Getting your ticket prices right is absolutely crucial in the ticketing game, but it can be a tricky proposition. How do you find the sweet spot where your event is profitable but not making people feel like they are paying too much for what they are getting?
The good news is that with a little number crunching and smart thinking, we know a few ways that you can take the mystery and stress out of this potentially perilous problem.
It’s important, from the get-go, to work out all the factors that are going to influence your ticket price. Everything from the cost of putting the event on, to the time of year it’s taking place (heck, even the price of getting your hair done just right for the event, because when you look good you feel good).
Ideally you’ll want to cover your costs, make some profit and have the best chance of selling out. If you’re running events for the first time it’s especially important to make your attendees feel good about spending their hard earned cash on tickets to your event. Since no one has any previous experience with what you are offering, you’ll want to make sure the first experience is a positive and memorable one that can enhance your brand image.
What is your budget?
- Add up all the costs involved in putting on your event to help determine your break-even point. Don’t forget to include your marketing budget and ticketing fees.
- Be realistic about how many people your venue can hold, and get up to date on the legalities around this. The rule of thumb here is one square meter per person. Don’t forget to include the bar, the stage and other structures that will take up space on the day.
- Do you have sponsors onboard? Are you getting funds from any other sources? Factor these into any calculations you might make.
What else is happening around that time, and are your ticket prices market related?
- Think about where people are financially in the year. Has everyone just celebrated Christmas and New Year? There is a reason people call the first month of the year Janu-worry, among other, very much ruder, things. You may have an amazing event with top class entertainment, but people might not be able to splash out on a ticket if they have already reached the bottom of their bank accounts by the time it rolls around.
- Are there any similar events happening around the same time? You’ll definitely want to research this. If there are, find out how much their tickets are selling for and what it includes.. Make sure yours measures up before you price your tickets.
- What value are you offering the ticket buyer? Can you justify the price by what’s included with the ticket? Ticket buyers will catch on if you charge an arm and a leg for an event that cost you nothing to put on. On the other hand, if you have spent good money on getting the best of the best, be sure to make people aware of that fact. Sell this hard on all your marketing platforms and show people what value they are getting for their money.
Think of ways to provide extra value without losing money:
- You could create additional tickets that give attendees something extra for a higher price, such as Early Entry, Backstage Pass, or VIP, gift bags, or a free glass (for a food and wine event).
- Offer targeted discounts for Students, Pensioners, Members of the Military or that cute guy/girl you really want to impress by throwing the event (this last one may only exist if your event is part of an 80’s teen comedy).
- Offer group discounts for people buying a bunch of tickets. For example: six tickets for the price of five.
- Use price phasing to encourage people to commit to buying a ticket early. Create two or three different phase ticket types with prices that increase closer to the event date. You can set each ticket sales date to start and end automatically on a predetermined date without lifting a finger if you are selling tickets on Quicket. This will also increase urgency for the tickets as time goes by.
Once you have a good idea of the above, take a look at our tool below for working out your ticket price:
Download our Ticket Price Calculation Tool
Of course, it’s also a good idea to get feedback after your event has ended. Try sending out an email post-event and be sure to ask if your attendees were happy paying what they did for the experience they had. Alternatively, read our article about MailChimp and how it can help you stay in touch with your event attendees.
Remember, affordable tickets aren’t reason enough for people to buy – you need to give your market a reason to commit. However, if you treat your attendees right, you will soon have a loyal following to your events. Even if they only come to see how great your hair looks on the day 😉