Generating hype for independent shows in a world full of cashed up corporate mega-events can feel like an uphill battle. But having your own voice and the ability to engage closely with fans is a strength that can help you stand out (and sell out) your shows.
To get inside the minds of Aussie music fans and uncover their path to buying tickets for gigs and festivals, we surveyed over 1,100 event-goers. We’ve used top insights from this research to create five simple, proven ways to promote shows and sell out, without selling out.
Free Download: The 2019 Australian Music Fans Report: How to Engage Aussie Music Fans to Sell More Tickets
Ways to Promote a Music Event #1: Use event details and visual content to engage fans on social media
Love it or hate it, there’s no escaping social media as the tool for promoting live music. Our survey uncovered that social media is the top place fans use to discover music events, with 41% of respondents using it to find shows to buy tickets to.
In addition to event discovery, music fans are active on social media to seek out information before buying tickets. While the most common details people are seeking out are the event date (82%), ticket price options (76%) and venue (70%) — many fans are looking to social media to validate that they want to pay to see an artist. 55% of all fans use social media to look up information about events, but for Gen Z and Millennials, this increases to 70%.
To put this in action for your shows, make sure you use social media to promote every event. Create clear event listings that highlight important details upfront such as date, time, venue, and pricing options — as this what people are most likely to seek out. Put dates and city locations in event titles and ads to hit the right audience.
After covering the basics, people will be looking to validate that your concert or festival is worth their time and money. Instead of making your posts all about ticket sales, use unique content to captivate fans. Impressive photos, videos, and clips of artists are not only great for enticing sales, it’s also shareable content that people can use to rally friends. 49% of respondents said the reason they attend events is because friends or family are going.
Here are a few things that will make attendees’ vetting process easier:
- Upload or link to YouTube videos of previous events or hype reels
- Showcase powerful photos from the perspective of your attendees
- Create a Spotify playlist of top hits from your artist/s
Ways to Promote a Music Event #2: Use direct email to drive loyalty and ticket sales
The third most common way for fans to hear about live music is via direct email, which makes your email database a key tool for promoting events. Unlike bulk email newsletters from ticketing companies, direct emails from venues, artists, or festivals can cut through the clutter of noisy inboxes because fans already have a relationship established with events and venues they know and love.
Email lists also have a direct audience that isn’t affected by social media algorithms and pay-to-play advertising. The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) found that by running email campaigns alongside social media ads, promotions can see an “uplift in response rates in the region of 40% with minimal increases in costs.”
When is the best time to email fans about an upcoming gig? Surprisingly, it’s immediately after your last event. Our survey found that in the days following an event, 47% looked for other live music events they could attend and 82% bought tickets for a different artist. By reconnecting with fans after your events via email, you can build loyalty and tap an event-hungry audience who are ready to buy tickets to more shows.
Make sure there are ways for fans to register for updates to hear announcements, pre-sale offers, and receive engaging content about your upcoming artists.
Learn more about how to create tailored emails to capture fans after events with The 2019 Australian Music Fans Report.
Ways to Promote a Music Event #3: Connect your concerts on Spotify to promote your next gig and boost event discovery
Our research shows that 42% of ticket buyers are streaming artist’s music before purchasing tickets. Half of all attendees (49%) will also head home and stream artist’s music after attending a gig.
If music fans are looking for the next gig to attend, they can find it in the ‘Concerts’ tab on Spotify. Concerts recommends upcoming shows to fans for artists that they listen to or follow. By ticketing your event with a provider that is connected to Spotify, your upcoming events will be promoted to fans.
Ways to Promote a Music Event #4: Sell tickets wherever fans are found
41% of event-goers are using social media to find live music to attend — so this is exactly where you should be selling tickets. Once you’ve captured fans’ interest, it’s time to make the sale then and there.
By connecting your ticketing platform with native checkouts on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Spotify, you can let attendees reserve seats, register, or buy tickets without leaving their favourite site or app. A simpler checkout means more people at your events.
For example, a fan could see a listing for one of your shows on a social media site or app like Facebook or Instagram, a streaming music app like Spotify, or an event discovery app like Bandsintown. They can then buy a ticket right there on that site or app, without being redirected to a different page.
Nicolas Jones, Director of Cult Leader (Yah Yahs), has seen pre-sales soar since selling tickets directly on Facebook. “We’re selling out more shows than ever before,” says Jones. “Our pre-sales have increased by an average of 20-30% per show. This is money in the bank for our venues. It’s been a game-changer.”
Ways to Promote a Music Event #5: Use video to highlight artists and event vibe
With fans looking to substantiate their decision to purchase tickets, video content is a great way for people to view artists and see the kind of experience they’re getting at your venue or festival before committing.
You can use social media and your website to link to clips of your artists performing at other gigs, or if you run regular events, using live video can showcase your venue/festival and provide a more intimate look at your events. According to Livestream, concerts, and festivals are the second most-watched type of Live video out there and that 67% of viewers are more likely to buy a ticket to an event after watching a livestream of the event (or similar event).
Free Download: The Ultimate Guide to Using Facebook Live at Your Events
Download The 2019 Australian Music Fans Report
If you want to sell out shows, you have to get inside the mind of your audience. To find out how today’s music fans are discovering and interacting at live shows and festivals, we surveyed over 1,100 Aussie event-goers to learn more about their path to purchase and onsite experience.
Get the full insights and learn how to engage music fans and boost ticket sales with The 2019 Australian Music Fans Report.