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Event Fails of 2013

Top 5 Event Fails of 2013

eventfaux We talk with thousands of event organizers all year. What are the 5 biggest event planning faux pas? We hope to save you time, money, frustration and ease you into 2014 by sharing these lessons learned. Want a smooth event? Plan and simplify. Avoid these trials and tribulations.

1. Complicated Pricing
Keeping pricing simple can save a lot of time and headache for both you and your attendees. While festivals and conference may seem like the perfect place to implement complicated ticket types and passes, event producers can achieve the same amount or more sales with intuitive and basic pricing. As you set your prices, avoid increments of a dollar such as $11, $21, $31. It’s too difficult to manage cash and change at the door or gate.

Tip: Clearly state what payment methods are available at the door of your event. Cash only? Cash and debit/credit? Avoid confusion at the box office by making this clear.

2. Lack of Staffing
Having enough staff to be on-hand at events is crucial to managing a successful event. If problems occur, you want to have people ready to answer questions or concerns on the fly. As you allocate resources for your event, think about what categories will require more financial resource support than others (i.e., furniture rental, catering, staffing, electrical, etc.).

Everyone wants to run events with as little cost as possible. But if you have 200 people on the will-call list and expect 100-200 more for walk up sales, you need to have more than 2 people running the door sales and will-call.

3. Improper Box Office Management
It’s game day. Is your door staff familiar with how to quickly access attendee information? Be prepared for people who forgot “print-at-home” tickets, lost their physical tickets or show up on the wrong night of a performance.

What do different delivery methods (physical vs. print-at-home vs. will call vs. mobile) you have chosen mean to your staff when admitting people to the event. How long does it take to verify each of those types of tickets at the door? Put a system in place to easily confirm attendee transactions for your door staff. Run a test for how long it takes to verify the different ticket types to move people through the door quickly.

Ensure your box office lead knows what authority they have to simply comp an attendee instead of bickering for 10 minutes (and holding up the line) over whether or not they actually purchased tickets.

4. Lack of Flexibility
Events can change. Months of planning can get ruined in a matter of minutes. Be flexible and put back-up plans in place if something does not go according to plan. Anticipate hurdles. Be in regular communication with your ticket buyers to set expectations. Maintain good relationships with your event registration support team—for managing refunds, a canceled event or other scenarios.

Have your cell phone on you at all times to quickly answer last-minute questions or put out fires.

Insufficient Market Research
Know thy audience. Are your event attendees technology-savvy? Active on social media? A mix of techies and non-techies? Do your events normally require cash payment? What will your patrons expect? Some ticket buyers are more familiar with walk-up sales and ordering tickets via mail. While online registration expands visibility of your event, make it clear other methods to buy tickets—include a direct link to your event page (in emails, on social media pages, etc.), list the phone number, etc. Communication is key.

What lessons have you learned the hard way this year? Words of wisdom for fellow event producers? Answer our survey below. Any questions or concerns about event promotion, operations, planning or marketing? Give us a call at (800) 838-3006 x5 or email Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Building relationships with bloggers

How to Build Relationships with Bloggers

bloggers Word of mouth influence is one of the most powerful and organic ways to build buzz around your event or cause. According to Nielsen, 43% of consumers are more likely to make a new purchase when learning about a product or service via social referral. Blogs have become an essential part of the new media system of word-of-mouth. With significant following and one or more digital platforms, the right blogger can help amplify your message and spread the news about you and your events. Read through our tips below for how to establish lasting community connections with bloggers.

1. Target Your Niche
Bloggers often have clear niche interests. This often makes it easier to invite them to your event than other traditional media outlets. As you research, think about bloggers that are relevant and influential in your area. If you are hosting a cooking class at a restaurant, think outside of the box and look for individuals who blog about food from varying perspectives. Find mommy blogs about food preparation, food-to-farm organizations, and of course foodies. Every industry has subcategories and target markets. Pay attention to the blogs that have already written about your competitors; it's more likely that they will be interested in writing to you, too.

Tip: Blog Catalog and Google Blog Search are a few free resources for searching for interest-specific blogs.

2. Reward Their Readers
Sometimes, something as simple as a fully-loaded gift bag is enough to warrant a dedicated blog post. Even better, the goodies included in the bags can also work as giveaways or contest prizes for their readers. You can also offer unique discount codes to your future events or shows for the readers of the blog. Bloggers work as virtual conduits for your message. The potential for your event to go viral relies heavily on nurturing their readership. Don't forget to include a link (not an attachment) to photos and videos associated with your event or with the industry the blogger writes about, that would be appropriate to include along with a blog on your event. Bloggers need visuals to keep their readers' interest!

3. Simplify Your Message
Making your event information easily shareable is key to any media outreach. Bloggers are no different. Organize all of the necessary information for your event including: date, time, location, event images, flyers, parking information, etc. If a blogger doesn't have to spend hours researching your event, they'll be more likely to feature you in their editorial schedule.

Tip: Crafting Facebook, Twitter and Instagram-ready posts can help extend your messaging on varying social platforms. If you've created an event-specific hashtag, you can also start building buzz around your event weeks before it begins.

4. Build Authentic Community
As you begin your outreach, be genuine in your efforts. If you see them posting an article about your show beforehand, comment, share and like it. Retweet their tweets and start following their work in advance so they'll have some context for who you are before your invitation. Don't forget to thank them both publicly and privately for their coverage and treat them like VIP at your event. You never know what a great relationship with a blogger can do for you in the future.

These beginner tips should get your started with your outreach efforts. If you have any questions or comments about inviting bloggers to your events, email us at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 (Option 5).

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Pro Tip: Canceling an Event
For beginner, intermediate and advanced producers

The holidays are near, and sometimes unforeseen winter weather can halt or alter your events calendar. Need to cancel or reschedule your event? Follow the instructions below.

The first step to take in canceling your event is to end sales for your dates and prices.

To Edit Your Event:

  • Click Account located at the top of the page.
  • Next, click Manage Your Events that should appear on the left-hand side of the page.
  • Click the Go! button to the left of the event you'll be canceling.
  • You are now at the page where you can make edits to your event.

To End Sales For Your Event:

  • Click the Dates & Prices tab in the grey bar.
  • Scroll down until you see the blue Your Dates & Prices tab.
  • Find the date/price you wish to close sales for, and click the blue Deactivate link next to the date or price. It will now show up as struck-through, indicating sales are closed.
  • You may also want to add text in the description or title indicating to ticket buyers that the event has been canceled. You can do this under the Details tab on the grey bar.

Next, you'll want to send out a message to ticket-buyers:

  • Click the status tab on the grey bar.
  • Scroll down to Email your attendees then enter the reminder message you'd like to send to your ticket buyers. (If you need to send the message to just one date, you can do so via the drop-down menu right above where you type your message.)
  • Click the Preview Email button. You'll be given the chance to look over the e-mail, then either re-edit, or send it out. The message will be cc'ed to us as well, and once we receive it, we will cancel and refund all orders.

NOTE: There is a fee charged for canceled events in order for us to recoup our credit processing costs. The fee is 5% of total sales plus $.99 per ticket sold. This fee will be added as a transaction to your account, and will be deducted from any future ticket sales.

We hope you never have to cancel any event but that this information is helpful if you need it. If you have any other questions feel free to reach out to us 24/7 at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) or Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Crowdfunding: The Basics

promovideos

Approximately 33% of all online donations made during the year are made in the month of December, according to the Network for Good. With the holidays just around the corner, consider how crowdfunding could help to make your events really count. New to crowdfunding? Read through some of the basics outlined below.

Crowdfunding Defined
Crowdfunding is a method of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet. It is a form of fundraising that uses your network of friends, family and colleagues but often a wider circle than those to financially support a cause or business. In the simplest of terms, crowdfunding connects the “crowds” to individuals or organizations needing funding. With your audience as investors, crowdfunding makes ticket buyers a part of your event well before it begins.

Crowdfunding Broken Down
A main reason why crowdfunding is so successful is because it makes donors feel like they are part of a project that inspires them. Services like Kickstarter and IndieGoGo are the most popular crowdfunding platforms, though not the only ones available. Others include Crowdfunder, Rockethub, Crowdrise and more. Research what best aligns with your needs and select the option that works for you. Each of these products essentially offers the same thing: an online platform that accepts donations, often with some level of reward for the investor. When a customer decides to donate to your cause, you can outline what they receive in return (for example, a limited-edition poster, t-shirt, bracelet, or VIP experience). The cooler the perk, the more likely someone will donate.

Tip: Don't be afraid to set your base donation price low. $1 might seem small, but the key to crowdfunding is getting a large amount of people to donate small amounts of money. People may be more willing to give $1 than $100.

Crowdfunding with Events
A great way to enhance a crowdfunding campaign is to use events as part of the reward for donating. Examples of events that can help build buzz around your campaign would be a kick off party, mini-celebrations for meeting fundraising milestones, events that allow donors to be the first to sample and experience your project, and events to celebrate reaching your fundraising goal.

Crowdfunding with Video
The best way to get individuals to invest in your campaign or cause is to help them first invest emotionally, by showing them what makes it special. People engage with real individuals, aunthentic stories, and compelling visuals. A creative campaign video is the best way to communicate why your story is special. The average success rate of a campaign is about 50% with a video, dropping to 35% without (according to Envato Notes). Be unique and take the time to integrate video into your crowdfunding campaign. Crowdsourcing.Org walks you through how to make a great video for crowdfunding here.

Crowdfunding Timelines
When it comes to Crowdfunding, short campaigns are proven to work better. On average, a 20 to 30 day project has a 60% success rate. The success rate percentage begins to drop after 30 days. Shorter campaigns are also beneficial since you'll get access to the funding quicker and you won't need to spend months planning and tracking a campaign.

Crowdfunding with Friends
Promoting a crowdfunding campaign is basically the same as promoting an event. Build a small network of friends and family to help get the ball rolling on your campaign. Word of mouth is a powerful online marketing tool, and social media buzz is even more effective, especially when you invite your donors to tell their networks of friends. Your friends can be your best community advocates.

These are just the basics of Crowdfunding. If you'd like to talk about how to implement any of these ideas, discuss using our own fee-free donation tool, or simply need help with other event promotion ideas, give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 5) or email Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Pro Tip: Multi-Date Events
For intermediate and advanced producers

Setting up an event with multiple dates and times can take time and effort. We understand the stress it can add for an event producer and we want to help reduce as much stress as possible. Read further for some of our best practices for hosting multi-date events with Brown Paper Tickets.

Adding Multiple Dates
To initiate your multi-date event set-up, you'll need to add a new date for each performance. You can add multiple dates to a single event page by continuing to enter the date information on the “Dates & Prices” tab in the event creation or management process. The individual dates will appear in a drop down menu in the ticket widget on your published event page.

Separate Events for Separate Dates
Depending on the type of event, you might consider creating a separate event for each date (this kind of solution may help better organize dates for daily tours). This also forces customers to make the date decision before they get to the event page, and can decrease customer confusion. If you wish to add separate events for each performance/show, use the “Create a Duplicate Event” link in “Manage Your Event” to reduce some of the data entry. You'll still need to add the date under “Dates and Prices,” but the rest of the information you saved will carry forward.

