Photo Credit: Taylor Schley (City of Topeka), care of Visit Topeka, Inc.
Digital campaigns come in all shapes and sizes. Some have large budgets, multiple platforms, and broad goals–while others are more tight with specific parameters. Neither is better or worse, but our ability to impact campaign performance comes down to making the right strategic decisions for the given circumstance.
In the case of The CoreFirst Ice Rink at Evergy Plaza, we initially recommended multiple platforms including social, display, and search. After further discussion with the client and identifying some budget limitations, we scaled back to a single platform – Google Search.
At the end of 2022, cohort.digital was tasked with running a promotion and ticket sales campaign. Evergy Plaza in downtown Topeka, Kansas installed an ice skating rink for the 22/23 winter season. The goal of this campaign was to promote awareness for the ice rink and sell as many tickets as possible with a $1,200 budget across a 15-week campaign. The ultimate ticket sale goal was unidentified at the beginning of the campaign, so we focused on metrics we could track that would indicate success. These included impressions, clicks, clicks on “Checkout” button and clicks on “Purchase” button, while also monitoring click through rate, cost per click, and return on ad spend.
Outside of this location, the nearest community ice rink in the region is roughly 45 minutes away. With this knowledge, we sought to promote ticket sales and attendance to communities inside a 50 mile radius assuming these residents would be more likely to attend due to proximity.
Ordinarily we would have recommended a multi-channel approach, utilizing both awareness and search platforms. There was not room in the available budget for awareness platforms, so in this case we applied the most direct and conversion-based approach possible to our Google Search set-up. Our goal was for Google Search to work in tandem with the other promotional efforts happening within the community. For instance, major community partners were sponsoring the event so we utilized search terms that very specifically referenced those community partners.
Additionally, we set up a very clean and direct sales pathway in our campaign. Many times a sales pathway might look like the following:
Prospect Enters General Search Term > Go to Sponsor Landing Page With Multiple Winter Events > Click to read more information on event of choice > Reroute to Third Party Seller > Click to see available tickets > Add Tickets to Cart > Purchase Tickets.
In some campaigns it pays to stay a bit more broad and capture users who are both broadly interested in your topic (i.e. family friendly winter activities) and specifically seeking it out (i.e. ice rinks near me). In this case, we eliminated those more broad search terms and focused solely on those who were ready to act. This shortened our purchase path from the one above, to this:
Prospect Enters Ice Rink Search Term > Go to Evergy Plaza Ice Rink Ticket Sale Landing Page > Purchase Tickets
In our first month alone, this campaign exceeded our total campaign click goal by more than 300%. Results only continued to trend upward from there. In total, our campaign delivered one third of the client’s total revenue and ticket sales.
Our total campaign results for only $1,200 were:
It must be stated that these results are not typical. We’ve seldom seen results quite like these, and it’s fair to say they’ll be difficult to replicate in the future. The biggest take away is that a small investment on the front end can pay really high dividends on the backend if a campaign is set up strategically.
If you need help with ticket sales for your next event, hit us up!
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