3 Non-profit Event Trends to Get More Donations

  1. Personalized Pitches and Rebounds

Relationships were harder than ever to get going in 2019, and no, we don’t just mean Tinder. With the rise of easily affordable social media advertising and accessible video platforms like youtube, potential donors and members seem to require more media and even events before converting. There’s just so much content out there, a relationship takes more work, it takes more time. But time and time again, we’ve seen personalization cut straight to potential supporters. According to this 2017 Trends In Personalization research study, 96% of respondents said personalization helps build customer relationships, with only 45% agreeing that marketers actually succeed in personalization. What this means is that marketers are just blasting away with barely personalized content, and expecting that to instantly convert viewers. Not so. But how can you, as a non-profit event planner, take advantage of this trend?

Well, despite all that doom and gloom, email is very much alive and kicking and in 2019, and poised to grow. Largely because of personalization. Sure, it takes more time nowadays to convert attendees to donors, but all that means is the relationship will be stronger when it blooms. This requires patience. And an email mailing list is the ultimate way for event planners to put patience to use. Even if an attendee at one of your non-profit events doesn’t donate, doesn’t become a member –  if you can get them to join your mailing list, you’ve still taken a big step forward. Because from there you can send personalized messages to the attendees, encouraging them to come back and then donate, at which point the contribution will certainly be larger than it would have been. Not to mention a long-term relationship with attendees greatly enhances recurring donations, which have been shown to be increasingly for nonprofits time and time again. A mailing list with a sequenced order, or even a simple recurring system like Donorbox, bypasses the need to bombard potential donors with paid advertising and content in search of lump sum donations. Instead, free and personalized emails do the trick. A powerful mailing list, or any other tool that provides traffic analytics, also lets you make the pitch personalized. You wouldn’t ask thousands from a student attendee struggling to get through school, just like you wouldn’t ask $10 from an attendee with millions in the bank. Many sign up software like MailChimp or even ClickFunnel provide auto-generated profiles from your signups and traffic and leads, allowing you to do better research for more personalized asks. This also allows you to segment your market, understanding the different sources of traffic, the different segments of your audience, and then messaging them separately. You wouldn’t market to a twenty-five-year-old and a sixty-five-year-old in the same way, right? You also wouldn’t want to tell them your nonprofit’s story in the same way, or even present the same story. Not only will personalizing your messaging increase your conversions and open rates, but it will also improve your nonprofit’s reputation to all your targeted demographics.

2) Time for Tech

Net technology has been revolutionizing non-profit donations, both in the donation process and demographics. First, with mobile increasingly popular for donations, digital wallets like Paypal and Google Pay are a must for non-profits. Not only do digital wallets make donations easy, they act as social proof, as other users can see who has donated. Think Amazon review, only better. If your non-profit has not set up a public digital wallet and doesn’t have that on their website, now would be the time.

One of the largest demographics of digital wallet junkies is Generation Z, young people born after 1996. Aside from being very close to coming into financial freedom, a 2017 Global Trends Report said that Gen Z members are “interested in giving to many different causes… top causes being youth, animals and human services.” So not only will capturing generation z’s attention be key in the coming “it” decade, but it will be especially important for nonprofits. Generation Z grew up on the internet, surrounded by seamless mobile technology, the wide web at their fingertips. Unsurprisingly, members of Gen Z spend a huge amount of time on their phones, many conducting all transactions on mobile. This means it will be absolutely essential to have your non-profits site and even donation page mobile optimized. Generation Z also happens to be very visual, responding to pictures and visual storytelling more than other generations. When marketing to gen Z, it makes sense to take advantage of picture-based social media platforms and storytelling media, like Instagram, Snapchat, Youtube, and infographics in emails.

Going in the opposite direction, voice assistants have skyrocketed in popularity, AI practically a household norm. According to a Nielsen study, almost 24% of US Households have smart speakers like Amazon Echo. This isn’t just a Gen z thing – this is a future thing. How can your non-profit event take advantage of the artificial intelligence trend? Well, it doesn’t have to be with some fancy smart speaker or expensive virtual assistant. No, you can benefit just by making simple chatbots. A chatbot allows you to answer basic even questions through your non-profit website, app, or even on popular platforms like Facebook Messenger. A chatbot is a wonderful way to streamline this process and screen for common questions about your non-profit events, while also coming off as more personalized than an FAQ page. This can also give your staff more time and resources to tackle bigger and more complex questions. 

Another wonderful way to take advantage of new events technology is in ticket sales. According to an Eventbrite study, the majority of money raised by non-profits comes from ticket sales. So as a non-profit event planner, you’re looking for a free way to sell as many event tickets as possible, to raise money and promote your mission of change. However, most ticket sales software like Eventbrite or Ticketmaster take huge portions of sales, cost too much, promote competing events, and eclipse your own brand. You can use Sparxo to post your event and sell tickets for your event anywhere, letting you sell tickets online with no redirects – all for free!

  • Import your guest lists and sales lists from other systems
  • aggregate all of your customer data in one place
  • Keep 100% of your ticket sales
  • White Label, greatly improves SEO and Brand

 

3) Behold, the Awesomeness of Auctions

Auctions have always been a staple for non-profit fundraisers, but 2019 has seen auctions undergo a serious glow up, with radical new formats and attendee experience.

 

When you think auction, what’s the first thing that pops into your head? Probably a fancy hall with puffy seats, a fast-talking auctioneer, with attendees throwing out numbers at the top of their lungs. If you’re a tad more familiar with auctioning, you might also think about silent auctions, a low-stress alternative to the former. Silent auctions are also quite popular, according to Winspire, “82% of benefit auctioneers reported at least 3 out of 4 events they worked included a silent auction.” A silent auction can be a great way to get more of your attendees involved, enticing those who may be intimidated by a live rowdy auction. But how are silent auctions going to change for non-profit event planners? They seem to be shorter, with “65% of [Nielsen] respondents observing the number of items included in the average silent auction declining.” So non-profit event planners are opting to save time and money by auctioning fewer items, saving money on both items and hosting time. After all, with silent auctions and the power of the internet, bids can be placed long before an event starts IRL, the opening time of silent auctions set sometimes months in advance. And in recent years, online auctions have also been streamlining auctions and their budgets, eliminating lengthy agendas, dull speeches, and of course all the hefty costs of putting on an auction, like catering and rent.

 

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TOP 10 FUNDRAISING TRENDS FOR 2019

Top Ten Fundraising Trends 2019

Charity events are not going anywhere – everyone loves to party for a good cause. But understanding some of the current trends in fundraising can help you amplify your cause, target the right donors, and create attractive ways for people to give.

  1. Go for the high earners.

Tax policies in the U.S. have shifted, making it less likely middle and lower-class individuals will be donating – and they’ll be donating less. Researchers at Indiana University predict that organizations will be more dependent than ever on individuals with high net worth – partly because they’ll still see big benefits on their taxes when they do.  Still, the outlook is positive for individual donations from all levels: giving in this sector is predicted to rise by 3.4%. 

2. Use insight into diverse communities. 

People with different backgrounds and identities tend to give differently. According to Philanthropy Outlook 2019-2020, a report published by researchers at Indiana University’s Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, African Americans are more likely to give back to their own communities than whites. They are also more likely to give to basic needs charities than the overall population of high-net-worth donors (72% of African Americans versus 54% of all donors).  Researchers have also noted differences between male and female donors, and generational differences as well, with women more likely to actively volunteer and to prefer impact investing at a higher rate, and older women more likely to choose just a few causes to support. Find more information in their report, available at www.philanthropyoutlook.com.

3. Harness social media for peer-to-peer fundraising. 

If you’re on Facebook, you’ve probably seen people asking for money for a cause on their birthday. Giving on Facebook is easy, and having a friend recommending a cause employs one of the most successful, tried and true fundraising tactics – peer-to-peer fundraising. It’s not all just Facebook charity requests, though. People are running online games and competitions – think virtual race- to raise money for their favorite causes. Make sure you have a strong online presence, with easy-to-navigate pages and a convenient method for accepting donations to take advantage of this trend. 