Note: If your event is an ongoing tour, you will need to input a separate date for each tour slot. However, the date selection list can get out of hand if you add too many dates on a single page. We advise breaking your tours up into manageable chunks, depending on the tour frequency. Consider adding a new event for each season of tours (Spring 2013, Summer 2013, etc), or possibly one per month or week.

Multi-Date Festivals
If you are putting on a multi-day festival style event, there are several ways to approach the ticket set-up. Some organizers prefer to list a single event with a date range (Aug. 30 – Sept. 1, for example), and then create separate price levels for each day's admission (ex: "Saturday Only", "Sunday Only", "Both Days", etc). By slightly adjusting the ticket price copy, you can offer all of the available options in one place and make it easier for attendees to not only select their ticket level, but remember which date they selected to attend.

Some festivals prefer to list a weekend pass as one event and separate events for individual day entry (i.e., “Saturday Only” or “Sunday Only”). Again, this forces customers to make an intentional date choice from the start before purchasing tickets. This is the recommended route if you offer several price categories for each date.

If you'd like more personalized help with setting up your multi-date event, give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) or email Support@BrownPaperTickets.com. We're open 24/7, and we're happy to help.

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Getting Started with Promo Videos

promovideos

Video watching has become a huge part of the way Internet users engage online. With approximately 1.2 billion daily video streams, YouTube has become essential to any organization's promotional strategy. As event producers, creating quality videos for your shows and events can help you sell more tickets and effectively increase your online presence. Get started with promotional videos by reading through our tips below.

Choose Your Video Style
There are several types of videos that can help you achieve your goals. Think about your audience and the message you want to convey. Narrated videos can help you inform or educate the viewer; testimonial videos allow outsider perspectives to influence customer behavior. You might also consider montage videos to provide potential event-goers with a behind-the-scenes look at your event in order to build excitement.

Note that the tone of the video also plays an important part in engagement. Be creative, funny and approachable.

Keep it Short and Sweet
By 30 seconds into an online video, up to 33% of viewers have moved on, and by 2 minutes 60% have moved on (according to TMG). The longer your video is, the harder it will be to retain viewer attention. Keep your video to under a minute and highlight the most important information. Think about the message you are trying to convey and who you are trying to convince.

Tip: Scripting or storyboarding your video can help to keep it concise.

Remember that Quality is Key
As you plan for the equipment needs of your shoot, remember that almost every platform for video hosting and streaming includes High-Definition options. Aim to shoot at 1920x1080 or 1280x720 pixel resolutions. This will ensure that your image is crisp and clear. If you can't afford an HD camera, ask to borrow one from a friend or call local camera shops and check for rental rates. The shops might let you borrow equipment in exchange for a brief shout-out in your video. It's all about building community!

Make it Visually Appealing
People love a show! Without visually appealing graphics, your video becomes a one-way channel of communication. Rather than talking to the viewer, talk with them. By including rich illustrations, imagery, and animation, you offer ways for viewers to engage. Not an expert in graphics animation effects? No worries! Try out free resources like Animoto or GoAnimate to spice up your video promotions.

Don't Forget Your Call to Action
At the end of your video, what do you want people to do? Visit your website? Buy your new album? Buy tickets to your next show? Make it clear where you would like viewers to go. You might consider trying out YouTube's annotation feature, which allows you to easily add a small clickable image that will link viewers to your other videos.

Upload your videos and start spreading the word by promoting online. Looking for more ideas on how to set up promotional videos or simply want more help with your event promotion? Give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 5) or email Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Pro Tip: Embedding Video in Your Event Description
For beginner, intermediate and advanced producers

We know how important the customization of your event page is. That's why in the event creation process, we provide the option to use HTML coding to stylize your page. If you've got an awesome promotional video that you'd like to share with potential ticket buyers, follow the simple steps below to include it with your event description.

  • Log in to your Brown Paper Tickets producer account.
  • Click “Manage Your Events” on the side bar to the left.
  • Under “Your Current Events,” click “Go” next to the event you wish to include video.
  • Click on “Details” in the gray navigation bar.
  • In a separate window visit your video page on your preferred video hosting site (YouTube, Vimeo, etc.)
    • In YouTube, click on “Share” beneath the video player. Then click “Embed.” You'll be provided with an “iframe” code. If you'd like to customize the size of the video, do so in the “Video Size” box below. When you've tailored the video to your needs, copy the code.
    • In Vimeo, hover over the video and click on the “Share” icon to the right. In the “Embed” box, copy the code. If you'd like to customize the layout, click on “Show Options” to change size and color of the video player.
  • Return to the “Details” page of your Brown Paper Tickets event. Paste the YouTube or Vimeo code you copied in the “FULL DESCRIPTION” box in the location where you would like it to appear (at the beginning, middle, or end of the description).

For more information on further customizing your event page with HTML, read through our HTML coding article here. If you have any lingering questions regarding embedding video, call us at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) or Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Five Ways to Build a Solid Media List

MediaLists

Establishing positive relationships with the press can be a daunting task. Fear not! In the digital age, connecting with quality journalists is much easier than you might think. A fundamental part of any media relations effort is maintaining a healthy media list. Follow our tips for building a great media list and start generating positive PR for your events.

1. Identify Target Media Outlets
Create a wish list group of media outlets. Jot down all of the radio and television shows, newspapers, blogs, and magazines that you'd love see your event publicized on. Pay attention to the segments and publications that align with your event goals, themes and industry. If they are vested in the same cause, they'll be more likely to want to learn more about your event as well as more eager to hear from you.

2. Find Key Writers and Editors
Once you've compiled an ideal list of the media outlets, read and watch them, looking for the specific reporters who may have an interest in your story. Find and compile their names, email addresses and phone numbers. Look for individuals with a history of writing on topics related to the theme of your event, gatekeepers for stories related to your event, or people responsible for assigning stories at the media outlet. This step takes the most time, but is actually just as important as identifying the target media outlets.

3. Tailor your email pitch
Customize the emails you send to each journalist with respect to their individual interest and beat. A higher percentage of your media contacts will pay attention to it, write about it and welcome your next email. If you create a large press list, make sure that the angle of the press release matches the media outlet or interest of the reporter you are sending it to.

4. Capitalize on Social Media
If you're not in the financial position to purchase a media list of emails from vendors like Vocus or Cision, look to Social Media to start the conversation. Twitter has become an extremely powerful pitching tool today. Find journalists and bloggers that you'd like to follow and segment them into appropriately labeled lists. You can build lists specific to industry or media type for free!

Note: For tips on how to set up your tailored Twitter Lists, click here.
When you find a publication, journalist, or blogger online, take a look at their Pinterest pinboards to see what informs their media content. Track down each reporter's social media presence and look for opportunites to involve yourself in the conversation.

5. Utilize free PR resources
PR services can be expensive. However, free resources such as HARO are available online for identifying journalists who are already writing stories related to the topic of your event. They may also be able to use you as someone to quote for a story they are already working on.

These are just the basics. For a step-by-step guide on how to put your media list together, read through our resource guide here. Even better, we also offer curated media lists for our event producers free of charge. To inquire about this service or if you'd like more information on media list building contact our Event Promotions team at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 (Option 5).

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Pro Tip: Importing Event Attendees into MailChimp
For beginner, intermediate and advanced producers

Managing your own email marketing campaign can be a lot of work. We feel your pain. That's why with our MailChimp integration, we made sure you could easily upload your ticket buyer information to your current campaign. Follow the basic steps below to get started.

  • Log in to your MailChimp account and create a list for your event.
    • For a step-by-step explanation on how to create lists read through this MailChimp guide.
  • After you've created your new list, log in to your Brown Paper Tickets producer account.
  • Click on “Manage Your Events” on the left hand column.
  • Find the event that you are hoping to pull attendee information from and select “Go” next to the Event Name.
  • In the tool bar at the top of the page select “Promote.”
  • Click on the MailChimp logo under “New Media.”
  • You'll be asked to log in to the MailChimp with your account information again.
  • On the Create a MailChimp Campaign Page click on “Upload Attendee Info” at the top of the page under “Create Your Event.”
  • Select the new email list that you just created in MailChimp from the dropdown menu and click on the “Upload Attendee Details” button. You should see a green confirmation that says “This list has been uploaded.”
  • At the top of the page select the blue text that says “Create Campaign" and continue the normal process for creating an email campaign.

For details on how to continue completing your campaign or if you'd like more information on how to use MailChimp with your Brown Paper Tickets Account, read through our resource guide here. Do you have additional questions or concerns? Feel free to reach out to our Client Services department 24/7 at Support@BrownPaperTickets.com or (800) 838-3006 (Option 4).

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How to Install Google Analytics

Google Analytics

As DIY advocates, we understand the importance of measuring success in affordable ways. When it comes to managing your presence online, tracking results is an easy way to advocate for extra grants, funding, and of course it can help you plan for future events. Google Analytics, used by over 15,000,000 websites worldwide, can help you monitor who is coming to your site, from where, and how often. This information helps you figure out how to plan for and promote your events. Read our tips to get you started with Google Analytics.

Getting started
Before you start using Google Analytics to track website activity, you'll need to create a Google account. First, visit, http://www.google.com/analytics/, signup for an account or login with your existing Google information. You'll be asked to enter in your website address, contact information, etc.

Select your account properties
Before installing the tracking code to your site, make sure you are selecting the correct website type you wish to track. Google Analytics can support varied types of tracking for a number of websites and online configurations. You can organize your tracking reports by users, properties, website types, and more. For most users, selecting a “Single Domain” dashboard is the standard. This is typically used for a singular blog or website.

Setup your tracking code
Once you've completed the signup process, copy and paste the code provided to you in the base HTML of your site. The two places to install the code are the header and the footer of the page. Each of these have advantages and disadvantages. If you add the code to your header, the code will track all visits even if the visitor leaves the page before it has completely loaded but it may increase the load time. If you add the code to your footer, the page will load faster without delays but it will not track the visits of users who leave before all the content has loaded. For instructions on how to install the code on your WordPress site, click here.

Analyze the metrics
After you've logged into the appropriate analytics dashboard, you'll have access to metrics for visit duration, visitor flow, geo-location, device type, and conversation rates. If people are leaving your website on a certain page rather quickly you can adjust the content accordingly to convert people to buying more tickets or merchandise. If more people are visiting your site from a certain geographic area you might consider targeting your marketing efforts better in that city. You can also focus on marketing more or less on a particular device (mobile vs. computer vs. iPad, etc.), depending on the results of your vistor data.

We've only covered the very basics for beginning to track your website or blog with Google Analytics. If you'd like more thorough information on how to make the most out of your account, take a look at SimplyBusiness' Small Business Guide to the Google Analytics.

If you'd like our promotion team to assist you with anything, feel free to email Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 (Option 5).

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Announcing: New Producer Spotlight Videos

Over the last few months we've had the chance to sit down with a few Brown Paper Tickets producers to talk about their experiences with events and why they chose to work with us. You'll also get a behind-the-scenes look at some of the awesome events that they put on.

