Top 5 Must-Haves for Your Event’s Mobile Site

This summer has been jam-packed with amazing events to attend. Between the conferences, festivals, rodeos and fairs, I’ve come to realize one thing is certain…a mobile source of information for ANY event is crucial for customers to experience full enjoyment! But it’s not just personal experience that points to that. Studies continuously show that the number of consumers accessing information from their phones is on the rise, and according to MediaPost, a recent study by Adobe Digital Index showed more specifically that 70% of respondents searched their phones for local information (such as event times, weather, maps, and reviews).

With that in mind, here are the Top 5 Must-Haves for Your Mobile Site. Trust me; your customers will thank you for it.

  • How to get to your event – Few things are less frustrating than wanting to attend an event but not knowing exactly how to get there. Large events cause a lot of confusion even for a local audience who may already be familiar with your exact location, but aren’t sure of road closures, parking or public transit options. Your physical address is extremely important to include so customers can punch it directly into their mobile maps, but don’t forget the details. Clearly state the preferred routes to get to the designated parking locations, and include the reasonable options for walk-up, bicycle, and public transportation traffic.
  • A robust schedule – If you’re an event with lots of activities occurring over a course of time, be sure your customers can easily find the dates, times and locations for each of those individual activities from the only source of information they will have on them (their phone). I attended an event recently where there was much confusion over where and when things were happening. A friend pulled out their phone and said let me check my schedule, and I exclaimed, “You found a mobile schedule? Where?” and he turned his phone around to reveal a photo he had taken of his hand-written notes of the events he wanted to attend that day. I was so disappointed! Don’t make your customers do the leg work themselves because you’ll lose the vast majority of them.
  • Ticket purchasing – According to Internet Retailer, US mobile sales are up, and this means big opportunities for events of all sizes and types. Consumers are  increasingly comfortable making purchases via their mobile devices, and your event or venue should be taking advantage of this trend. Not only does it guarantee increased revenue via advance ticket sales, but it also provides  your customers with the convenience they’re growing accustomed to.
  • Social interaction – Earlier this month, Facebook announced that 78% of their users are visiting their site from mobile devices. Social media is a great way for your fans to access and share your event or venue’s information, so make it easy for them to find you on Facebook, Twitter and any other social networks that you participate in via their mobile devices.
  • Email signup – Lastly, provide your customers with an option to get more information from you throughout the year. It will help them stay connected with your brand, and as mobile email activity continues to grow, you will remain present in your fans’ minds even after your event has passed.

Reaching your customers wherever they are and giving them real time information on the go will build your brand’s credibility, and your fans will love you for it!

Our Adventures to the North Texas Fair & Rodeo

 

The North Texas Fair & Rodeo (www.ntfair.com) kicked off Friday, August 16th. As one of our recently launched websites, we wanted to see what this event was all about and what support we could offer as they tried something new, SaffireScan (print-at-home tickets that are scanned at the gate with our App on any Apple Mobile Device)!

Kendra and Kirk showed up prior to the gates opening and were impressed to see the number of tickets sold online and printed at home, but were mostly blown away by the amount of traffic throughout the fairgrounds once the gates opened. Turns out opening night had a record breaking revenue for the fair! Below are Nanci Kimmey of the NTFair with Kendra along with an action shot of SaffireScan.

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Jessica and Brandi from the team also came up, and the whole group got to meet the Josh Abbott Band and see their stellar performance!

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The second day of opening weekend kicked off with the annual parade. Jessica and Brandi got front row seats as the parade route circled the town square. Drill teams, antique tractors, miniature ponies, and even Z-Donks (pictured – a breed of Zebra and Donkey) were featured in this local tradition; how crazy?!

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The whole afternoon and evening Saturday were spent on the fairgrounds, eating the foods, talking with the people of Denton, watching the PRCA Rodeo from the Catwalk, and hanging out backstage at the Jack Ingram Concert! What a trip! Check out all of our photos from our trip on our Facebook page!

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Welcome Bradford County Fair!

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As Cassie traveled all across Florida last week she stopped in Starke, Florida to meet with the Bradford County Fair Board, a group we met during the Florida Federation of Fairs Convention in May. After her meeting with this friendly bunch they let us know that they too were ready to join the SaffireMovement! While we adore their continued use of strawberries in their marketing efforts and event branding, we are anxious to see how we can help them expand their online marketing with a new website. We are thrilled to add yet another nice, welcoming, and fun group of people to the Saffire client list, how charming!

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Texas Festivals & Events Association Summer Shindig

As two members of the Saffire Austin Team were having a great time in Florida, the rest of us had an early morning start to attend the TFEA Summer Shindig in San Marcos, TX. We were honored to get to present a topic near and dear to our hearts “Online Marketing Measurement” and Kendra was able to engage the TFEA members attending with her wit, knowledge, and (shhh..this is just our little secret) DONUTS! We were able to reconnect with a few of our clients during the down time of TELP courses, Brackenridge Park Recreation Complex, Rio Grande Valley Livestock Show, Fiesta San Antonio Commission,  Palomino Fest & TFEA themselves.

The day flew by quickly as everyone was eager to learn and by late afternoon we were ready to serve some of Texas’ best summer beers to the TFEA bunch as we boarded our school buses to head out to Three Dudes Winery just outside the city of San Marcos. This winery is set along the San Marcos River and is an open air venue that allows you to experience the outdoors in the shade with a breeze. While it was warm upon arrival the wine tasting began immediately and ice cold beer could be found in cow troughs; one bus even arrived a little late and had to catch up but our favorite drinks of the night were the Three Dudes Chenin Blanc & Ruby Redbird Grapefruit Shiner Bock. After tasting the best Texas has to offer for drink, it was time for more Texas dishes with some BBQ and we got our fill as the awards ceremony began.

We were thrilled when the Texas State Forest Festival and Fiesta San Antonio Commission won the Best Website Award for their categories and even celebrated afterwards. We continued to hang out with our friends, new and old, late into the evening and we sure are glad we stayed up late to catch up and talk about the future of these exciting festivals! Thanks for having us TFEA!

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Saffire Returns to Florida for FFEA

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Jessica and Cassie traveled back to Florida for the Florida Festivals & Events Association Convention in Bonita Springs. They had such a great time meeting this festive crowd of Floridians! The mornings kicked off bright and early with Ask the Expert Sessions where Cassie discussed Email Marketing and Measuring Google Analytics. Then the gals continued late into the nights providing costumes, homemade Christmas cookies, Grincharitas, queso and other snacks and goodies for the Grinch’s Christmas-in-July themed hospitality suite parties. Jessica tried her best to win the tacky Christmas sweater contest while Cassie came in full Grinch gear.

Proudly bringing a little bit of Texas to Florida, they gave a bottle of Republic Tequila and some newly-designed Saffire t-shirts to raffle winner, Nancy Stewart-Franczak from Festival Management Group in Delray Beach. It was an amazing trip and we’re thrilled to have met so many new faces! Cassie continued the tour of Florida last week meeting with several events we met at the Florida Federation of Fairs Convention in May.  Needless to say, we can’t get enough of the Sunshine State!

Check out more photos here>

Welcome Wings Stadium!

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Look out Kalamazoo! Wings Stadium has joined the SaffireMovement and will soon have a new website for the stadium. We met these kind folks from Michigan at the Event Arena Marketing Conference (EAMC) back in June and they were as eager as us to start working together. The Saffire team is over the moon to be expanding into the venue industry and Wings Stadium is a stellar client from this arena. More importantly, we are hoping to learn a thing or two about hockey!