4. Set up a recurring giving program. 

Donors who give to recurring donation programs – where they give a set amount monthly – tend to give more on average than one-time donors. Recurring donations are ways people who aren’t in the high-net-worth category can give on a budget. Recurring giving also gives organizations a way to keep in regular contact with their donors, giving them reports on where their money goes, which helps retain donors by creating a deeper connection with the cause.

5. Jump into virtual reality. 

Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are being employed by businesses, schools, and organizations to enhance and extend their mission. VR can provide ways to connect people to the causes they care about; to explain a procedure that is being funded, and to give insight into the work your organization does.  A study in Nonprofit Management and Leadership which looked at the effects of using virtual reality on donor behavior found that donors were more engaged through VR and therefore more likely to give. 

6. Use the right tool for communication. 

Email is still one of the best ways to engage donors. That’s because people are often overwhelmed by social media and often dismiss what comes up in their feed, and it can be hard to find later. Email can be personalized but also very efficient, and it can be easily forwarded and shared. Crafting attention-getting emails that are mobile-friendly are key. 

7. Pursue new opportunities for corporate giving. 

Corporate giving is hot. As corporations fight for talent, they are looking for ways to present their businesses as socially minded and ethical, and engaging in a charitable cause is a popular way to do this. Some places of business also encourage volunteers to donate their time – sometimes giving them time off to do so. This can be a great way to build a relationship with individuals as well as the business. 

8. Build a planned giving program. 

Long popular with big charities, more and more nonprofits are realizing it’s to their benefit to build programs for planned giving. “Small and mid-sized nonprofits can no longer afford to ignore planned giving, and many don’t know how simple it can be to get started,” notes the National Council of Nonprofits. 

9. Chat with a bot. 

Organizations that use chatbots – digital artificial intelligence responders – recognize them as invaluable tools for connecting with potential donors and volunteers, whether they want to know how to donate, need help buying a ticket to the latest event, or directing them to more information. Chatbots are programmed to run with programs like Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and Slack and can even tell stories to help engage viewers – as Charity:Water does with their Facebook messenger bot, which enables viewers to follow a girl as she searches for water. Chatbots can help save money and reduce staff time answering questions.They are also a gold mine for data, notes nonprofit expert and consultant Allison Fine in The Chronicle of Philanthropy

 

10. Show ‘em what you got. 

Donors always like to know where their money is going and see it make a difference. Charity:Water started out with a party where everyone donated $20 each. All the attendees received information about how their $20 went directly towards providing a community with clean water – and as a result, donations started pouring in. So make sure you’re not only sharing the story of what’s needed but also share how donors have made an impact. This might include videos, photographs, interactive storytelling and Q & A, as well as providing hard facts and figures. Fortunately, in today’s world of a wealth of data and inexpensive digital tools that quickly connect people anywhere in the world, transparency is easier than ever. 

You can apply many of these tips to planning events, too. Chatbots can make it easier for people to ask questions and connect, and understanding your target demographics better can help ensure the right people are seeing your promotions. 

 

Another key to solid fundraising? Having the right event ticketing platform to sell your tickets online. Sparxo is designed to make it easy to reach and track your attendees, so you can follow up for other programs, like planned giving and recurring donations. Unlike other platforms, Sparxo puts your cause and your event front and center without impacting your bottom line. 

Sparxo harnesses the latest tech to make it easier on you and your followers, translating to more dollars for your cause. 

While most ticket sales software like Eventbrite or Ticketmaster take huge portions of sales, cost too much, promote competing events, and eclipse your own brand. You can use Sparxo to post your event and sell tickets for your event anywhere, letting you sell tickets online with no redirects – all for free! Plus, Sparxo offers a non-profit program where the company makes a donation.

  • Import your guest lists and sales lists from other systems
  • Aggregate all of your customer data in one place
  • Keep 100% of your ticket sales
  • White Label, greatly improves SEO and Brand

 

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4 EVENT IDEAS FOR FITNESS CLASSES

 

4 Event Ideas for Fitness Classes

  1. Master Meet-Ups

 A wonderful way to boost your brand is by partnering with another brand. Celebrity trainers and influencers often meet up with their followers, be it for a Bootcamp or just to engage with their audience. Many of these influencers are eager to partner with a fitness event or venue planner to streamline their event, someone who can get their equipment, space, and safety accommodations set up long in advance. For example, Brandon Carter often runs Bootcamp meetups from his youtube followers in parks and outdoor venues, where getting fitness materials and permits can be tricky. This is where you come in. Reach out to local influencers you know host meetups and propose a partnership. You can also offer them exposure, help teaching, and even some free materials. Partnering on influencer meetups will not only boost your class’s reputation, but it will draw fans of the guest to your class, improving your visibility and attendance.

Hosting fitness supply meetups is also a great avenue to take advantage of another brand in your niche. Many sporting goods and fitness merchandising stores like Sports Basement organize community events with various fitness-geared activities, sometimes even fitness classes. Offering to teach a guest class at these events is a great way to introduce yourself to an audience of fitness enthusiasts while increasing your visibility via the sporting goods stores advertising and promotions. 

  1. Meal Prep Masterclass

Diet is as, if not more important than exercise. Odds are that your class attendees are just as eager to learn about clean meal prep as they are exercises. Consider hosting a class on preparing healthy, easy to make foods, either taught by yourself from what foods have worked for you, or by partnering with a cooking or nutrition instructor. Partnering with a nutritionist could not only boost attendance but could introduce your class to the nutritionists’ clientele.

  1. Bring it with Bootcamps! 

Hosting a Bootcamp is a great supplement for your fitness class, improve awareness, and even raise some extra funds for your class. Bootcamp group exercises, separate from your class, can offer an opportunity for attendees who may have missed some classes to catch up, and for those who’ve never attended a class but may be interested in a sample. 

Bootcamps are also incredibly high yield for the amount of energy put in, both for planners and participants. All you need to start a Bootcamp is a logo, access to the web, and a park. Advertise your Bootcamp online, and walla, you have yourself a proper Bootcamp. You don’t even really need permits if attendance is low, depending on your city that could be 20 people or less. Consider pulling the old ‘We’re just a group of friends working out in the park, officer!’ if anyone asks. Point being, Bootcamps cost almost nothing to plan but can bring in significant income for your fitness business. But the buck doesn’t stop there. No, Bootcamps are incredible for attendees as well, a rare opportunity to experience both one-on-one attention on their exercise form and regime while being pushed to their limits.  A great way to encourage a commitment from attendees is via theme. For example, New Years Bootcamps are extremely popular because they empower attendees with the exercises and routines they’ll need to achieve their fitness resolutions, whether with a trainer or by themselves. You could also focus on imparting information at your Bootcamp, attendees leaving with key nutritional and exercise knowledge rather than just muscle burn. Goals are born at Bootcamp. One taste of proper exercise, of pushing themselves past perceived limitations, and Bootcamp attendees will be sure to be signing themselves up for more classes and more programs. If nothing else, they’ll have learned low-maintenance exercise techniques they can do themselves, anytime, with almost no equipment. It really is a win-win.

But what software will you use to sell tickets to the Bootcamp, or even sell tickets for your class? As a fitness event planner, you’re looking for a free way to sell as many class tickets as possible and keep as much revenue as you can. However, most ticket sales software like Eventbrite or Ticketmaster take huge portions of sales, cost too much, promote competing events, and eclipse your own brand. You can use Sparxo to post your event and sell tickets for your event anywhere, letting you sell tickets online with no redirects – all for free!

  • Import your guest lists and sales lists from other systems
  • Aggregate all of your customer data in one place
  • Keep 100% of your ticket sales
  • White Label, greatly improves SEO and Brand

 

  1. Run a Fun Run

A fun run is exactly that – fun. Even if your class isn’t explicitly about cardio workouts, helping to host a fun run, an informal run for charitable purposes, is a great way to go the extra mile in raising awareness for your fitness class. 