Producer Spotlights


Behind the Scenes


Testimonials

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Amplify Your Mission Through Low Power FM Radio (LPFM)

Last month, Brown Paper Tickets producers in multiple cities took us up on our offer of assistance connecting them with the resources they need to apply for free Low Power FM radio licenses.

For more information on how your nonprofit or one you love can amplify your mission through radio, contact Sabrina Roach at LPFM@BrownPaperTickets.com or go to: http://community.brownpapertickets.com/Doers/radio.html. Act fast, the application is due October 15th, 2013 and it may take a couple months to pull the application together.

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Pro Tip: Tracking Outside Refferals
For beginner, intermediate and advanced producers

Are you using online advertising, social media, or emails to direct people to your event page? Track where visitors are coming from to buy tickets in the Marketing Reports section of your Brown Paper Tickets producer account. By analyzing which referral sites are getting the most traffic and how ticket buyers are interacting with your online platforms, you could find out which promotional tools to focus more on and see what is selling the most tickets.

Tracking your online campaigns is simple. We'll lay out the tips below:

  • Navigate to your Event Page. Between the backslash after “event” and before the backlash of the event id, enter the keyword you want to associate with your campaign. For example, if you're looking to track how well your marketing efforts on Facebook are going. Use "Facebook" as a keyword (see below).
    - http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/Facebook/15352
    Use this code to link to your event page anytime you're posting from Facebook. Repeat the process for emails, Twitter, Google Ads, etc by simply swapping out "Facebook" for a keyword that matches the appropriate platform.
  • To track your results, log-in to your Brown Paper Tickets account.
  • Select “Marketing Reports” under “Reports” in the drop-down menu on the top left-hand side of the page.
  • Check the box of the event you are tracking and hit the “Generate Report” button.
  • Browse through your visitor activity under the “Traffic by Tracker” pie chart.

If you have any questions regarding referral tracking or any other reports give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) or email Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Media Preview 101

Media Preview 101

If you are producing a visual event, such as a festival, a class where you are creating something unusual, or a staged event with captivating costumes, consider holding a media preview.

The purpose of a media preview is to get publicity and public awareness before your event begins. If the media is interested in your event but has to wait until your show starts to write the story, then press attention will come only after your event is over – and that won't help you sell any tickets. It takes effort to put a media event together, but getting reviews and exposure in the press can help draw a big crowd, making it well worth your time!

Step 1: What is the most visual piece of your event?
Figuring out the key visual elements of your show and deciding who you want interviewed as part of the news story are what you should focus on. If you are having an old-time car rally, pull a couple of the most interesting looking cars for the press. What can the reporter experience as part of the story? Can they ride in a vehicle, play the instrument or participate in any other way? The more interactive the media preview, the more reporters you will attract and the more interesting the story will be.

Step 2: Plan the date and time for your media preview at the easiest time for the media to cover it.
This means weekdays with a start time between 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. If your press event has to be at night, realize that you may have less press in attendance. Less press is better than no press, however it is a resource that you should maximize as much as possible.

Step 3: Invite the media sooner rather than later.
Give the press a notice of 4 to 6 weeks minimum, if possible. You can email invitations, but if you really want to receive press attention, create a physical piece of mail that, helping it stand out from the rest of their mail.

Step 4: Have everything ready in advance.
Make sure you have everything set up before the press arrives. Get your visuals in place. This includes your visual elements, at least one spokesperson for reporters to speak with, and your other “enthusiasts” and/or event attendees who will rave about the show. They will do the talking for you. Your fan club or mailing list would be a great source for your "enthusiasts."

Step 5: At the event, treat the press like royalty.
Give them a freebie, some refreshments if possible, and a fact sheet on your event that inclues the key marketing points that you’d like them to include in their stories. Don't forget to include your business card so, if needed, they can ask questions later. Make sure each media representative gets an equal opportunity for the interviews and visuals he/she needs at the event.

If you could use more help or ideas while planning your media preview, don’t hesitate to call and/or write us! We are at your service at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or (800) 838-3006 (Option 5).

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Make a Difference with Low Power FM Radio (LPFM)

Brown Paper Tickets is a Not-Just-For-Profit company. One way this business philosophy has manifested itself is through projects that may not necessarily result in financial profit, but result in a better environment for people to create and build stronger local communities. Right now, we're working on such a project with LPFM.

On October 15th, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will be opening a window for groups to apply for LPFM stations. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for organizations to own and operate their own local radio station. LPFMs have a limited broadcast range - approximately 3 to 7 miles - and a relatively low set-up cost, especially compared commercial or satellite stations. LPFM is specifically designed to encourage creative production and media access at the hyper-local neighborhood level.

At Brown Paper Tickets, we're excited about LPFM for exactly these reasons. We work with the people who build local culture and economies every day, and we understand the potential that LPFM has to take your organization to the next level. That's why we're building partnerships with producers like you, to provide advice and support to organizations interested in applying for a LPFM license. We can't do it alone, though. Here's how you can get involved:

  1. Apply. If your organization is a registered non-profit or educational institution and you're interested in learning more about applying for a LPFM station, please contact us at lpfm@BrownPaperTickets.com. We'll be happy to provide you with additional information and connect you with our LPFM resource network.
  2. Get the word out. If you're not interested in applying but know of an organization in your area that might be a good fit, let them know about the upcoming LPFM opportunity – more information can be found at: http://community.brownpapertickets.com/Doers/radio.html
  3. Help build support. Interested in LPFM but don't have the resources or interest to run your own station? There are plenty of other ways to help out: Lend space and resources to applicants; host events to raise funds for new stations; or even help create content to go out on the air.

For more information on LPFM and how you can get involved, contact Sabrina Roach at Sabrina@BrownPaper Tickets.com or go to: http://community.brownpapertickets.com/Doers/radio.html.

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Pro Tip: Ticket Widget
For beginner, intermediate and advanced producers

As event producers ourselves, we understand the need to sell tickets directly from your site. It's important to provide potential ticket buyers with several points of purchase. One of the many ways you can choose to sell tickets to your shows is by using our easily embeddable Ticket Widget!

Steps to embedding your Ticket Widget:

  • Log in to your Brown Paper Tickets producer account.
  • Select “Manage Your Events” under “Account” and click “Go!” next to the event you wish to share on your site.
  • Click on the circle icon titled “Linking” at the top of the page.
  • Scroll down to “Link Style 4 – Event Widget” and copy the code.
  • Paste the code into the source files of your website.

Here are some examples of other event producers who have used the widget with success:

Questions? Not a problem! We're open 24/7 and happy to walk you through the process or discuss any other needs for your event. Call (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) or email Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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How to Approach the Edinburgh Festival Fringe

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe will be taking place from August 2nd to the 26th of this year. With 2950 shows currently listed on the Edinburgh Fringe website, the 1,000,000+ visitors have plenty to chose from, but the thought of performing in Edinburgh during this time can be very daunting. Here are some tips on how to approach and survive Edinburgh Festival Fringe in August.

  • Set realistic goals. It is a very expensive festival that should not be taken lightly. Plan your act with purpose.
  • Know your venue. Edinburgh is small, but some venues may not serve you particularly well. When you are trying to create an audience, you don't want to make people work too hard to find you. Try to be close to the action and ensure you have a decent shot at walk ups just before the show.
  • Figure out practical show times. Don't avoid putting on an afternoon show as these audiences can be very receptive. Fitting your show between lunch and dinner also allows you to fill spots in other shows in the evening. Note: it can sometimes be difficult to get an audience after 10 or 10:30pm, depending on the neighborhood and venue.
  • Flyer in groups. Flyering at Edinburgh is a necessary evil to make your presence known. Work in teams and map out a flyering schedule to cover more ground. Don't clutter the design with unnecessary information and ensure you have the venue, time and dates clearly visible. Come up with a unique pitch other than "Come to my show!" If you have room, include a map to highlight where you will be.
  • Promote your show. Write a press release that outlines why your show is unique, and then send it to the media. If you are a musical or theatre group, try to land a spot on one of the Edinburgh Fringe stages on the Royal Mile. If you are a Stand-Up or Cabaret act, find a multi-act show to join. Regardless of the type of show, always make sure you get the word out through social media and email announcements to build your audience.
  • Make time to network. You'll be amazed at who you bump into. The person you're having a beer with may run a venue, be a reviewer, or possibly even help you tour your show. Always embrace an opportunity to open up your network. If nothing else, it should ensure there are a few more familiar faces for next year.
  • Have fun. It is a month-long festival. Make sure you enjoy it, eat sensibly, and try not to party every night. Don't lose heart in the first week. It is tough for everyone, so just keep your chin up and keep going. If it's your first year and you have little following, just give it your all. Good luck!

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Poster Design 101

Posters 101

You've secured a venue, entertainment and a schedule for your event. Now it's time to start promoting! With a beautifully designed poster, you can build organic buzz around your event and watch it spread like wildfire. Follow these tips below to create a powerful event poster.

The Basics

1. Select tools and a style that suits the feeling of your event
Use what you've got! Hand drawn, painted, or cut and pasted collage posters are still relevant and can be quite successful, but if you feel comfortable in a graphics or word-processing software, go for it! Whatever your skill set, decide what style and effect you're going for and back it up with your medium or application. Feeling lost? Do an online image search for the particular type of poster you need to make and soak in the inspiration. If you find something you like that fits the vision for your event visuals, reverse engineer it and then make it your own. Imitation is the highest form of flattery!

2. Choose engaging imagery and give it a great home
Less is more, but there is a big difference between simple and plain. Choose central imagery that is clear but has enough detail to be interesting. A beautifully composed photograph of a performer can be effective, but so can a seemingly unrelated illustration. Many well-done show posters use visual metaphors to illustrate something about the experience of the performance in a somewhat offhanded manner. If you are borrowing imagery, make sure that you use high quality images that are not pixelated, stretched or distorted. Whatever approach you take, create a clear focal point with the imagery through placement. Try placing the image off center, using the rule of thirds. Also, when grouping multiple graphic objects present them in odd numbers so that they feel organic (I.e, 1, 3, 5, etc.).

3. Use fonts that connect to the imagery and keep it clean
Fonts can make or break a great poster. Be unique but not over the top. You don't have to use all of the fancy free fonts you've been collecting. Look to continue the shapes, patterns and textures of your imagery through the design of the letters you use. To be on the safe side, limit the use of various fonts to 2 or 3, and don't use them at more than 4 different sizes. Use more stylized fonts for titles and headings, at a larger size for easy readability from a distance. For body text, use a simple clean font that is easy to read at a small size. Pay careful attention to alignment and be consistent. Don't casually jump back and forth between center, left and right alignment. Limit the use of all caps to headings, and be consistent with capitalization. The difference between the design of a professional and an amateur is often most evident through the treatment of text.

4. Be intentional when selecting colors
Not sure what colors to use? Take hints from the colors of the imagery you've selected! If you're using a photograph, use tones from the actual photo (you can utilize the eyedropper tool if you're using graphics software). Choose contrasting colors. Neutrals are easy on the eyes for small type. High-impact colors like red, orange or yellow, can draw attention to sparingly-selected important details. Remember to continue to connect with the characteristics of your other elements with the selection of color – how does it make you feel? Does it make flow with the textures, forms, and lines of your imagery and fonts? This level of intention will help result in a cohesive end-product.

