Years ago, my lady and I visited Disney's Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom in Florida. As with all trips, my marketing detective cap goes on. Especially when it comes to Disney!
On this trip, I paid careful attention to how Disney tracks attendance with pinpoint accuracy.
For their insanely deep pockets, Disney still uses some ancient technology to track attendance at park attractions.
During our last visit to the Magic Kingdom, there were old school turn styles at the Enchanted Tiki Room and Swiss Family Treehouse. (Yes, I love the classics!) And when visiting Disney's Animal Kingdom, the "cast members" (staff) were using hand tally counters and classic clipboards to track individual attraction attendance.
Granted, Disney makes excellent use of optical turn styles, plus other neat technology when you enter their parks. But I'd point out that Disney nails their daily attendance counts leveraging both old and new tech.
Why the interest in attendance accuracy?
Because yesterday during a marketing discussion the topic of ticket sales and attendance were broached.
One of the first nosy questions I ask every event organizer, "how many ticket did you sell and what was your event attendance?" To which the responses are all over the place and rarely confident. At least in my experience, attendance numbers are usually grossly exaggerated.
Yes, we all know many event organizers exaggerate their attendance. But where do you draw the line? 100%, 200%, how about a 300% overestimation on attendance?
"Eugene, why does it matter? It's not your event!" This is true, and it really does matter.
Because when you're doing ticket sale forecasting and laser targeting your marketing dollars, accurate attendance numbers are paramount! How?
Knowing your attendance and ticket numbers allow you to do precise marketing math. Those numbers also show you how much you can afford to spend to acquire a new customer. And the cost to reacquire a previous customer. Knowing your numbers, especially as they apply to marketing and advertising spend will set you apart from the pack!
Please make sure you know your attendance numbers cold. When you do, you open your event to fantastic marketing opportunities.
Here's some more ideas in the name of adventure:
- Buried Treasure and Event Promotion
- Exquisitely Describing Your Event
- In the Name of Backyard Adventure
- The Audio Learning Advantage: Plug in and Learn