Fun runs are typically geared toward a particular charity, with lots of attention and care put into their planning. This leaves you two options – reach out to a smaller fun run and offer to help them organize, usually by volunteering or by creating your own run. Assisting an existing run will be far less of a time commitment, and can still give you a great chance to engage with your class attendees, acquire new students, potentially establish a permanent partnership. If you can find a fun run that may be in need of your class supplies or expertise, you could greatly enhance your exposure by offering them a partnership, donating your time as a teacher and supplies in exchange for the run promoting your class to their attendees. Also, by encouraging your class attendees to attend an existing fun run, you’ll get exposure to their friends and plus-ones, many of whom will likely have a similar interest in fitness classes. 

Your other option is to create your own fun run. While this is a much larger time commitment, it can greatly enhance your visibility as a teacher. Like with most events, success will all depend on proper planning. Your first step will be to set a goal for the run, typically charitable. Then you’ll want to put together a capable team, ideally with event planners who’ve previously assisted with fun runs. With a team and a goal, you’ll then have to iron out the details, like venue, funding, and supplies. Here’s a great guide on how to handle all the logistics of hosting a fun run. 

One of the secrets to a successful fun run is your theme. As an event planner for this run, you want to narrow down your target audience to a specific niche, that way you’ll know how to make an event appeal to them. Is this going to be an epic professional race, with high tech times? A stroller-accessible run for families? An office-getaway for corporate employees? The better you understand your target attendees, the better equipped you’ll be to design your event and eventually market the event as something that these attendees actually want to go to. With this in mind, brainstorm a theme, a kind of overarching message and style to your event that aligns with your audience’s interest. Not only will this spice up attendee experience, but it will differentiate your fun run, standing out from what’s already a very large crowd. IIn the end, whether you choose to host or help out, market to families or pros, fun runs will help your brand and a good cause. 

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WHY AFROTECH SELLS OUT TICKETS

Why Afrotech Sells Out Tickets

More than 4,000 techies attended last year’s groundbreaking Afrotech conference, a meeting of minds that aims to connect founders, techies, and employees with the fastest-growing startups. Tickets completely sold out. AfroTech features panels like “Being a Digital Brand.” Surprisingly, Afrotech is only 3 years old, founded in 2016. Since then attendance has nearly doubled each year. So how does Afrotech pull this off? How do they sell out tickets, creating a major movement in just 3 years?

  1. Superb Speakers

Afrotech’s 2018 conference featured a wide variety of amazing guest speakers, from Daymond John of Sharktank to rapper Common. Clearly, Afrotech doesn’t skimp on their speakers, bringing in speakers who are both passionate about African Americans in tech and well known in their field. Event producers are reminded of the difference passionate influencers and partners can make for marketing and brand. Not only can it boost attendance like it does for Afrotech, but it can also seriously improve your brand and lead to incredible new connections for your business.

  1. Excitement over effort

Afrotech understands the power of a good carrot, sticking a wide variety of activities for event-goers to choose to spend their time on. Just about everyone can remember a one-size-fits-all conference where time seems to pass at a snail’s pace, a conference where attendees shuffled from speech to speech en-masse with zero enthusiasm? Yeah, Afrotech is not that kind of conference. Afrotech advertises a diverse array of speakers in radically different sectors, from software to entrepreneurship to artists. Plus it encourages attendee interaction. Who knows, the group of brilliant techies shaking hands exchanging contact info in the corner could turn into the next tech giant. This attendee passion and interaction keeps the atmosphere electric, with attendees never feeling like spectators, always in control of the experience. Not to mention the free swag from company recruiters and the possibility of even snagging an interview at a major tech company. 

Afrotech strives to keep all their attendees engaged at all times, a major leg up in the conference world and an even bigger leg up in ticket sales. Event producers can make like Afrotech by checking in with attendees, providing them with enough choices to make them feel like they’re in control and taken care of.

  1. Incentive and Opportunity

Conferences like AfroTech encourages greater black representation and community in tech, tackling key social and economic issues that don’t get enough discussion in the corporate world. But beyond that, Afrotech offers individual attendees opportunity, a shot at pitching to investors and even big tech recruiters. Amazon, Stripe, Salesforce and other tech companies sent recruiters to the conference, interacting with attendees and actively recruiting black talent. With many companies struggling with pipelines and diverse hiring, conferences like AfroTech are an incredible resource to find diverse and talented individuals to strengthen their teams. But for attendees, the opportunity to network with big tech recruiters is often a big enough reason alone to attend, even without amazing hands-on panels and afterparties.

Afrotech’s networking possibilities can mirror event planners incentivizing event attendance, often with a free gift or one-on-one time with an influencer. For example, the Writer’s Digest Conference in NYC offers attendees the opportunity to pitch to agents, the conference providing both writing workshops and the opportunity to sing a book deal. This sort of opportunity and individual incentive can really mean the difference between good and great sales, and should not be neglected by event producers aiming to sell out tickets.

Photo Sources Cited:

  1. Afrotech. “Afrotech 2017.” Afrotech 2017, Sparxo, https://e.sparxo.com/Afrotech17?rn=instagram.
  2. Afrotech. “Afrotech 2018.” Afrotech 2018, Sparxo, 

https://e.sparxo.com/Afrotech18?rn=instagram.

  1. Afrotech. “Afrotech 2019.” Afrotech 2019, Sparxo, 

https://e.sparxo.com/Afrotech19?rn=instagram.

  1. “Videos – Afrotech.” Videos – Afrotech, Afrotech 2019, https://afrotech.com/videos, https://assets-jpcust.jwpsrv.com/thumbnails/saw4mwfp-720.jpg.
  2. “Experience – Afrotech, Oakland Convention Center.” Experience – Afrotech, Afrotech,

https://experience.afrotech.com/.

 

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How to Sell Out Fitness Classes

1. Slay Sales with Software

Trying to sell tickets to your fitness classes? Your first stop is the web. Duh, you’re online now, aren’t you? And isn’t ‘use social media’ what everyone else preaches these days? Don’t worry, we’ll give you simple, practical steps you can take action on immediately. Right now, you have the potential to access millions of Facebook users, totally free. Invite all your Facebook friends to your class by creating a Facebook Event. Ask your friends to share the class’s Facebook event, and consider reaching out to influencers (especially those you already follow or interact with!) for a share. 

If you have the funds, consider running targeted Facebook advertisements for class. Target people in your area who have attended similar classes, limiting the scope of your ad to appear only to those who are very likely to potential sign up. While Facebook ads take a little bit of capital to run, they’re comparatively much cheaper than most advertising and publicizing freelancers, meaning you’ll get a good bit of bang for your buck. You also get to set the budget of the ad, meaning this is sort of paid advertising is likely more accessible than you think. We also recommend you not only utilize social media like Instagram and Twitter, but we recommend you interact on those platforms, personally liking and responding to comments. Over time this could build relationships that turn into signups.

We also recommend you promote your classes by developing and using a Mailing List. This an excellent way to keep in touch with past attendees, while also pulling new students. Think about it. If you could get everyone who’s ever been to a class with you or your friends, and you could get them coming back, your attendance would be in great shape, right?

An email list is all about establishing a personal relationship with potential attendees. Often, a personal connection makes the difference between attending your class rather than a better-known chain class like Soulcylce or Equinox. A regular, friendly email is a great way to establish this relationship while seriously boosting retention. First, you’ll need to set up a newsletter system with a service like MailChimp is free up to 2,000 contacts and unlimited emails. This will help you craft personalized messages and allow anyone interested in your event to stay up to date. Then, reach out personally to friends and past students who you think may be interested. Then ask them if they’d like to join your email list, for regular updates and potential freebies. Even if they aren’t ready to commit to signing up for your class yet, getting regular emails with class updates could change that, while also spreading awareness.