5. Balance your components
You've picked strong imagery, exciting but readable fonts, and a beautiful color palette! Play with the elements until you've achieved good flow and balance. The eye should move easily from the engaging imagery to easy-to-read text. When arranged properly all elements should come together to create a single unified visual experience. Step back and take a look at the design at its actual size. If you are perceiving disconnected objects, rearrange them until the composition feels harmonious and cohesive.

Looking for more information on posters for your event? Download our resource guide on creating and distributing posters and stay tuned for our article on prepping posters for print!

Need some additional help designing your event posters? Email Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 (Option 5). We're here to help!

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Pro Tip: Reports Series - HTML and Event Descriptions
For beginner, intermediate and advanced producers

An event description is often the first thing people see when purchasing tickets to your event. Take your event description design to the next level with the use of simple HTML code.

Stylized text
Bolding, underlining and italicizing text in your event descriptions can help make important details standout amidst information-heavy event descriptions. For example, bolding the names of acts/artists in your show is recommended for quick visibility.

Separating text into shorter paragraphs through the use of line breaks allows for easier reading and better retention. Be sure to create these breaks within the Event Description box.

The code, when implemented, should have no spaces between the letters and the brackets. Remember to always close the HTML tag (</>) so that the style applies to just the text you want to highlight.
  • Bold - < b > This < /b >
  • Underline - < u> Is < /u >
  • Italicize - < i > Awesome < /i >

Links
Linking in your event description is just as easy as stylizing text. Linking to your venue, information on featured artists, or your website, are all great ways to add value to your event page! Note: You must add “http://” to any link you want to include or your link will not work properly.

The code, when implemented, should have no spaces between the letters and the brackets. Remember to always close the HTML tag (</>) so that the style applies to just the text you want to highlight.
  • Links - < a href=”http://www.yourlink.com”> The Test You want < /a>

Images
While we do allow you to upload images in the “Look and Feel” section of your producer account, you can also embed images at a larger resolution to give your event page some extra pazzazz. You will need to have your image posted somewhere online to link to (this can be from your Facebook or Twitter page if you do not have a website hosting your images). When creating your images, we recommend image resolution widths of 480px or 720px.

The code, when implemented, should have no spaces between the letters and the brackets. Remember to always close the HTML tag (</>) so that the style applies to just the text you want to highlight.
  • Images - < img src="http://yourimagelink.com" >
  • Linked Image- < a href="http://www.linketoyourimage.com ">< img src="http://yourimagelink.com" >< /a >

Videos, Playlists, Picture Galleries
One of the best parts of embedding HTML is the ability to add more advanced audio visuals to the page! Again, while we provide the ability to add videos in the side column of your page, you can also include a larger resolution video on your main event description from sites like Vimeo and YouTube. Additionally, if you use any websites to host your music or podcasts like SoundCloud or Reverbnation, you can copy and paste their embedded audio player. The same is available for picture galleries from sites like Flikr.

The code, when implemented, should have no spaces between the letters and the brackets.
  • YouTube, Vimeo, SoundCloud or Flikr all have the ability to “share” your content. Find that button on the video, song, or photogallery you'd like to include on your page and copy/paste the embed code. If you can customize the size of the content, we recommend selecting a 480px width box.

Interested in discussing how you can further utilize HTML on your Event Page? Give our Client Services Tech department a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) or email Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Top 10 Ways to Use LinkedIn for PR

Festivals

LinkedIn has made its name as the online hub for finding a job or networking with industry peers. What most people don't know is its incredible ability to generate publicity for your company or your event. LinkedIn has more than 200 million users, including the journalists and bloggers who can produce stories about your newsworthy activities, and quote you as an industry leader. Read through our 10 ways to better use LinkedIn as an effective tool for earned media placements, and more!

1. Research Appropriate Media Targets
Look up the media contact you’d like to connect with and learn: where they worked previously, the awards they’ve won, where they went to school, which LinkedIn Groups they’ve joined, etc. Get insight on LinkedIn that can help you to make a stronger pitch through traditional email channels

2. Make Connections
Once you have had an offline conversation with a journalist or blogger, it is fair game to send an invitation to “connect” with them through LinkedIn. Once connected, be careful about which pitches to send them; think of LinkedIn as a private “nudge” to a personal contact that should only be used when you have the perfect story for them.

3. Ask a Friend to Pitch for You
LinkedIn’s core purpose is to make connections – either with people you know or people you want to know. If you’re seeking to connect with a journalist, you can request a LinkedIn connection to make the introduction. What's better than a friend making the pitch on your behalf?

4. Post Educational, Topical Blogs
Write educational, topical blog posts that reference the news that you’d like to promote. Post these blogs on your company webpage, with a LinkedIn “Share” button attached to the blog. If you like, you can subscribe to LinkedIn’s RSS feed, so that your company webpage blog posts will automatically show up as status updates to your company LinkedIn profile. We do recommend posting only the best of these blog posts so that your followers aren't bombarded with updates. Be careful to educate; don’t pitch.

Tip: Blogs set you up as an expert in your industry, making you more attractive for journalists to ask for a quote in the industry stories they are writing.

5. Utilize LinkedIn Today
LinkedIn's online magazine, LinkedIn Today, has millions of readers that could help you and your company be seen as a thought leader. Email the educational, topical blog posts that you created in step 4 to publisher@linkedin.com for consideration of this valuable placement.

6. Ask for Recommendations on Your Product
Like a company testimonial page, LinkedIn has a "recommendations" section. Don’t be shy, reach out to customers who are telling you on the phone and email how much they like your products or service. See if they would be willing to share their love on LinkedIn. Cultivate quotes from the widest variety of customer industries in order to make their quotes more useful for journalists and bloggers.

7. List Company Spokespeople as “Guest Possibilities” on your company product page
Broadcast media producers, print journalists and even bloggers are always looking for great sources to quote for their stories. Make it easy for them to find the right people to quote by listing them, along with a short description on the area of expertise on your page. Don't forget to link to their LinkedIn profile as well!

8. Start a Conversation with “Mentions”
In your status update, start typing the name of the media or industry connection you’d like to draw the attention to. Put a link to your press release or online article that you want to talk about in the status update. The media contact you have connected with is informed in real time that they have been “mentioned” and a response will be much more likely than with an email.

Note: do this sparingly so you don’t spam them.

9. Create/Participate in Groups
They say it’s easier to attract bees with honey than with vinegar, so why not attract more media contacts and bloggers by creating groups! Begin hosting discussions relevant to their beat and topic of interest, and participate in groups already in vibrant discussions. If you post relevant, helpful content you could watch your “connection requests” skyrocket.

Bonus: You can get ideas from topics and questions that come up over and over again in your industry as potential story ideas for future blogs and press releases.

10. Poll Your Groups and Followers
Polls in groups let you to ask members in the group a question, and list up to 5 answer choices for members to vote on. It’s a fantastic way to gather data for a future press release! Try asking the question and then write, “in comments please tell us why you feel this way.”

Tip: To create a poll in a group from the group’s “Discussions” tab, click “Poll” next to the “Start a Discussion” section. Type your question in the “Ask a Question” box. Specify up to 5 answers for the group to choose from. Additional boxes will appear after you enter your first choice.

Are looking for more thorough help utilizing LinkedIn for PR? We'd love to talk you through your plan and strategy. Shoot us an email at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 (Option 5).

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Pro Tip: Reports Series - Event Journal
For intermediate and advanced producers

One of the many useful tools that can help you monitor your event's financial progress is the Event Journal. This report allows you to view ticket-by-ticket sales transactions through a number of filters (such as sales within a specific date range and the source of the funds).

The Event Journal can be found by selecting the Reports tab from the gray bar at the top of your producer account. Select “Event Journal” from the list.

The Event Journal is made up of two sections: Event Journal Filter and Event Journal.

Event Journal Filter allows you to set specific criteria for generating a report.

  • Currency – Select a currency to see how much money you have collected in that specific currency (if you are offering ticket sales in multiple currencies).
  • Account – View how much money has been collected using a specific payment account or gateway, i.e. sales that were processed through the Brown Paper Tickets Credit Card Processor versus those processed into your Custom Merchant Account (Authorize.net, etc), PayPal, Google Checkout, or Amazon Payments account.
  • Type – Select the type of transaction you wish to view, depending on your Brown Paper Tickets account functions. Producers will see the value of Ticket Sales/Refunds associated with events, the Service Fee we shared if you are using your own credit card processor for sales, and VAT/GST/Taxes value collected based on your event's tax settings (when applicable). Venue Owners may see “Venue Fees” for fees collected on ticket sales (when applicable). Affiliates may see “Affiliate Fees” for funds collected through our Affiliate program (when applicable).
  • Source – This filter refers to the online source of the sale, or who is selling your tickets. “Brown Paper Tickets” refers to any sale that came through the standard BPT site. If you have added “agent accounts” with permission to sell tickets, those will be reflected here. Authorized BPT Open Ticket Network affiliates may also appear.
  • “From” and “To” (Date Range) – Allows you to select a specific time frame so that you can see how much was made on a specific date, such as your first On Sale date.
  • Events – Choose which events you would like your report to include. You can choose to view sales for all of your events, or any combination of current and past events.

Once you have selected the criteria for your report, click the “filter transactions” button. If you are a Venue Owner or Affiliate, you do not need to select any events to generate the report.

After you click "filter transactions," the Event Journal section beneath the criteria includes the following information:

  • Id – This column lists the Ticket ID number of the ticket issued and can be matched against the “attendee list” for the event.
  • Entry Date – This column lists the date and time that the transaction was recorded.
  • Event Name – The title of the event this transaction is related to.
  • Event Date – The date of the event this transaction is related to.
  • Price Level – The price name and value of the price purchased (if this is a ticket sale/refund transaction. This field will be blank for other transaction types).
  • Type – The type of transaction that was performed (sale/refund or other fee)
  • Source – Who made the transcaction
  • Account – The payment gateway/type of credit card processor used for the transaction
  • Dep – The value of money collected for the transaction, if applicable (“deposit” of sale or fee)
  • Wdrl – The value of money refunded, if applicable (“withdrawal”- if a refund occurred)
  • Balance – The running total of funds collected up to that date for the selected events.

This report can be printed directly or downloaded.

If you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to speak with our Client Services department

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How to Plan Your First Festival

Festivals

Spring is almost here, and the festival season is upon us! With the weather on your side, a really great festival can easily draw attendees in by the hundreds and thousands while helping to expose your business to a larger audience. Interested in learning how to set up your first festival with success? Here are a few festival basics to get you started.

1. What's your type?
Festivals are mainstays of several types of industries. As you think about planning your festival, try and decide what you can bring to the masses, and surround yourself with people that understand and support that vision. Whether it's food, music, art, or all of the above, determine your goal and start reaching out to groups or individuals you'd like to feature.

Tip: Festivals that have options for all ages reach a much larger audience. Keep families in mind when deciding your theme and booking entertainment.

2. Location, location, location
The location of the festival is almost as important as the type. Indoor or outdoor? College or convention center? Whatever the location, choose a space that people can easily get to and from. Somewhere close to bus lines with good parking is always a plus. Bathroom accessibility is also an important factor.

