitment, Saffire partnered with IAFE to launch a website called Fairs Everywhere, which markets fairs and events to customers.
Saffire has won lots of awards, both in our industry and beyond.
Saffire helps with the organization of our homepage, which is obviously important to get people intrigued to delve into the website!Designing a homepage is a mix of an art and a science. There has been a lot of research on how people read webpages (or don’t read them, which is more accurate!). A homepageshouldhave a natural hierarchy, and the information should be in the shape of a capitalF, because that follows people's natural eye patterns. The most important information across the top, then down the left side and a little bit across the middle, where the featured event resides. Also, research shows people can't remember more than 5-7 items in a list, so there should not be more than 5-7 links in one place. Additionally a homepage page should have interactivity to involve the senses, like a music player to HEAR the event, a countdown to raise excitement about itand Photos to SEE it.
Besides the homepage, helping people get information to entice them to attend our event is the next most important thing. Saffire includes an interactive event schedule that makes it easy for event goers to find an event to attend. It includes event categories that helps people immediately see what the event is all about. “Our Picks” are automatically promoted at the top. Customers can also “Fan” events, post them by Facebook or Twitter, or email them to friends, getting them engaged and helping them to do our marketing for us. They can also create a custom event schedule and print it out to bring with them.
Event detail pages have everything your customers need to know to be enticed to attend!
General sponsors can be promoted on our homepage, as well as on a dedicated Sponsors page. Individual event sponsors can also be promoted on event detail pages.
We can useSaffire’s built-in ecommerce engine, or any other ticketing agent… or a combination of both!
We have a password-protected website to manage our content, making it easy to completely control our website without ever waiting on Saffire or anyone else to do it.
We can edit the features of our homepage, and even pre-schedule them to appear on certain dates ahead of time!
Wecan categorize events and reorder them anytime.
In fact, we can add any new page to our website, dragging and dropping text and photos, as well as spots for links, PDFs, sponsors, items for sale, forms and more… on every page.
Another huge time sink is keeping track of all the people that are important to our event. With Saffire, there are no more paper forms or PDF forms on our website that we keep in a binder or have to enter them into a spreadsheet or database. Re-entering data is not only inefficient and time-consuming, but it can also lead to data entry errors.With Saffire, we can easily create unlimited data forms that come to usviaemail, and we can also easily import them into a spreadsheet or a database without ever doing any data entry. Saffire stores all this data, and in 2012, we can start slicing and dicing thisdata about people associated with your event, so we canmarket to them better.
Mobile internet usage is growing at an incredible rate. Of the world’s 4 billion mobile phones, 1.08 billion are smart phones. On average, Americans spend 2.7 hours per day on their mobile phone. So clearly, our customers are already there, and it’s important that we GET THERE NOW to develop our presence. This next stat proves why: Mobile Commerce is increasing at 10% per year. If we build our presence now, people will feel safer buying from our site in the years to come.In addition, desktop computer usage is dwindling. By 2014 more people will access the internet by mobile than desktop. Women 35-54 are particularly active, and this is a key audience for fairs, since they bring families and control budgets!
We don’t release Saffire sites without Mobile. It is included in every installation.
Tablets are the #1 holiday gift in 2011. So having a tablet site is becoming even more important. And many feel that ecommerce statistics will be even more compelling on tablets than on smart phones, because of the increased screen size.
Tablet sites are also included with every Saffire installation.
Saffire includes all the training we need to be successful. Generally this is done in two training sessions.
Saffire also takes care of everything related to hosting and security, and it is all done with internationally recognized providers.
Saffire continues to grow, and Saffire events will continue to reap the benefits. Here are some of the things planned for 2012.
Rodeo Austin has been a great partner to develop Saffire into what it is today (and what it will become!).
This quoteepitomizes why Saffire exists…. To help elevate this industry by elevating its most important front door, the one so many people will see regardless of whether they ever come to ourevent (but hopefully they will!) – our website. And theydo it in such a way that makes our lives easier, because we’re empowered to manage it (and enjoydoing it!) without any outside help.
Software for Rodeos www.saffireevents.com About UsAaron JeremyPederson Emerson Technical Director Creative Director Experience: Experience: • Leads our team of • A classically-trained highly skilled artist with 16 years programmers experience in online • Finds the perfect design technology for the job • Makes everything we • A different breed of do beautiful techie – speaks • Not a prima donna English!Copyright 2011 – Saffire Events
Software for Rodeos www.saffireevents.com Four Hours of Training IncludedFIRST TRAINING SECOND TRAINING• Walk through of admin site • Walk through of other included – General site setup tools – Event Categories, Locations, Detail – Emailing tool pages – Wordpress blog • Items for sale, photos, sponsors, – Google Analytics PDFs, links, results, SEO info – Other Site Pages – Registration Forms Saffire also includes online help, – Reporting (Saffire Commerce) which can be reached from every page on your admin site.• Walk through of customer site, mobile site & tablet site – Homepage – Event Categories (Tabs) – About Us – Optional PagesCopyright 2011 – Saffire Events