You should also consider using a free website builder like Weebly or Strikingly to create a landing page for your class, where you can put key info and promotional pictures. A personal site will keep all your information in one place, plus you’ll get more eyes on your brand, a key advantage when selling tickets. This helps your overall SEO. 

But how will you sell class tickets? As a fitness event planner, you’re looking for a free way to sell as many class tickets as possible and keep as much revenue as you can. However, most ticket sales software like Eventbrite or Ticketmaster take huge portions of sales, cost too much, promote competing events, and eclipse your own brand. You can use Sparxo to post your event and sell tickets for your event anywhere, letting you sell tickets directly from your website with no redirects – all for free!

  • Import your guest lists and sales lists from other systems
  • aggregate all of your customer data in one place
  • Keep 100% of your ticket sales
  • White Label, greatly improves SEO and Brand

 

  1. Offer Value Upfront (Freebies!)

Free gets people in the door. Excellent quality of service keeps them coming. As a fitness event planner, a great way to get people into your class is to offer free ‘value’ upfronts. These are things like offering a free trial for a day or giving out branded water bottles. 

You could also stress something valuable they’ll gain in just one day or weak. Will they learn a skill? Become more flexible? Advertise these tangible, upfronts on your events page, and you’re sure to increase class signups.

  1. Partnerships

Leverage platforms like a Class Pass and Dabble get you new users and then convert them into members of your own gym. Using these sites as ‘partners’ will dramatically increase your sales. See, hundreds of thousands of potential attendees are on these websites, already searching for you. Rather than you actively seeking attendees, these platforms will allow you to connect with people actively seeking you, making things much easier. Leads coming from sites like Dabble will convert at much higher rates as you have the ability to screen for specific interests, like fitness and fitness classes. 

Another successful partnership strategy is inviting in influencer or even celebrity teachers. Can you find a fitness influencer in your city to teach a class? You can offer exposure and a stipend in exchange. Guest teachers will not only boost your class’s reputation, but it will draw fans of the guest to your class, improving your visibility and attendance.

Sponsorship could also be a route for your fitness classes. This doesn’t even necessarily have to be monetary sponsorship – a local company providing free health drinks, free fitness mats, or even just their logo could make your event considerably more attractive to attendees.  If you can find a company that will benefit from sponsoring your class, you could greatly enhance your budget for advertisements and form a long-lasting partnership that helps both parties. You’ll want to build a list of potential sponsors, businesses whose customers’ interests align with your class. These would be things like sporting goods stores, energy drink companies, or even clothing lines. Reach out to the companies on your list with a friendly email or call, explaining why this company would benefit from sponsoring your fitness class. These are usually things like increased exposure and brand awareness. You can find a sample event sponsorship request letter here.

  1. Rave Reviews

Great reviews will make a big difference in selling your fitness class. Not only will most potential attendees search for reviews, in 2019 many potential attendees will search for classes on reviews sites. Much of the traffic to your event page will come directly from sites like Yelp and FourSquare, attendees first impression of your class coming from reviews. And you want to make a good first impression, right? 

The key is to have as many high-quality reviews as possible. Create a Yelp page, a FitResever page, a Business.com page – as many review sites as you can. Then reach out to previous attendees of your classes and ask for reviews, as well as offering freebies or a discount for current attendees who write a review. Not only will this boost your visibility, but your credibility as well, which will seriously improve your sales.

 

Data Shows These Non-profit Events Raise the Most ...

  1. Food, Wine, and Music events

“Eat, Drink, and Be Merry!” Data shows events geared around those three items will sell the most tickets. Food and drink, especially those with music, consistently rank #1 for tickets sold for a variety of reasons. First, food and drink events are dependable, and have a kind of ‘brand’ – most everyone has attended this sort of event, and has a good idea of what they’re in for. Food, wine, and music events also give attendees a reason to mingle and chat, providing excellent networking and team-building opportunities. People know food and drink events, and even better, they know they like them.

Food and drink events range from traditional sit-down dinners to exciting food fairs, all of which are extremely popular. For example, San Francisco’s Plate by Plate sells their tickets out by taking the best chefs and restaurants in the city and bringing them all under one roof. Attendees can go from booth to booth trying different a variety of exciting different flavors and cuisines. Compass Family Service’s annual “Toast & Taste” event follows a similar format, bringing a diverse line up of food and drink into their venue, where attendees get to taste different foods at each station. On top of all that, Compass Family Service adds games and music, spicing up their events. Attendees are never disappointed.

As a non-profit event planner, the success of food, wine, and music-based events means that this is a safe, guaranteed-to-sell event type. And what’s more? Unlike many themed events, these events tend to cost less, meaning you can charge less for tickets and host with less effort. But you’re not off the hook yet! You’ll still need to secure a unique venue, reach out to potential attendees, sponsors, and entertainers, not to mention optimize the event for donations. This checklist will help you start.

  1. Niche Music Concerts

Rock on, music fans! Niche concerts are a close second in most tickets sold, attendees coming en masse to see their favorite bands and performers.

The keyword in niche music events is niche. As a non-profit event planner, your goal isn’t to get the biggest, most popular musician or group, but rather to find one that caters to a very specific audience. It’s extremely difficult for a non-profit to compete with music promoters and industry insiders over the most popular bands. But by focusing on the niche and indie community, you’ll not only have better luck finding performers, but you’ll also capture a specific market both interested in your performer and giving to charitable causes. Namely, your charitable cause. 

  1. Casino Games

The odds are in your favor for luck-based event types! Casino Game event types consistently sell out their tickets, event planners hiring a third party casino to bring in games like Black Jack, Poker, and roulette. The casino provides attendees with chips, as well as trained staff, like dealers and servers. 

Combining food, fun, and a healthy amount of gambling is sure to draw in attendees and get open their wallets for your nonprofit’s cause.

  1. Cooking Classes 

Cook up impressive ticket sales with a cooking class. NPO’s who host cooking classes bring attendees together, teach them how to make tasty meals, not to mention digging into said tasty meals. Who wouldn’t want a piece of that kind of event? 

Cooking classes sell so many tickets because they come across as worth paying for. A cooking class is a clear value proposition. Attendees know they’ll get something out of the event, namely food and cooking skills with the added value of knowing they are also supporting a good cause. Many non-profit events that tend to do less impressively with ticket sales forget to offer something in exchange for the ticket, beyond simply donating to your nonprofit’s cause.

  1. Niche conference with well-known guest speakers

Bring your attendees together for a valuable conference with speakers they care about, and you’re sure to sell plenty of tickets. The key here, like with the cooking class, is to offer a value proposition. Why are attendees supposed to buy tickets for your conference? The answer that sells the most tickets is well-known speakers.

Invite a powerful influencer or figure relevant to your attendees to come speak at your event. But how I afford a powerful speaker,” you ask. “My non-profit is on a budget!” Never fear, because many speakers, if picked carefully, will be happy to speak for free. Be sure to target potential speakers relevant to your attendees and in your niche. This way, the speakers you contact will have a genuine passion for your cause and may be willing to speak free. The last key is to approach speakers, plural. Remember, attendees won’t read rejection letters, and it only takes one yes. Here’s a sample speaker request email. 

 

As a non-profit event planner, you’re busy with scheduling, your venue, clients, and spreading your message of change. When it comes to ticket sales software, you’re looking for convenience and often pick the first software you hear. However, most ticket sales software take huge portions of sales, cost too much, promote competing events, and eclipse your own brand. You can use Sparxo to post your event and sell tickets for your event anywhere, letting you sell tickets directly from your website with no redirects – all for free!

 

  • Import your guest lists and sales lists from other systems
  • aggregate all of your customer data in one place
  • Keep 100% of your ticket sales
  • Sell event tickets online
  • White Label, greatly improves SEO and Brand

 

6. Maritime events with food and drinks

Set sail for excellent ticket sales with a submarine or cruise non-profit event! An event on the water gives hesitant attendees an excellent reason to attend, as the novelty of water tugs at attendees’ sense of adventure. Not to mention cruises and sub trips tend to be expensive outside the world of non-profit events, meaning attendees are sure to understand why they’re paying for event tickets.