3. Think about the costs
In this economy, price is an important factor when people decide whether to attend a festival. Consider offering early bird discounts to help generate a buzz weeks or months in advance! You might also consider student, senior, or group rates. Try to keep your general ticket price at a reasonable level so people are intrigued by your festival vision and not put off by the price tag.

Tip: Designing your event for families will help gain popularity and longevity. As you set your prices, think about offering family pack discounts.

4. Helpful security
Safety is important, so it's always a good idea to hire on-site security in case any problems occur. However, make sure that the security presence isn't overwhelming or offputting to your attendees. Keep the muscle to a minimum.

5. Good eats
Whether you're planning a music festival or a carnival, everyone likes to eat. Often times, people get most excited about the type of food and drinks a festival has to offer. As you plan, you may want to think about the local mom and pop food establishments in your area. Building a positive community is important for a festivals success; plus, cross promotion will also help to get the word out. Supporting your local businesses help gives your festival a local identity and treats your out-of-town guests to an unforgettable experience.

6. Stay organized
Make sure to keep painstaking track of who is playing, when and where. Once those details are finalized, share it with the public! An attendee being able to plan their whole experience can help build excitement around a festival. Our custom Producer Page can help with this, or, if your festival's a little more complicated, we work well with many calendar programs.

Would you like more in-depth assistance on setting up your first festival? No problem! Shoot us an email at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 (Option 5). We'd love to help.

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Pro Tip: Reports Series - Attendee List
For intermediate and advanced producers

Last month we introduced our Pro Tips: Reports Series. For part two, we will discuss the Attendee List. This report allows you to see who is attending your event, what type of ticket they purchased, and marketing demographics to help grow your current mailing list.

To view the Attendee List, select “Reports” from the gray bar at the top of the page, and “Attendee List” from the menu on the left. Select an event from the drop down menu and click “select event.” You can only view the Attendee List for a single event at one time, but if your event has multiple dates you can filter attendee information by event date.

Bonus – If you want to see attendee information from a past event, follow the link on the top right labeled Show Older Events.

Door List
The default Attendee List is the Door List, which helps you check-in attendees on the night of your event. This report includes the name of every person who purchased tickets, organized into sections for each ticket delivery method (Will Call, Print-at-Home, Open Ticket Network, Mobile Tickets, and Physical Tickets). The final section displays Refunded Tickets. Each section is in alphabetical order by Last Name, followed by First Name, Quantity of tickets, Date and time of event and Price Level of ticket purchased (ie: Adult, Child, VIP etc). You will also see the attendee's seat assignment if your event offers reserved seating. Print or download the Door List using the links in the top right corner of the page.

  • Will Call - Use this section to check-in patrons who opted to go “paperless” - they did not receive a physical ticket or print a ticket at home.
  • Print-at-Home – This section lists patrons who chose to receive printable tickets via email to print on their own. They should have tickets in hand, but this is a back-up list in case they forgot or had a printing disaster!
  • Open Ticket Network – These patrons purchased a ticket in person at one of the authorized Brown Paper Tickets walk-up locations. Patrons will have a plain-paper ticket, not a standard BPT physical ticket, with an order number that you can match against this list (or a barcode that you can scan with our mobile scanning app).
  • Mobile Tickets – These patrons purchased tickets via mobile phone. They will pull up a ticket image on their phone screen, which includes a barcode that you can scan.
  • Physical Tickets – These patrons purchased tickets over the phone or online and chose to have tickets mailed to them.
  • Refunded Tickets – This section displays the names of patrons who cancelled and refunded their ticket purchase.

Complete List
The next Attendee List option is the Complete List. The Complete List includes all of the Door List info (organized by delivery method), as well as any available ticket buyer contact information (phone/address/email). If you added a "questionnaire" to your event, your ticket buyers' answers appear in the farthest right columns of the Complete List (scroll all the way over!).This list can be downloaded into an Excel tab file to merge with other lists you may have. MailChimp would be a great tool utilize this information.

Bonus – To download the Complete List, scroll over to the far right of the page and select Download.

Name Tags
This tool can be used to print individualized name tags for your event attendees. You can select the Name Format and whether the Price Level, Event Date, attendee's City/State, and/or Organization Name will appear on the name tag.

Seat List (for reserved seating events)
The Seat List is a ticket inventory management list for events with reserved seating. The first section itemizes the seats that are still open/available for purchase, arranged by Section, Row, and Seat. The second section itemizes seats that are NOT available for purchase, followed by the name of the purchaser. This list can be downloaded or printed.

Chart (for reserved seating events)
The Chart section displays your seating chart as it appears in our system, color-coded by section. Seats marked in bright orange are NOT available for purchase. Seats marked in their section's color are still available for purchase. The chart view helps you see which sections have sold quickly and which could use some promotional work to fill seats!

If you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to speak with our Client Services department

In the next installment, we will review the reports section for your Event Journal.

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Facebook 101

Facebook 101: Creating Newsworthy Content

facebook

Today's social media use is staggering: 210,000 years of music played on Facebook, 163 billion tweets sent, 950,000 daily Google+ signups, and 575 Instagram likes per minute. As a band, team, or business, one might wonder how to keep up and where to centralize efforts. Our two cents: Despite being the oldest of the bunch, Facebook still stands strong with over 1 billion monthly active users. Here are 5 tips to make sure you and your events stay relevant in the social space.

1. Schedule out news
Usually, providing a lot of content online is a good idea. However, the opposite should be done on Facebook. An easy way to get ignored, even unliked, is to post too frequently. Limiting your posts to only your highest-quality content will make your current and potential fans more eager to engage. As a general rule, try limiting to 2-3 engaging posts a day at most.

2. Post about trending topics
One of Facebook's many hidden features is Aggregated Topics. This service groups mentions of similar interests. For example, if several individuals are talking about the movie premiere of The Hobbit, each person's post is grouped as a sub-post. When mentioning a trending topic, you increase the likelihood of appearing in user timelines and having your content shared among their friends. Holidays are a great time to do this.

3. Drive in manual
Managing your Facebook page can be tough when you're busy booking a tour, rehearsing a burlesque show or scheduling a workshop, but taking a minute to post something engaging to connect with your followers is worth it. Studies have shown that content shared from third-party apps is more likely to be ignored. Plan your posts ahead of time offline in a spreedsheet or Word document, then logon and submit your daily post in real time.

Note: Facebook's algorithms shows preference to manual posts when deciding what should show up on users' newsfeeds. Make your outreach efforts count.

4. Engage with variety
When deciding what to share, remember to vary in topic and type. Mix in a behind-the-scenes sneak peek video setting of up an event, or throw in a link to an interesting article related to your industry. The less stagnant your content is, the more likely it will be shared and commented on!

Tip: Posts that include videos, pictures, and polls receive the highest engagement rates.

5.Post what you would share
This tip seems relatively simple, but it should drive your content strategy. Put yourself in your customers shoes and write in creative ways they would likely share with their friends. This is true for content and voice. With each post, ask yourself: Is this post heavily promotion or marketing based? If the answer is yes, try again.

Bad example: Buy tickets to our EDM Dance. The best fun you'll ever have at the best event you'll ever attend for $50.
Good Example: The ____ (venue) for the EDM Brooklyn Extravaganza is rumored to be haunted! Here's to a night of crazy fun. (post link)

Bonus: Be Prepared for Drastic Changes
While the tips above may assist your social strategy, note that Social Media changes every day and Facebook is no stranger to implementing extreme user interface modifications. Follow tech blogs to learn about the updates and possibly advantageous features to help your page stand out, and keep your strategy versatile so you can roll with the punches.

Facebook's new Graph Search is just one of the many new tools they are rolling out. The new social searching function provides more opportunities for exposure of your page and your events by drawing on your current and past page content, as well as product and location information. Big brands and little brands have equal opportunity for discovery by simply being active on their pages.

Looking for more help integrating these tips into your social strategy? Give our Event Promotions team a shout at (800) 838-3006 (Option 5) or email us at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Brown Paper Tickets at SXSW

Next week is SXSW and we've got lots of cool things planned including a Party Bus, Day Party, and some awesome giveaways. This year, you'll find us stationed at booth #107 and #109 from March 10th - 13th. A team of Brown Paper Tickets reps will be on hand to answer any questions you might have, and give away gift baskets with goodies from some of our event producers. Below is a brief list of things we have going on in Austin:

Looking for more info on our whereabouts during SXSW? Follow us here!

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Join us for the launch of our national campaign in support of Low Power FM Radio (LPFM)

Gibson Guitar Showroom | March 12th | Austin, TX

Thousands of new neighborhood radio stations will become available in urban and rural areas throughout the United States. The broadcast reach of these radio frequencies will be 2.5 - 3 miles in most cities and 7 -10 miles in suburban and rural areas. This opportunity to apply for a Low Power FM license is only available to nonprofits, ad hoc community groups, educational institutions, tribal governments, and government agencies. This is a one-time chance to get more non-commercial voices and music on radio stations that truly serve our local communities. It is not likely that we will get this chance again, especially in cities.

We are helping to get the word out about the application deadline: October 15, 2013. Through our Doer Program, we are supporting applicants with assistance in building their business model, figuring out how to pay for the start-up costs, and making their new radio station sustainable.

In Seattle, we're already supporting several organizations in applying and we've identified $9 million in public agency funding for the 8 frequencies that are available. We're creating a model that can be replicated nationally!

We'll be launching our national campaign in support of LPFM at South By Southwest in Austin on March 12th at the Gibson Guitar Showroom (3601 S. Congress Ave, Austin, 78704). If you're in town, come find out more while enjoying Bloody Marys and breakfast tacos on us. Big thanks to our presenting sponsor, Gibson Guitar, for donating their Austin showroom for this special event.

For more information on LPFM and how you can get involved, go to: http://community.brownpapertickets.com/Doers/radio.html

See you in Austin!

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Pro Tip: Reports Series - Event Reports
For intermediate and advanced producers

One of the many useful tools that Brown Paper Tickets offers is a reports generator. This tool allows you to track your sales in detail and helps to better plan your marketing campaign. In the coming weeks, we will be discussing the many types of reports offered and their particular functions. This week, we will discuss Event Reports.

The Event Report feature can be found under your Reports tab in the gray area. In the Reports Menu on the left, select Event Reports.

Event Reports allow you to see all of your current events that are on sale. The top box below the Event Reports Filter is "Events." Here you can choose to generate a report that will show results for either a single event or multiple events.

  • The next title below is Event Reports. This is where the information from your event or combined events will display.
  • The first section, Sales by Price, allows you to see the number of the different sales of ticket prices. For example, if you had multiple tiers you would be able to see how many tickets were sold at the top price down to the lowest price.
  • In the next section, Sales by Date, you can view the sales for an event that has multiple dates. For example, if you were doing a two day event you would be able to see how much you are selling per individual date and populate combined totals.
  • In the Sales by Delivery Method section, you can see what option people chose to have their tickets delivered (Physical, Will Call, Print-at-Home, Mobile or Open Ticket Network).
  • In Sales by Type, you can see the number of the different sales of ticket types. For example, how many Adult, Children, Senior, VIP tickets were sold and how much they each made individually and combined.
  • In the Sales by Seller section, you can view who sold tickets for your event. Most of the time you are going to see Brown Paper Tickets and your log in if you record transactions. You will also see anyone else with a BPT log in who sold tickets for your event.
  • Finally, the Sales by Payment Account section shows how people are paying for their tickets depending on how you have set up payments. For example, it may show Brown Paper Tickets processor, Paypal, Custom Merchant Account (Authorize.net) or Cash if it was sold through an Open Ticket Network.

