Beware: An Event Website NOT Designed to Make Money!
Most event websites are the main hubs for online ticket sales. If not, they should be! As a part of the ticket buying process, most of your customers will pass through your site first, in most cases. An extra click or a distracting graphic on the page can significantly diminish your ticket sales. I've seen the change of even just two to four words on an event homepage can INCREASE customer lead generation by up to 24%! It's unbelievable, FOUR simple words that create at 24% DELTA in response.
What follows could be offensive to some and profitable to others, here goes!
The problem with too many graphic designers and ad agencies is that they confuse REVENUE GENERATION with AESTHETICS. While there is value in aesthetics, REVENUE-FOCUSED DESIGN is what ultimately drives business results!
Too many ad agencies and graphic designers have a goal of building “beautiful” webpages can often run perpendicular to the real goal of developing web pages that are easy to navigate and drive ticket sales. While some people may say, “Wow, that looks great” when they look at your website, an over-emphasis on image and form can create huge inefficiencies that sacrifice your ticket revenue. In too many cases, graphic designers and ad agencies sacrifice COPY for DESIGN.
Here's an actual quote from a marketing agency: (I've intentionally withheld the client and agency names)
"The EVENT is celebrating their 10th year (their 9th with AGENCY NAME) with an exciting, fresh, website designed to excite a new generation of attendees with less text and a more image-rich site."
THE RESULT: The decimation of event ticket sale conversion rates!
Having reviewed hundreds of event websites over the course of 22 years, I can tell you that most sites are not set up for maximum revenue generation. In fact, their design often impedes ticket sales, since customers become frustrated by not being able to quickly and easily navigate to whatever information they’re looking for. In some cases, website users can even find the buy button. Recently a local event organizer had to use precious seconds of their radio advertisement to tell people where to find the "buy button." Your event website design needs to drive ticket sales—with no exceptions! If your website isn’t pushing your ticket sales HARD for your event, you need to change it immediately.
Here's what the late great David Ogilvy quoted from his friend Rooser Reeves (consider by some Father of the Unique Selling Proposition)
“Let’s say you have $1,000,000 tied up in your little company and suddenly your advertising isn’t working and sales are going down. And everything depends on it. Your future depends on it, your family’s future depends on it, other people’s families depend on it . . . Now, what do you want from me? Fine writing? Or do you want to see the sales curve stop moving down and start moving up?” – Rosser Reeves
Event Profit Action
Make sure that every graphical element and word of copy earns its place on your website. The key is in knowing which design elements will get the desired results. For this, there is no substitute for years of experience and a thorough process of design testing. There are a very few number of graphic designers that "get it!" This extremely rare graphic design in basically a unicorn. How so? They understand how to use design and its various elements to drive sales and revenue. If you find one, pay them well and never let them go!
Graphic Source: Google Analytics Real Time Data for a 2018 client.
Additional Event Marketing and Advertising Resources:
- David Ogilvy's "Secret Weapon" for Advertising Success
- Promotional Headlines for Your Event Marketing
- A "Must Follow" Event Advertising Strategy
- Advertising and Marketing that Sells
- Using 40 Million Dollar Words
- Watch Your Typography