Getting on a boat transports attendees to a whole new world, a world shaped and branded by the non-profit company hosting. Their cruise will be meticulously planned and tailored by your own company, creating an intimate relationship with your non-profit and attendees. Pulling attendees from their traditional land-loving-lives will also get them interacting amongst themselves, bringing them closer together. 

  1. Kid events and classes 

NPO’s aren’t kidding around with kid events. Our final ticket-selling event type is kid’s events and classes. These are events like BSA Foundation’s KidsBuild! program, where kids are brought into a makers space, where they get to learn science and engineering principles hands-on. Sprout’s Cooking Club is another great example, where kids 7 and up learn to make healthy food and have fun doing it.

The obvious reason kid events clock in last on our list is that not everyone interested in non-profit events has kids, and less would be interested in bringing them along (Or even able! Kids can be stubborn.) But why are these events successful?

First, childcare is expensive, and if your event is well planned and marketed, potential attendees may be accustomed to paying for kid events and will be happy to buy tickets to your kids class or event like they would for any other kid event, with the added bonus of supporting a good cause. Second, parents and guardians want to impart strong value on their kids, and exposing them to non-profit events early can be a great way to do this. Last, non-profit kid events can just be an incredible experience for the kids, allowing them to hang with kids their own age, away from the classroom. Generation X parents have been shown again and again to value events where they get to spend time with and away from their kids. Whichever option your event chooses, whether giving families some alone time while their kids take part in the event or if families get to experience the event with their kids, many attendees will be happy to buy tickets.

 

 

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HOW TO GET DONATIONS FOR YOUR NON-PROFIT EVENT

How to Get Donations for Your Non-Profit Event

Non-Profit event planners are all about service. After all, they exist to help people. So it’s no surprise that they maintain this commitment to service is found in their events, especially fundraising events, creating the best experience for attendees they can. But how do non-profit event planners actually get donations from these stellar events? How can they sell tickets, get attendees on subscriber plans, and take pledges? Never fear, because Sparxo will share 6 ways to get donations for your Non-Profit events.

  1. Set Goals for Your Event and Attendees

The first step to a successful non-profit event is to set clear goals. Give yourself a benchmark for donation success, and don’t keep it private – share it with your attendees. Put this in advertisements, posters, and announcements, to make it clear your organization and the event’s attendees are all working toward this same fundraising goal.

You’ll also need to set a budget for your non-profit event, a goal for event spending. You obviously need to raise funds beyond the amount you’re going to spend. A clear budget goal will help keep your costs in perspective and get more for your money. Make sure to include things like venue, seating, entertainment, food, drink, as well as any unforeseen costs. You’ll want to pad your budget to account for the unexpected.

Last, give the event-goers a goal beyond the fundraising goal. Give them an activity, a game, participatory entertainment – something to keep them engaged. Simply putting people in a room with food is often not enough. Professional development, networking, or even meet other singles are all excellent attendee goals. 

  1. Make it fun

Get donations is not a valid event theme. Satisfied attendees open their wallets. If you want event-goers to donate, you want them to have a good time.

One of the best ways to make event-goers enjoy their experience is to get them to be social. These social-theme fundraisers like speed-dating or meet and greets are a fun way to expand upon the traditional benefits dinner format.

Another great way to get event-goers to have a good time is by offering value upfront. Provide them with free food, free drinks, free entertainment, party favors, and other goodies. Make it clear you’ve spared no expense on their behalf.

  1. Make it Personal

One of the most time-honored means of fundraising is establishing a personal connection. This means making your attendees feel special, that they matter.

The first step here is to tailor each individuals’ experience as best you can. These are things like personalizing emails, personalizing cards, and creating intentional seating cards. You’ll also want to frequently check in with attendees and get their feedback.

Then, when making your fundraising appeals, you’ll also want to keep it personal. Stress how their contribution could specifically help another person. It pays to have examples of your nonprofits work to show them, and explain how by contributing, they will be creating results like the ones your non-profit has achieved in the past. Subscription-based calls to action are very effective here, especially coupled with pictures and details.

For example, the Scottish homeless charity Cyrenians created a digital chatbot ‘Alex’ designed to inform people about how easy it is to become homeless and the struggles they face. The ‘Ask Alex’ chatbot not only gave their cause a clear human element, but it allowed users to see exactly how they could help people like Alex, and how their contributions mattered.


 

  1. Make it easy

When it comes to donations, convenience is king. Make it as simple as possible for attendees to donate, with credit card readers and pledges available at your event. Many attendees will only feel inspired to donate at the event, when emotions are high – don’t let these slip away. A little logistics can mean the difference between a donation and a forgotten donation. 

You’ll also want to consider the venue. Pick someplace affordable, that meets your needs. Will it accommodate all your attendees? Is it affordable? Some venues might be willing to discount or event donate their space to be associated with a good cause. If you have any flexibility with your date, it can help secure a venue at a lower cost. Second, make sure your venue is accessible, and in an area your attendees are comfortable. Don’t make your attendees go too far out of their way.

5. Find a sponsor

Sponsorship can make or break your event. If your organization can secure a sponsor, more of the money your nonprofit raises can be used for your organization’s important causes rather than used to secure new donors.

But how do you go about finding new sponsors? It’s important to realize that sponsorship is not charity. In exchange for sponsorship, sponsors expect you to wield your event’s influence to give them a warm introduction to your event audience. They want to be exposed to your existing donors and clients who may be in their target demographic. 

Start by creating a list of potential sponsors, whose customer base may align with your event attendee demographic. Learn as much as you can about each potential sponsor business and their target customers. It’s crucial to understand a potential sponsor before you propose a partnership.

Your next step is to make contact. Put together a strong argument for why this company should sponsor your non-profit event, explaining your nonprofit’s mission, and that attendees of your event may make customers for the sponsors’ business. We recommend sending out a batch at a time, each email tailored to the potential sponsor, with specific details about their business. You can find a simple sponsor request here. You can find a sample event sponsorship request letter here.

 While a cold-call is often frowned upon, this could be a good option if a potential sponsor has a limited online presence.

  1. Sell Tickets Online

Technology has taken ticket sales online. Not only can you now sell tickets directly from your site, but web tools ad social media give you an opportunity to advertise and reach new potential attendees on a budget. 

Invite all your Facebook friends by creating a Facebook event page, get your friends to invite more people and share the event. Social media like Facebook also offer powerful advertising tools to let you send targeted promotions to the right audience, at low prices. Consider targeting users in your niche.

If you don’t already have one, we recommend you set up a Mailing List ASAP. Sure, Social media can be great for promotions, but direct messages through Facebook or Instagram can easily get lost. An email will go directly to the person intended and will be read when it’s most convenient. Setting up a newsletter system with a service like Mailchimp is free up to 2,000 contacts and unlimited emails. This will help you craft personalized messages and allow anyone interested in your event to stay up to date. 

Last, capitalize on your network. Reach out to past attendees and donors, sending personalized messages that encourage them to attend your next event. This will not only increase attendance but increase the likelihood of donation.

As a non-profit event planner, you’re busy with scheduling, your clients, venue, and spreading your message of change. When it comes to ticketing software, you’re looking for convenience and often pick the first software you hear. However, most ticket sales software takes huge portions of sales, cost too much, promote competing events, and eclipse your own brand. You can use Sparxo to post your event and sell tickets for your event anywhere, letting you sell tickets directly from your website with no redirects – all for free!

  • Import your guest lists and sales lists from other systems
  • aggregate all of your customer data in one place
  • Keep 100% of your ticket sales
  • Sell event tickets online
  • White Label, greatly improves SEO and Brand

 

 

CHECK OUT OUR OTHER BLOG POST ARTICLES:

SPARXO CHECK-IN, A FREE GUEST LIST APP FOR EVENTS

SPARXO MAKES IT EASY TO ADD AN EVENT CALENDAR TO YOUR WEBSITE

LEARN MORE ABOUT YOUR AUDIENCE WITH ATTENDANCE BREAKDOWN

WHERE SHOULD YOU POST YOUR EVENT? EVENTBRITE, MEETUP, OR FACEBOOK?