If you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to speak with our Client Services department

In the next installment, we will review the reports section for your Attendee List.

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Event Titles Tips

How to Write the Perfect Event Title

Fundraising

Crafting the perfect title for your event is an important task that is often overlooked. By spending a little more time thinking about what makes your event special, you could make it stand out above the rest, improve your Search Engine Optimization, and more! Check out some of our favorite event title tips to get you started.

Brevity Is Key
Your title should be a brief summary of what your event is about; details can be presented in your short and long description.

Bad Example: FOLKFEST 2013 AT SUPER CAMPGROUND OUTSIDE OF BOISE, ID MUSIC FRIENDS DANCING CAMPING feat. JOHN DOE, JANE JONES, WOODIE GUTHRIE COVER NIGHT $20 ALL MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND
Good Example: Folkfest 2013 Memorial Day Campout feat. John Doe, Jane Jones and More!


Be Brief, But Be Specific
While "Girls Night Out" is perhaps an accurate description of your event, it misses the mark for a title by not telling ticket buyers anything about your event. An event title should summarize what your event is about, not categorize it. To grab the attention of ticket buyers, get directly to what they want: the artist's name, the play that will be performed, the event's beneficiary, etc.

Bad example: An Evening of Music and Giving 2013
Good example: Pianist John Smith Plays the Songs of Chopin for Cancer Research


Avoid Redundancies
A good strategy for keeping your title brief is to avoid restating what your ticket buyers already know. Keep in mind that your ticket buyers can see your venue and your date everywhere else, so best practice is to make your title what they can't already see.

Bad example: 2/22/2013 -- METAL SHOW -- METAL STAN'S METAL BAR – ALBEQUERQUE, NM -- AXE SLAYER, GOAT BLOOD + TBA
Good example: Axe Slayer and Goat Blood TOUR KICKOFF (more TBA)


Check Your Spelling
This cannot be stressed enough--even if you double-checked, triple-check! While a typo in your description may be overlooked, an error in your title will stick out like a sore thumb and make your event seem less professional or credible. Plus, depending on the error, it might make your event harder for ticket buyers to find.

Put Your Best Foot Forward
Start your title with the biggest draw for your event to avoid burying your lede. For example, if your event involves a popular local figure, a catered dinner and dancing, mention the popular local figure first.

Bad example: Acme Events Presents a Ballroom Dancing and Dinner Party Featuring John Smith
Good Example: John Smith Book Signing with Dinner and Dancing!


Quotes Are Not Always Necessary
We live in the age of the Internet, where quotation marks can mess up various search results. Consider whether quotes are needed before putting them in your title.

Bad example: PS 123 Fundraiser "Spaghetti Dinner" 2013 Good example: Teaching Children to Say "Please" and "Thank You"

Tip: If you're about to put your whole title in quotes, it's a good indication that your quotes don't have to be there.


Need clarification or just want to speak to someone about your event? No problem! Our Event Promotions team is happy to hear from you. Give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 5) or email us at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Pro Tip: Mobile Ticket Scanner App
For intermediate and advanced producers

Whether you are planing a small festival or a strict capacity event where you need to keep an accurate head count, our self-empowering Mobile Ticket Scanner App is a security tool you'll want to use.

The Scanner App helps you monitor admission so you always have an accurate head count at the door. With three easy set-up steps, you can be scanning tickets to ensure that you don't over-fill the room or admit the same ticket twice. Once you've activated your event for mobile scanning, simply download the app on your iDevice or Android and log in. Center the camera over the barcode and a message will confirm whether the ticket is "Ok!" or a "FAIL!" If the ticket is damaged and your phone is not able to read the barcode, you can manually enter the code into the phone. You will also be able to "Unscan" a ticket so that if someone needs to leave and come back they will be allowed to "Scan" back in.

  • For step-by-step instructions on how to activate your event for mobile scanning and scan tickets, read through our Mobile App resource guide.

  • Bonus: This application allows you to scan all Brown Paper Ticket ticket types: physical, print-at-home, and mobile.

If you'd like more clarification on how to best utilize our Mobile Ticket Scanner App, feel free to contact our Client Services Department 24/7 at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4).

If you have questions regarding ticket scanning for large scale events, please send an inquiry to Rentals@BrownPaperTickets.com with information about your event.

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Search Engine Optimization

How to Optimize Your Events for Search Engines

Fundraising

You've tapped out your financial resources for promoting your event, but you still need to get noticed on the Web. No problem! By spending a few extra minutes fine-tuning the content you already have, your event could end up at the top of a search result list! We've compiled a few of our favorite tips for optimizing your events in search engines, better known as Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

Choose a memorable, descriptive title for your event
Most event pages (including Brown Paper Tickets) will place the title of your event prominently at the top of the page, as well as embed it in the website's source code. Search engines use these titles to help group your event with other keyword searches and to indicate what the main topic of the page is. Your event title is a great opportunity to give search engines the right impression!

Bonus: Short and original titles make it easier for your potential ticket buyers to remember, search for, and share your event.

Bad example: An Evening of Music and Theatre
Good example: Acme Theatre Company Sings the Songs of Stephen Sondheim

Mix in keyword text with your images and videos
An eye-catching show poster or behind-the-scenes video are great ways to add extra value to your event pages. Make sure to couple those awesome elements with purposeful text that a search engine can understand. In your event description, use keywords that are similar to your event and type out any information you'll want search engines to be able to find.

Bonus: YouTube videos that are embedded onto event pages will show up on Google video indexes without a sitemap (no extra coding necessary!).

Share your event link socially
Have a Twitter or Facebook? Start sharing the event link like crazy! The best way to get your event viral promotion online is through social sharing. Create hashtags (#) on Twitter for last-minute contests or giveaways. Post behind-the-scenes photos on Facebook of bands or venues. Word of mouth marketing online has changed drastically because of social media.

Link early and often
In addition to posting your event link on Facebook and Twitter, make sure to link to your event page on any blogs or websites you have access to. Link to other relevant pages from your event page or website, as well. Search engines crawl the Internet by following links to and from other pages to get a better idea of how your page interacts with the rest of the Web.

These are just a few tips for getting your event pages search engine optimized. Want a refresher on SEO and how to make your brand more visible online? Check out these awesome infographics from Rise Interactive and BloggingPro.

Want to bounce ideas off our Event Promotions team? Give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 5) or email us at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Pro Tip: Fee-free Donation Tool
For beginning, intermediate and advanced producers

Our fee-free Donation Tool makes it quick and easy for your ticket buyers to give a little extra to your cause, event, or organization! When you're using your own credit card processor (i.e. Custom Credit Card Processor, PayPal, Google Checkout, or Amazon Payments), the Donation Tool allows your ticket buyers to either chip in on top of a ticket purchase, or donate much-needed funds even if they can't attend. Because you have enough to worry about, donations are not subject to any service fees so that the money can go where it matters most: into your events.

To set up a donation price:

  • Log in to your Brown Paper Tickets account and select "Manage Your Events"
  • After clicking "Go!," select "Dates & Prices"
  • Under "Add a Price," choose "Show Advanced Price Options"
  • Beneath "Sale Type" choose "Donation." A donation price can be "Fixed" in which buyers donate an amount that you specify, or "Variable," which allows buyers to enter an amount of their choice.

As always, our Client Services department is available at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) or Support@BrownPaperTickets.com to answer any further questions you may have regarding our Donation Tool!

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Holiday Promotions

Top 4 Holiday Promotions to Sell More Tickets

Fundraising

The holiday season opens up many affordable and creative opportunities to sell out your event early. Take a look at our top 4 best holiday selling secrets below.

1. Ask for calendar listings. Calendar listings are a great way to expose your event to your neighboring communities looking for new, seasonal activities. Because more families look for things to do during the holidays, local media will give seasonal event calendars more attention and may be interested in covering your events. It's a great chance to begin establishing a working relationship with the media, and you never know – your holiday event might draw enough interest to get a reporter sent out to write about it!

2. Add a charitable element. The holidays are a perfect time to give back! Partner with local nonprofits or other area fundraisers to build a positive community. Both you and the charity you work with will benefit from good exposure from the cross promotion during a time when people are feeling a little extra philanthropic.

Bonus: Local media might also be more interested in writing about your event if there is a “feel-good” element to it, making it easier for you to receive press coverage!

3. Package deals for groups. During the holidays, families reunite, friends return from school, and groups of people are ready to go out on the town! Packaging your tickets and offering group discounts will make it easier for ticket buyers to choose your event as their holiday entertainment.

4. Share discount codes closer to the event. The 12 days of Christmas, 7 days of Kwanzaa, or 8 days of Hanukkah are great tools for building buzz around your event and promoting higher traffic on your purchase page. If you release the discount codes over your Facebook or Twitter, you'll also encourage higher engagement on your social sites and maybe even gain some new followers.

These tips are just a few ways to get your event rolling during the holiday season. If you'd like to bounce some ideas off our event promotions team, we'd be happy to hear from you. Give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 5) or email us at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Nonprofits Invited to Learn How to "Own" the Airwaves Across the U.S.

Are you a nonprofit? Then time to dream big! Your nonprofit has an opportunity to "own" a piece of the airwaves, and it’s easier than you might think.

On November 30th, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced that on October 15, 2013, nonprofits can apply for small low-power FM radio signals across the country. These radio signals will reach 3 to 10 miles, serving communities in a similar way to how neighborhood and community blogs reach their communities. Imagine local news and music that can make a difference in your community. Help your local music scene flourish. Use the station as a tool to organize, to accomplish community aspirations, and empower young people and marginalized voices through media work and telling your own stories.

Low-power FM equipment isn't too expensive and you'd have multiple years to raise the money. As social entrepreneurs, we believe in building community – in bringing people together to make a difference.

Our Brown Paper Tickets Doer, specializing in Radio/New Media, Sabrina Roach, will be holding monthly skill building workshops in Seattle to help nonprofits gain the knowledge and resources to succeed. Videos from the session will be posted online with PDFs of support materials and "how-to" guides. In addition, she can help connect you with funding sources and a national network of organizations working in various regions to support applicants.

Save your spot and register early, here!

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Pro Tip: One-on-one Personalized Support
For beginning, intermediate and advanced producers

Are you a Seattle-area producer or going to be in the area soon? Ever wish you could get some one-on-one training on using our many site tools? Now you can! We have a resident Event Tech, Michelle Sunnyday on hand to help answer all your questions. She can take you through everything from setting up your account and events to reading reports and utilizing your Social Media tools. Shoot her an email at Michelle@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 ext. 7027 to set-up an appointment.

Not in the area but want to speak with a Client Services representative directly? Give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (option 4) anytime.

