Not long ago, hosting an event required the help of a dedicated professional.
Whether it was a concert, festival, sports day, gala or food and drink event,
you needed a full-time staff member or outside event planner to oversee
every detail. Thus, simply getting the event off the ground required a big
investment of time and money.
But today, the landscape has changed. Thanks to developments in
technology, it’s now possible to “DIY” the entire event planning and
management process. Easy-to-use software helps event organizers create an
event website, sell tickets online, track sales, market the event and
communicate with attendees. Electronic ticketing options allow buyers to
receive tickets via email or smartphone. And ticket printing companies
allow event managers to design and print event tickets, custom wristbands
and promotional materials that look professional.
Meanwhile, events themselves are becoming more popular. The rise of
streaming entertainment services has caused physical sales to decline: Album
sales were down 13.6% in the first half of 2016, while DVD sales dropped
12% in 2015. The experience economy, on the other hand, is booming, as
record numbers of consumers seek concerts and other unique experiences
that can’t be easily downloaded. In 2015 alone, ticket sales in North
America increased 11%.
Hundreds of new events are being created to meet this increased demand—from sports games to concerts to arts and culture festivals. Concert and event promotion is now a $23 billion industry in the U.S. There are more than 800 U.S. music festivals, and 32 million people attended at least one of them in 2014 alone.
What’s more, organizations are finding that events can be effective marketing tools. EMI reports that nearly three-quarters (74%) of attendees have a more positive opinion of the company, product, brand or service being promoted after participating in one of its events.
Millennial consumers are largely fueling the experience boom. In fact, 80% of Millennials in a recent survey say they’ll attend a live, ticketed event in 2016. Since Millennials are now the largest living generation, these trends are here to stay—at least for the foreseeable future. In a survey by EMI & Mosaic, 79% of brands say they’ll spend more on event and experiential marketing this year than they did last year. In other words, if your organization isn’t hosting events—it should be.