5 SUREFIRE WAYS TO SELL OUT TICKETS

7 UNIQUE WAYS TO MAKE YOUR EVENT VIRAL

A MEATING OF MINDS — HOW THIS COMPANY IS CHANGING THE WAY MEAT IS CONSUMED

5 SOCIAL MEDIA TRENDS TO LOOK OUT FOR IN 2019

LEARN WHAT TICKETING COMPANIES ARE HIDING – A COMPARISON

EVENT PROMOTER’S ULTIMATE GUIDE TO EMAIL PROMOTIONS

9 MISTAKES EVENT PRODUCERS OVERLOOK

3 WAYS TO BUILD YOUR FOLLOWING

HOW CREATIVE STARTUP LABS COMPLETELY SOLD OUT THEIR SECRET UNDERGROUND POP-UP EVENT USING SPARXO

TOP 5 BIGGEST EVENT PLANNING FAILS IN HISTORY

QUIZ: WHAT’S YOUR EVENT PLANNER PERSONALITY TYPE?

HOW THE NIGHTWOOD SOCIETY TOOK CONTROL OF THEIR EVENT EXPERIENCE

THE ULTIMATE EVENT PLANNING CHECKLIST

TOP 5 STEPS FOR A SUCCESSFUL POP-UP

HOW TO PLAN A FITNESS EVENT WITH NO MONEY

6 SUPER FUN EVENT IDEAS FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS

NONPROFIT EVENTS: 5 REASONS YOU NEED MOBILE TICKETING

HOW THE HOLLAND DRAG SHOW SOLD OUT EVENT TICKETS DESPITE CRITICAL MAYOR

4 EVENT BRANDING MISTAKES THAT KILL TICKET SALES

4 Event Branding Mistakes that Kill Ticket Sales

top 4 event branding mistakes

  1. Not Communicating Values

The most successful events share values with their attendees. Do your events have a clear value? Can you describe your event’s personality, both visually and in your event’s messaging?

A good value litmus test is to ask past attendees to associate one word with your events. If you get similar responses, your values are coming across. If not, you may need to make a change. For example, most Coke event-goers associate the word family with their events, while Pepsi event-goers tend to associate more energetic words like fun and thrills.

identity theft fingreprint

A great way to fix this branding issue is via market research. Look at similar events, appealing to the same audience. How are they communicating their values, in what media? What keywords are they using? What personality can you see, and how does that attract their customers? Answering these questions will help you fine-tune yours.

  1. Event Brand is Different than Company Brand or Past Event Brand

One of the biggest event branding mistakes is inconsistency. You want your event brand to be recognizable and attributed to your company, as after all the event and the company were both created under the same mission statement. While it’s definitely true that overly corporate-focused event brand for the event runs the risk of coming off as self-promoting and fake, ignoring your company’s brand entirely is worse. For example, Apple, a company priding itself on innovation and tech-savviness, would probably not want to brand an event as old-fashioned or traditional and without any emphasis on technology. While corporate branding can frustrate people, a totally unrelatable brand just confuses people, which can in many cases be worse. 

Another frequently made mistake is brand inconsistency from event to event. Does each one of your events seem to convey a completely different message? Is there any clear thread that connects them? Make sure that your event messaging can easily be linked to each other. This will not only improve your events’ visibility and encourage attendees to return, but it will allow your successful events to build on each other. Attendees who enjoyed your event will know to attribute their good time to your brand and its messaging. This will help you develop a reputation around your brand. 

  1. No Value Proposition

Does your brand offer value, ie something tangible to your attendees, or is it more intangible? How does it stand out to potential attendees?

A common issue for event brands, especially for experienced event planners, is value proposition coupled with differentiation. Branding messages that make it clear why attendees should attend your event rather than those just like it, and if they’ve been to previous events, why should they go to another one?

One great way to fix this branding sin is by stressing a value ‘add-on.’ For example, the Writer’s Digest conference stresses a ‘Pitch Slam’ in their messaging, an hour add-on where writers pitch to agents. This unique feature not only makes them stand out from other writing conferences, but it also encourages previous attendees to come back for this new feature. 

  1. Your Software Swallows your Brand

As an event planner, you’re busy with scheduling, your venue, clients, and spreading your message of change. When it comes to ticketing software, you’re looking for convenience and often pick the first software you hear. But what you might not know is that most ticket sales software takes huge portions of sales, cost too much, promote competing events, and eclipse your own brand. The powerful branding messaging behind software like Eventbrite and Ticketmaster will appear on your event page when selling tickets with their software, which can sideline your event’s brand and visibility. A ‘White-Label’ software is often a good alternative. This ticket sales software is essentially invisible, aka ‘white label’, allowing potential attendees to only see your event’s branding when using their software.

Sparxo is a white-label software to post your event and sell tickets for your event anywhere, letting you sell tickets directly from your website with no redirects – all for free!

  • Import your guest lists and sales lists from other systems
  • aggregate all of your customer data in one place
  • Keep 100% of your ticket sales
  • Sell event tickets online
  • White Label, greatly improves SEO and Brand

 

CHECK OUT OUR OTHER BLOG POST ARTICLES:

SPARXO CHECK-IN, A FREE GUEST LIST APP FOR EVENTS

SPARXO MAKES IT EASY TO ADD AN EVENT CALENDAR TO YOUR WEBSITE

LEARN MORE ABOUT YOUR AUDIENCE WITH ATTENDANCE BREAKDOWN

WHERE SHOULD YOU POST YOUR EVENT? EVENTBRITE, MEETUP, OR FACEBOOK?

5 SUREFIRE WAYS TO SELL OUT TICKETS

7 UNIQUE WAYS TO MAKE YOUR EVENT VIRAL

A MEATING OF MINDS — HOW THIS COMPANY IS CHANGING THE WAY MEAT IS CONSUMED

5 SOCIAL MEDIA TRENDS TO LOOK OUT FOR IN 2019

LEARN WHAT TICKETING COMPANIES ARE HIDING – A COMPARISON

EVENT PROMOTER’S ULTIMATE GUIDE TO EMAIL PROMOTIONS

9 MISTAKES EVENT PRODUCERS OVERLOOK

3 WAYS TO BUILD YOUR FOLLOWING

HOW CREATIVE STARTUP LABS COMPLETELY SOLD OUT THEIR SECRET UNDERGROUND POP-UP EVENT USING SPARXO

TOP 5 BIGGEST EVENT PLANNING FAILS IN HISTORY

QUIZ: WHAT’S YOUR EVENT PLANNER PERSONALITY TYPE?

HOW THE NIGHTWOOD SOCIETY TOOK CONTROL OF THEIR EVENT EXPERIENCE

THE ULTIMATE EVENT PLANNING CHECKLIST

TOP 5 STEPS FOR A SUCCESSFUL POP-UP

HOW TO PLAN A FITNESS EVENT WITH NO MONEY

6 SUPER FUN EVENT IDEAS FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS

NONPROFIT EVENTS: 5 REASONS YOU NEED MOBILE TICKETING

HOW THE HOLLAND DRAG SHOW SOLD OUT EVENT TICKETS DESPITE CRITICAL MAYOR

How the Holland Drag Show Sold out Event Tickets d...

Holland drag show

After the Mayor of Holland Nancy DeBoer and others on a Talk of the Town radio said they did not approve of drag show coming to Holland, the show’s event tickets sold out, filling more seats than ever before. What exactly happened? And what can event planners learn from this?

The Michigan Drag Brunch Show is exactly what it sounds like – a drag show at brunch. Attendees get to enjoy brunch food while watching drag performance. Mayor DeBoer expressed disapproval of the show on-air, encouraging residents who disapproved not to attend, as disapproval and low attendance could call the event off.