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Secure your audience

How to build attendance for your event's season

Fundraising

Filling your venue show after show can seem stressful at times, regardless of whether you operate in a small or large community. But with careful planning, a solid strategy and some creativity, you can turn most, if not all, obstacles you encounter in your favor. We recently attended the Contact Ouest conference in Whitehorse where Stéphane Gauthier, the general and cultural director of the Carrefour Francophone de Sudbury, and Lionel Brideau, the cultural coordinator at RADARTS, shared some of their advice and insights on making the most out of your event's season.

1. Strive to create a complete artistic experience that will mesmerize your public and make them want to attend future shows. How do you do that? Involve the artists and their agents! Make sure that they are well taken care of, and well fed once they arrive at your venue, especially if they have been travelling. Allow for a hospitality budget. If they play at hundreds of different venues every year, the special detail or attention you provided in welcoming them will make them want to give the best of themselves on stage and will help your artists remember your venue in a positive light.

2. Rally the community behind your event. Try involving your community by recruting local volunteers willing to work for free admission to the event. Organize some workshops with the artists the day before (or after) the show. Make sure you utilize all of your networks in annoucing your event: your mailing list, your friends and family, their friends and family, the artists' networks and mailing lists. By doing so, you will have created a sustainable network around your event.

3. Manage and lessen the risks. You've only sold a few tickets the day before the show and the artists are already in town? Be creative. Plan a flash mob downtown with the artists. Ask them to walk and play in the streets or at the public market. This exposure is likely to raise the number of attendees and could also result in you getting some news coverage. What if a well sought-after artist cancels the show with little notice? Let his agent write and send off the news release. In the meantime, make sure you have a solid back-up plan and announce it on your website. Most importantly, do not burn your bridges. Be sure to reach out to the artist and tell them that they are always welcome anytime to play at your venue. Finally, what if you've only sold a dozen tickets in your 400 seat venue? You can turn a potential catastrophe into an enjoyable experience both for the artists and the attendees by bringing everyone on stage. Install small tables and chairs onstage and invite the audience to an intimate concert.

4. Look for partnerships, especially in smaller communities. Visit your local organizations, schools and retail stores and think of an interesting way of involving them with your event, whether it be a dinner-and-a-show bundle ticket, setting up a workshop at a school in exchange for a number of tickets, or any other collaboration that you see fit. Think of the demographics of your community, what type of audience will be interested in your show, and how you can make your event most attractive to them.

Crafting a successful events season doesn't have to be all tedious work. It can also be an opportunity to reach out in new and creative ways to your community. Remember that the more you seduce your audience the day of the show, the more likely they will be to come back in the future.

Would you like to brainstorm how these ideas apply to your community? Reach out to our Event Promotions team at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or (800) 838-3006 (Option 5). We'd love to hear from you!

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Pro Tip: Event cancellation tips
For intermediate and advanced producers

As an event producer, you will want your events to go as planned. However, sometimes there are forces of nature that have a mind of their own that can get in the way of your progress. When this happens, always know that Brown Paper Tickets is here to help you with damage control.

What to do for an event cancellation
Contact our Client Services department at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) or Support@BrownPaperTickets.com (calling usually warrants a quicker response) as soon as you are aware that the event will be canceled or rescheduled! Our support staff can guide you through the steps to make the cancellation process simple for you and your buyers. 

To cancel an event, we will:

  • Facilitate contacting your ticket buyers in one email blast by using the "Email your attendees" function (located in the "Status" area when managing your event).
  • Process full refunds immediately for your ticket buyers when using the Brown Paper Tickets credit card processor or a custom credit card processor.
  • Assist in changing the details of your event, provided that a rescheduled date is known.

Things to keep in mind as you plan your cancellation:

  • Any orders placed through PayPal Basic, Amazon Payments, or Google Checkout will need to be refunded directly by you.
  • A cancellation fee is applied per ticket sold.  You can refer to our pricing page under "Additional Services" at http://www.brownpapertickets.com/pricing.html.  We can help facilitate the cancellation fee in an "IOU" manner, where the amount would be deducted from your next event's revenue.
  • In line with our Not-Just-For-Profit philosophy, we feel that in the event of a reschedule, ticket buyers can always opt for a full refund of their ticket purchase.

Need more clarification on how to cancel your event? Reach out to our Client Services department 24/7 at (800) 838-3006 (Option 3 or 4) or Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Email campaigns

4 tips to crafting an awesome email campaign

Fundraising

We know that promoting a show can be time-consuming and expensive. Don't fret! You can easily and inexpensively craft an epic email campaign to help fill the house weeks before your event. Check out some of the tips below for adding powerful email tools to your promotion plan.

1. Choose engaging subject lines: When your email pops up in your ticket buyer's inbox, you have a very small window of opportunity to catch their attention. Oftentimes your subject line will determine whether they delete or save your email. As you craft these phrases, think of specific things that your reader will gain by opening and reading your message.

Example: “3 ways to sell tickets online” is stronger than “Selling tickets online”

2. Maximize your clicks: As you build your email, try to balance the amount of text and graphics on the page. The content of the email should naturally draw readers' attentions to the links (in this case, your event link or purchase site). Although buttons and graphics make emails more attractive, don't forget to include plain-text links as well.

Tip: Research shows that most readers respond better to bold and highlighted links.

3. Avoid spam filters: Most email providers have strict spam protection to block unsolicited emails from reaching their customers. To make sure that your message isn't accidentally marked as spam, try to avoid using these words: save, discount, free, 100%, guarantee. Subject lines with these words have a higher chance of being marked as spam, but try to steer clear of using them in your email body, too.

4. When to schedule: Your email is done and it has awesome graphics, text and links! Now you have to decide when to send it. Think about your audience and when they may be more likely to clear out their inboxes. Studies have shown that the best days to send an email are Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Mondays can be hectic for people recovering from the weekend, while Thursdays and Fridays they may be preparing for the weekend. These may not be the norm for all audiences. Try to plan for the demographic of your event or industry.

Those are the basics! Email campaign management is a tough thing to tackle but well worth the effort in the end. If you're looking for more information on how to integrate emails into your promotion plan, check out MailChimp's great resource center. You can also check out this MailChimp integration guide that tells you how to send emails right from your Brown Paper Tickets account.

If you'd like to bounce ideas off someone as you prep for your awesome email campaign, feel free to reach out to our event promotion team at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or (800) 838-3006 (Option 5). We'd love to hear from you!

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Pro Tip: Duplicating events
For intermediate and advanced producers

As a Brown Paper Tickets producer, you are provided with a bevy of tools to help manage your events with ease. One of these special features is event duplication. Event duplication works great for reoccurring, similar or annual events, and utilizing it can save you from having to look for old event descriptions and graphics that you no longer have access to.

Event duplication is now easier to access than ever.

  • Log in to your your account and click on Manage Your Events.
  • Click on “Go” next to the event to be duplicated.
  • Next you will see a link under the green status bar that says “Create a duplicate event.”
  • Click on this and the next screen will show you “Get Started” on the right hand side.
  • Click on "Get Started" to move to the next page. This is where you will see that the full event description from the previous event has been duplicated.

Note: While all of your prices will carry over, you will need to add all new dates to your duplicated event.

If you have any questions or concerns setting up your duplicate events, please feel free to contact our Client Services department at (800) 838-3006 (Option 3 or 4) or Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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How to get press coverage!

How to get press coverage for your business or event

Fundraising

Have you ever picked up the newspaper and wondered how a business received press coverage? Always felt like press was out of your scope? Good news: it's not as hard as you may think! As long as you know how to tell your story and who to tell your story to, you're on a path to publicity. Here are three simple steps and tips to get started.

1. Create your target media list
Before you begin reaching out to press, it's important to build a targeted media list for more purposeful communications.

  • Build a publication wish list. Include radio, television, newspaper, magazine, and blog publications you’d like to be in. Think about what your customers read or watch and make note of those.
  • Build a list of reporters you find in those publications who are writing stories that are related to you.
  • Make note of the angles and themes being discussed in those publications. This will help shape your release.

2. Tell your news story

  • Evaluate your cause. What makes you different from the rest? Your answer will be your news hook.
  • Write your press release in old school 5 W's style, the who, what, when, where, and why, to cover all of your points.
  • Support your story with specific, measurable facts to prove your point to make your press release stronger. Avoid generalities.
  • Write a creative, newsworthy headline in eight words or less. This step is critical. If it's not intriguing, they may never open the email in the first place!

3. Pitch your news story

  • When you are ready to send your story, put your release in the body of the email, not as an attachment. Many computers won’t allow attachments to be opened. We don't want your efforts to be wasted!
  • Send a short, personalized pitch letter to each journalist on your list with your press release.
  • Schedule your press around other news worthy dates. Holidays are a great place to start.
  • If possible, send your release in advance. The more time you give the reporter, the easier it will be to land the pitch.
  • If you have a phone number, you may call the journalist the next day to see if they received your release and to answer any questions. If the journalist is not interested, politely thank them and hang up. If you do not have a phone number, folow up by email after a week or two.
  • Avoid spamming. Press releases and press “pitches” need to be tailored to the specific reporter receiving them. Take the time.

Good luck and remember to be patient. It's unlikely for a story to be placed on the same day you send the release. Sometimes they will use it when it fits into their schedule, but that could be months down the road. Lastly, remember to keep your relationships positive. A reporter might not pick up your story today, but they might in the future!

Looking for an example? Click here.

For additional help with PR and pitching, send our PR cognoscente, Barb Morgen, an email at: Barb@BrownPaperTickets.com, and she'll be happy to help you!

In the Seattle area? Great news! Barb will be hosting a FREE PR workshop on how to get media to notice you on September 11th. Sign up here!

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VetTix Integration

Fundraising

Will you have any empty seats at your next event? Don’t let those seats go unused -- donate them to a veteran!

Brown Paper Tickets now allows you to donate seats for veterans and their families with the touch of a button. You can also allow your ticket-buyers to purchase an extra ticket to say thank you to a vet. Why? It's part of our company's business ethos to play fair, give back, and say thank you to US Veterans.

How will the tickets get to a veteran? Brown Paper Tickets' partnership with the Veteran Tickets Foundation, also known as VetTix, makes it easy! VetTix has been successfully distributing tickets to veterans and their families since 2008; they ensure that the tickets get into the right hands in time for your event.

Important things to note:

  • You can easily enable ticket donations to VetTix through the "Promote" section of an event.
  • When you elect to donate a quantity of tickets to VetTix as a ticket buyer or event producer, they are non-refundable.
  • In your attendee list, you will only see the block of VetTix that you donate or that your ticket buyers donate under "Print at Home." There will not be a specific person's name associated with the tickets, but ticket ID's and barcodes act as normal.

Utilizing VetTix donations is an every day way to say thanks to our brave veterans.

Want to talk more about this option? Reach out to our Client Services department any time of the day. We have 24/7 support ready and willing to help you get VetTix donations set up. Simply call (800) 838-3006 (Option 3 or 4) or email Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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Pro Tip: New event creation and management features
For beginning, intermediate and advanced producers

As some of you know we've recently revamped our event creation and management pages! While all of your favorite tools still exist, they may have been moved around a bit. In addition to this, we've introduced a number of cool new tools and layouts adjustable to your specific needs to help make your event set-up easier.