“I have never been to that type of event,” the mayor said. “It’s just not the kind of event I would attend.” In response to one commenter’s disapproval, the mayor expressed concerns over the show’s values, saying “There’s a whole variety of values now that we didn’t, we didn’t deal with, you know, 50 years ago.

“Stay away,” another caller said. “If they don’t get any crowds for something like that they won’t come here.”

However, these comments seemed to have the opposite effect: Within 24 hours of the mayor’s radio appearance, the event sold out. How? And why? Let’s take this the Michigan Drag Brunch as a case study, to see what exactly went right. 

  1. The Show Got the Right People Talking

 

In Holland Michigan, one of the biggest local influencers, if not the biggest, is mayor DeBoer. Love her or hate her, most of the Drag Brunch Show’s potential customers were listening. Once the mayor talked about the Brunch Drag Show, news of the show was on everyone’s lips. The takeaway is that the more people talking about your event, the better. Not everyone has to be saying good things. That’s fine. People who don’t approve of your event aren’t your target demographic. However, if your event is on everyone’s lips, your target demographic is sure to hear. The success in ticket sales is also due to unwitting influencer marketing. Like in Holland, if your event can get people with a following talking about your event, you’re ticket sales will skyrocket. Actively out to influencers who your target customer listens to, even if they’re not necessarily in your niche. This will help create a serious buzz for your event.

  1. The Show had a Clear Brand Message and Audience

One of the biggest criticisms of the Holland Drag Show was that their ‘values’ did not align with the values of the city of Holland. How could that explain ticket sales? The answer lies in branding. The Holland Drag Show events had a clear message, and potential attendees could get a very clear idea of not only what they event was about, but what the culture and atmosphere of their events would be like. Make it Unique. Make it fun. Make it brunch with us – their simple mission statement of fun and unique, niche performance comes through in all the show’s media. Their site explains in bold letters that they produce “Sunday-Fundays,” with a Facebook and Instagram featuring boatloads of party emojis, pictures of drag performers, and promotion of LGBT non-profits in their mission. They even tagged the mayor in these posts! And on their shop page, attendees can buy hilarious shirts reinforcing this carefree, confident attitude, with messages like She Doesn’t Even Brunch Here or Resting Brunch Face. The Michigan Drag Race was unapologetically them, with confidence, youthful energy, and commitment to carefree atmosphere in everything they did. Sure, this may not appeal to everyone living in Holland. But it doesn’t have to. The show’s clear brand weeded out anyone who would be otherwise uninterested while hitting their target demographic hard. A clear, decisive mission statement and voice to your event announcements and information can be an incredible way to separate your event from the crowd and boost ticket sales. 

  1. The Show kept Technology Personal

 

The Drag Brunch Show is nothing else if not extremely human. First, the show kept an active mailing list and support email, where an actual human being would answer individual questions and queries, usually with a dash of their iconic voice. 

 

Second, they engaged with customers and potential customers on social media. Like, a lot. The show would like and comments on viewers post, doing their best to provide authentic interaction. They also told a story with the pictures they posted, sharing information about performers that pulled on their audience’s heartstrings.

 

Last, the Drag Brunch Show sold tickets directly from their website. On the surface, this doesn’t seem like a huge deal. Plenty of business and event planners sell tickets through event software like EventBrite and Ticketmaster. But expert event planners like those behind the Drag Brunch show know that these popular ticketing sites often hurt SEO, brand, take big chunks of ticket revenue, and promote competing events to attendees. The Drag Brunch Show realized how incredibly important their brand, their message was to ticket sales. Frankly, it was all they had going for them. By choosing a “whitelabel” software, the MI Drag Show was able to keep tickets sales, FAQ, and customer data in one place, traffic going directly to their site instead of sites like EVentbrite. And it was the MI Drag Race’s site, their message, that ultimately sold tickets. Selling directly from their site also simplified things for customers, many of whom were not particularly tech savvy and may have been confused with a redirect to a prominent event software’s website.

 

As an event planner, you’re busy with scheduling, marketing, securing venues, and delivering an unforgettable experience for attendees. When it comes to ticketing software, you’re looking for convenience and often pick the first software you hear. However, most ticket sales software take huge portions of sales, cost too much, promote competing events, and eclipse your own brand. You can use Sparxo to post your event and sell tickets for your event anywhere, letting you sell tickets directly from your website with no redirects – all for free!

 

  • Import your guest lists and sales lists from other systems
  • aggregate all of your customer data in one place
  • Keep 100% of your ticket sales
  • Sell event tickets online
  • White Label, greatly improves SEO and Brand

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A MEATING OF MINDS — HOW THIS COMPANY IS CHANGING THE WAY MEAT IS CONSUMED

5 SOCIAL MEDIA TRENDS TO LOOK OUT FOR IN 2019

LEARN WHAT TICKETING COMPANIES ARE HIDING – A COMPARISON

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NONPROFIT EVENTS: 5 REASONS YOU NEED MOBILE TICKETING

Nonprofit Events: 5 Reasons You Need Mobile Ticket...

Events are a key tool used by nonprofits to get supporters involved while raising money for an important cause. While we always appreciate donors giving online, hosting events provides a personal touch as supporters are able to meet your volunteers, other donors, and your staff members. 

All of the attendees believe in the same cause, providing a great bonding opportunity. 

While events are a classic way to bring people together, the processes for planning events has evolved with an increasingly digitally-minded society. One major software advancement for events: mobile ticketing. 

Mobile ticketing allows registrants to scan their smartphones or other mobile devices at the entrance for access to the event. Generally, mobile ticketing is paired with online ticket sales to minimize the work that needs to be done at the entrance of events. 

However, mobile ticketing does a lot more than simply save your staff time and energy. Other benefits include: 

  1. Increased accessibility. 
  2. Reduced printing costs. 
  3. Faster check-in processes. 
  4. Streamlined data management. 
  5. A completed software stack. 

Ready to learn more about all of these benefits? Let’s get started!

1. Increased Accessibility

Over half of online traffic is mobile. This means more and more people are searching the web via smartphones or tablets than from computers. The chart below shows the percentage of all global web pages served to mobile phones from 2009 to 2018 (provided by Statista). 

Chances are when people are signing up for your event, they’re doing so from a mobile device. Therefore, it’s important for them to have just as easy a process signing up as those who register from their computers. 

 

Make sure your supporters can easily complete the entire ticket-purchasing process from their smartphone or tablet. 

 

If your registration page is not mobile-responsive yet, you may be losing registrants through shopping cart abandonment. They’ll leave your event page because the process of signing up or purchasing a ticket is too difficult. 

However, when we say that the entire process should be accessible from the mobile device, this means you need to do more than just optimize the purchasing step. Your supporter should never need to switch devices during the ticketing process. When they purchase a ticket from their phone, they should also be able to check-in using that same device.

Mobile ticketing also provides increased accessibility because it reduces the one-off issues caused by paper ticketing. For instance, paper tickets can be:

    • Smudged. This is especially true if your event attendees are printing their own tickets at home. Lower-quality printers may result in problem-causing smudges on tickets, making them more difficult to scan at the event.
    • Damaged. Paper tickets may be ripped or torn before the event even begins. This can also lead to issues when your supporters arrive at the event. 

 

  • Lost. People are much more likely to lose a small slip of paper than they are to lose their cell phones. They won’t be able to enjoy everything your organization has to offer at the event if they lost their ticket before they even arrived. 

 

All of these problems make mobile ticketing a more accessible and reliable option for your nonprofit’s event. 

2. Reduced Printing Costs

Printing can be costly for nonprofits. It’s one of many easily overlooked mistakes made by event producers to not budget in printing costs during the planning process. Consider the expense of ink, paper, and high-quality printing devices. For single tickets or a small crowd, printing won’t be too costly, but for large groups, those expenses add up. 

While not everyone will choose to participate in mobile ticketing options, each person who uses their smartphone to scan into an event saves one ticket that your organization would’ve otherwise spent money printing.

Think about other organizations that use a full-time ticketing system. Your local aquarium has likely switched to aquarium ticketing software with online sales and additional mobile functionality. 

 

Those who rely on ticketing for their everyday organizational health see the immense benefits associated with switching to mobile ticketing. 

 

While you may not need full-time ticketing software, you can still benefit from incorporating mobile ticketing into your event strategy.

Another key factor to consider is that mobile ticketing saves your staff members time. Instead of selling printed tickets at the door, you can rely on your up-to-date technology to provide a scannable QR code for registrants. This shaves off valuable seconds, which compile to equal additional minutes and even hours that can be better spent making your event fantastic.

If you’re looking for an accounting solution that will help you see the positive impact of the budgetary changes associated with proper software investments, click here

3. Faster Check-In Processes

No one likes waiting in line, especially not your event attendees. A faster check-in process ensures a positive engagement kickoff for your event attendees. 

 

Mobile ticketing provides the faster check-in process to improve the experience of your attendees right off the bat. 

 

The primary way that event attendees can check into your event using mobile ticketing is by scanning a QR code. Instead of searching through lists of names on paper, all your organization needs to do is scan a quick code!

Of course, you’ll need to have some backup ways to search for attendees just in case they’ve misplaced the code or something goes wrong. That’s when search features in your mobile ticketing tech are incredibly useful. If you can search for your attendees by name, email, or ticket code, you have a backup for those rare instances where a QR code isn’t enough. 

Think about it this way: Let’s just say you are expecting 1,000 attendees to your nonprofit event. If 1 in every 100 supporters has difficulty with the QR code, that means you’ll only need to slow down the check-in process 10 times to search for the name of an attendee. Compare that to paper check-in or less equipped technology where you’d need to search all 1,000. 

When you’re looking for software that offers mobile check-in, be sure they’ll take the extra step to ensure speed with:

 

  • Imported third-party tickets. Don’t slow down just because someone has a third-party ticket! Import them to maintain speed and accuracy. 
  • Multi-device functionality. Double-check to ensure both iOS and Android compatibility. You don’t want to alienate attendees from speed due to their preferred operating system.
  • A guest list app for the host organization. Things happen. Maybe you need to double-check a name or look up a guest list stat. Doing so on the move with a mobile app can keep the whole process moving faster for your nonprofit.  

 

Speed is a big deal to your attendees. A slow check-in process may discourage some people, which can be difficult to recover from. You don’t want to kick off your event trying to re-engage attendees after a poor check-in experience. Instead, make sure everything is planned expertly from the start!

4. Streamlined Data Management

One of the biggest advantages of working with mobile ticketing and digital event resources is that you can streamline your collection and storage of data. 

Your nonprofit should track every engagement opportunity your attendees take advantage of in your CRM. This provides a big picture of their involvement with your organization, helping facilitate communications in the future. You’ll want to track their event attendance as well as any donations given during that event. 

 

With digital registration and check-in processes, you can easily download the information provided during this process and upload it to the CRM. 

 

This drastically cuts back on the amount of manual data input from one system to another. Manual input isn’t inherently bad but leaves room for human error. Plus, it’s costly in terms of hours. Wouldn’t you prefer your staff to be working on something more relevant to your cause?

Another form of data storage you should focus on streamlining is that related to your accounting software and ticket sales. Be sure your accounting software offers budgeting features that will relate directly to your event. You may need to track information such as:

  • Venue cost
  • Food and drink expenses
  • Ticket sale revenue
  • Donations from the event
  • Sponsorships or grants
  • Any other revenue or expenses

With more data available online, you can easily transfer information about these topics between software solutions. 

Make sure any accounting solution you invest in offers features to create a budget specifically for the event so you can compare with the true cost after the event is over. Check out the other important features you should look for in accounting software from the experts at MIP Fund Accounting

5. Completed Software Stack

As we touched on slightly in the last section, software for each of the features at your nonprofit event shouldn’t stand alone. Your nonprofit likely has an entire software stack that you use for day-to-day activities as well as for your event. 

 

A complete stack of software is one with features to satisfy all of your needs. It will ensure your event runs smoothly from start to finish.

 

The specific software you should think about as your nonprofit plans its next event includes:

  • Fund accounting software. Fund accounting software is nonprofit-focused and specifically designed to help organizations like your budget and allocate money for events management, other software solutions, event fundraising, and more. 
  • Event ticketing software. Event ticketing solutions like Sparxo provide online purchasing options and mobile ticketing that make it easy for attendees to learn more about your upcoming event directly from your website and buy a ticket right then and there with no redirect or other brands. 
  • Event planning software. Event planning software solutions help organizations plan speakers, venues, communications, and other activities involved in the planning of the event activities themselves. 

Before you make these important investments, be sure you have the funds set aside for them. While the venue, speakers, and food may seem like obvious expenses, many organizations forget to factor in the price of tech in their budgets. But really, the tech your nonprofit chooses can help make or break your next event!

If you’re looking for more tech options for your nonprofit’s next event, check out this list of top providers from Double the Donation

As your nonprofit plans your upcoming event, don’t forget to collect lots of records. Your mobile ticketing solution should offer statistics about purchasing and check-in processes. Look through these statistics to get a better idea about your ROI for your event software. 

 

The right tools investment should bring in more registrations, more attendees, and more donations!

 

As an event planner for your nonprofit, you’re busy with scheduling, marketing, securing venues, increasing donorship and delivering an unforgettable experience for attendees. When it comes to ticketing software, you’re looking for convenience and often pick the first software you hear. However, most ticket sales software takes huge portions of sales, cost too much, promote competing events, and eclipse your own brand. You can use Sparxo to post your event and sell tickets for your event anywhere, letting you sell tickets directly from your website with no redirects – all for free!

 

  • Import your guest lists and sales lists from other systems
  • aggregate all of your customer data in one place
  • Keep 100% of your ticket sales
  • Sell event tickets online
  • White Label, greatly improves SEO and Brand

 

Article was written by: Pia Simeoni

Pia Simeoni is Director of Marketing for Nonprofit Solutions at Community Brands. You can find Pia on LinkedIn and Twitter.

CHECK OUT OUR OTHER BLOG POST ARTICLES:

SPARXO CHECK-IN, A FREE GUEST LIST APP FOR EVENTS

SPARXO MAKES IT EASY TO ADD AN EVENT CALENDAR TO YOUR WEBSITE

LEARN MORE ABOUT YOUR AUDIENCE WITH ATTENDANCE BREAKDOWN

WHERE SHOULD YOU POST YOUR EVENT? EVENTBRITE, MEETUP, OR FACEBOOK?

5 SUREFIRE WAYS TO SELL OUT TICKETS

7 UNIQUE WAYS TO MAKE YOUR EVENT VIRAL

A MEATING OF MINDS — HOW THIS COMPANY IS CHANGING THE WAY MEAT IS CONSUMED

5 SOCIAL MEDIA TRENDS TO LOOK OUT FOR IN 2019

LEARN WHAT TICKETING COMPANIES ARE HIDING – A COMPARISON

EVENT PROMOTER’S ULTIMATE GUIDE TO EMAIL PROMOTIONS

9 MISTAKES EVENT PRODUCERS OVERLOOK

3 WAYS TO BUILD YOUR FOLLOWING

HOW CREATIVE STARTUP LABS COMPLETELY SOLD OUT THEIR SECRET UNDERGROUND POP-UP EVENT USING SPARXO

TOP 5 BIGGEST EVENT PLANNING FAILS IN HISTORY

QUIZ: WHAT’S YOUR EVENT PLANNER PERSONALITY TYPE?

HOW THE NIGHTWOOD SOCIETY TOOK CONTROL OF THEIR EVENT EXPERIENCE

THE ULTIMATE EVENT PLANNING CHECKLIST

TOP 5 STEPS FOR A SUCCESSFUL POP-UP

HOW TO PLAN A FITNESS EVENT WITH NO MONEY

6 SUPER FUN EVENT IDEAS FOR COLLEGE STUDENTS