Below is a quick overview of the changes:

  • Redesigned look and feel. We've added new graphics, icons and colors to help you navigate your event creation pages more intuitively.
  • Sectioned event creation/management. This new feature allows you to edit individual sections without having to scroll through large amounts of information.
  • Helpful information boxes. The new expandable info boxes were added to help guide you through each field in the event creation process.
  • Ability to email your ticket buyers. With this invaluable tool you are now able to email all your attendees in one easy step for all dates or individual dates of your event.
  • Expanded ticket price options. The detailed pricing options allow you to further cater your pricing structure to fit your event's needs.
  • New integration with VetTix. You and your customers can now donate tickets to your event to Veterans! You can check out the article above for more details on this integration. To learn more about VetTix, visit: http://vettix.com/
  • Customized options for your event page. As an event producer you can now customize event URLs, different between "Selling Tickets" or "Registering Attendees," and adjust the placement of the ticket buying window.

We know that new features can be exciting, but they may also take some getting used to! Stay on the lookout for future pro-tips that will go further in-depth into some of these new tools. In the meantime, if you have any questions regarding the new features, please feel free to contact our Client Services department at (800) 838-3006 (Option 3 or 4) or Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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DIY Expand Audience

5 DIY tips for expanding your audience

Fundraising

In the world of advertising, promoting and marketing it can be hard for an independent band or promoter to see growth in their fan base. Fret not! Make use of these 5 DIY tips to expand your audience with ease.

1. Know, develop and focus on your product and story
Once you get past the “it’s-hard-to-describe-us” stage of your career, learning how to articulate who you are will help expand your audience. Every artist has a story and that’s what people really want to know. What makes you different than thousands of other bands? Or what makes you similar to them? Your story doesn’t have to be grand or shocking, it just has to be concise. It can be as simple as: “We are a classic rock cover band,” or as intriguing as: “We are a Norwegian-style metal band from Papua, New Guinea.” Be sure to include a relevant accomplishment in your story. Whether it is the release of a new record or the overcoming of an unusual obstacle. Any reason for an audience to come see your live show or listen to your music at their next available opportunity is a great piece to add.

2. Identify your goal
One of the biggest and most common obstacles for young and/or independent artists is not having clear and achievable goals. For instance, if you want to expand your tour circuit to Europe, pick one geographical location in Europe and start there. Then, research the area and test the waters with a radio campaign, reaching out to agents or artists in that region. Focus social media efforts there and even do a small “building” tour there. Be realistic. It's a fine balance between investing in expansion and maintaining the financial sustainability of your career.

3. Tell the world (or at least your target audience)
Once you have your story articulated, get it out there and let it start working for you. Make sure it is present in press releases, photos, interviews, social media posts, etc. It doesn’t need to be specifically explained, but should be at least implied. Try to keep things fresh and relevant to your story.

4. Leverage your relationships
When it comes to breaking the ice with bookers, press, radio or anyone else, look for ways to get there through paths that you've already established. Whether it is your Aunt Martha who knows a local bar owner, a DJ who has contacted you about your music or a band from that area, it can be effective to let your connections connect with their networks to initiate the first conversation.

5. Everything counts
Keep in mind it takes time for general results to show. Be sure to consider every spark that comes up, no matter how tedious or seemingly insignificant the lead. Most contacts, bookings or press interactions can lead to more, and while you don’t want to constantly bug a DJ to play your record, it is a good idea to keep a radio/press list for sending out new releases. If they don’t play or review every one you send them, don’t worry about it. Chances are they will at least see it and perhaps pick up the next one and give it a listen. You have to be there to be seen or heard.

Warning: Don’t wear out your welcome!

Everything mentioned above can only work if there is a receptive audience. If you feel like you're starting to sound like spam to those you reach out to, pull back. Make your efforts count the first time.

Looking for extra help booking a tour, recording an album, or submitting music for copyright, we've got an in-house music expert at your service! Email BillG@BrownPaperTickets.com for all inquiries and be sure to check out what he's up to, here!

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Success Story: from a stolen sea
By Graeme Thomas, UK Business Development

Fundraising

Recently, I caught up with Mark Burgoyne who runs from a stolen sea, a record label and events company based in Glasgow, Scotland, to learn how they got started, hear about their current events and everything in-between.

Started during the summer of 2009, from a stolen sea set-out with the intention to release the album: mirror / echo by theapplesofenergy, in a vinyl-only production. Soon, they found themselves running into difficulties in manufacturing the vinyl and decided to start promoting live events to fill the time. The album was eventually released in November of 2011, but because of this two year hiccup, they were able to concentrate on live events and developing a bespoke sound systems, differentiating themselves from the pack.

When I asked if he had any tips for other producers, Mark stressed that "if something is easy to do, it may be not worth doing. Always push yourself to try new things with your events. Put on music, film, art, [and] dance [events] that you feel no-one else is offering in your area. Putting on events for nothing other than commercial [or] monetary gain will not satisfy nearly as much as creating something completely unique."

With such a positive attitude towards challenges, I asked Mark what lessons they had learned the hard way. He replied, "To be honest almost everything you learn in the events industry is learned the hard way. If not then you aren't pushing yourself or your company enough. Simple things like ensuring you have a back-up if things don't turn out as planned on the night of an event (such as bands not turning up on time, soundchecks not running as smoothly as planned, etc.), are all thing that can really test your ability to cope." This is great advise to anyone staging a live event. You need to have a plan B and think about what could go wrong in order to have a solution ahead of time.

I was curious about a stolen sea's experience as a Brown Paper Tickets event producer. I was pleased to hear Mark say: "Our experience with Brown Paper Tickets has been one of continual satisfaction. They are always quick to respond to any queries we have and deal with everything immediately and with great professionalism." In their search for a main ticketing company, their list included: "[they must] offer a cheaper service [for the customer] than most if not all other ticket companies, they had to be environmentally aware, offer a ticketing method that did not necessarily require us to print tickets, and [they] had to be in it for more than monetary gain; Brown Paper Tickets met all these requirements and therefore became our main ticketing outlet." We are always happy to help check off those boxes.

Be sure to keep an eye on from a stolen sea as they have some exciting new projects coming up!

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Pro Tip: Variable Ticket Pricing


For intermediate and advanced producers

Over the last few weeks we've introduced some awesome new tools for our Brown Paper Tickets event producers. One of those features is variable ticket pricing! Many of you have asked to have this added and we heard you loud and clear.

What is a Variable Ticket?
A variable ticket allows the buyer to set a price of what they can pay to attend your event. In short, this is what many of you call "Pay-What-You-Can."

By adding this ticket type, you make your event more affordable to larger audiences that normally would not attend. At the same time, you open up doors to potential donors who feel that your events are worth more than the average ticket price.

A variable priced ticket can be added in the Dates and Prices section of the event creation or editing process under the heading "Add a Price to All Dates." Here you will see the category for the "Price Type" where you can choose "Variable Price."

By setting a specific price value in this area, you are setting the "minimum" payment. For example, if you set the price value at $10.00 and choose the variable price type, customers will be able to enter in any amount of $10.00 or more for their ticket purchase.

Note: Variable prices are different than one time donations to an organization in that any Variable Ticket Price includes admission to an event where donations do not.

Quick Reference to Price Types:
  • Fixed Price Type – You set specific prices.
  • Variable Price Type – Customers pay-what-they-can (includes admission).
  • Donation Sale Type – Charitable donation to an organization (does not include admission or a "ticket;" stipulations apply, call for more details).

If you'd like further information on how to set up variable ticket pricing or simple need additional support, please give us a call at: (800) 838-3006 (Option 4).

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Twitter 101

Twitter 101: How to use Twitter to promote events

Fundraising

The Internet is riddled with social media platforms that have changed how and why people engage with content. As you prepare for your event, Twitter can be an incredibly useful and affordable tool for event promotion. With purposeful planning, strategy, and commitment, you can build buzz for your outstanding event in no time! Here are some helpful tips to get you started.

Start early
The awesome thing about Twitter is once you Tweet about something, it is instantly captured by whomever is online at that moment. This allows you to talk about your event multiple times without annoying or spamming your followers or potential attendees. Social media management tools like Hootsuite or Tweetdeck allow you to schedule posts in advance. Utilizing these tools will allow you to design a solid Twitter promotion plan a month or more before your event. For a more detailed overview on how to use Hootsuite take a look at this article by Cosmic Doggerel.

Say the same thing, differently
While Twitter's structure allows for more repetition, you should always try to write variations of the same Tweet. Here is an example of a Tweet about an event: "#Seattle: Don't miss out on amazing #music from @GreatArtist1 June 7th, #FREE http://ow.ly/bnWhz." Compared to this variation: "Support your local #indie #music scene & listen to @GreatArtist1 6/7, #Seattle, free http://ow.ly/bnWhz." Notice the slight differences in wording and order. Your event is special and unique, so find ways to talk about it differently and draw new attention to it!

Give love to get love
The secret behind a truly special Twitter campaign is sharing! Virtual word-of-mouth is made easy with "retweets," "favorites," and "mentions." By tagging bands, organizations and venues involved or related with your group, you are opening the line of conversation to all of their fans, friends and customers. Promoting others on Twitter only helps your chance at getting exposed to friends of friends of friends! You inadvertently build a strong network of supporters while helping neighboring colleagues!

Hint: It's always good to retweet or support the projects of others in your area or industry while promoting yours. If you help them, they'll be more likely to help you.

Start a trend with hashtags
Twitter allows you to create any hashtag (# symbol before a word or phrase), to mark keywords or topics in a Tweet. If enough people engage with that hashtag you can get your Tweet trending in your area, the country or even the world! Short and intuitive hashtags generally get the job done. For example, #SXSW works great for the South By South West music festival. #SFFilmFestival is also good for any film festival in San Francisco. If you'd like to get your event trending in a particular way add your unique hashtag to all tweets going out about your event. i.e. "Huge comedy extravaganza with free booze & live music! #BoozeCom2012."

Hint: You can easily host giveaways and contests on Twitter by having people answer a question or tweet you with a specific hashtag. This is a great way to boost sales closer to the event while building buzz.

Don't forget to link to your event
You've hooked someone in with your awesomely crafted Tweet, now you can turn that interested party into a paying customer! Don't forget to post a link to your purchasing site to close the deal.

Hint: Social management tools like Hootsuite or Tweetdeck have link shorteners built into their interface. This will give you more room to talk about your event.

Want more detailed information on how to promote your events and manage your presence on Twitter? Check out our free resource guide for quick tips, examples and definitions here. Looking for additional help with your event promotion plan? Feel free to email us at: Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 (Option 5). We're here to help!

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Pro Tip: Contacting Ticket Buyers
For intermediate and advanced producers

As a Brown Paper Tickets event producer, we understand the desire to reach out to your attendees in preparation for your awesome events. Below is a breakdown of the many ways you can contact your ticket buyers from your Brown Paper Tickets account.

MailChimp
Our brand-new integration with MailChimp allows you to easily let your email list members and past ticket buyers know about your events! Each of your events has a MailChimp button under the "Promote!" tab. With an existing MailChimp account and list, click on the MailChimp logo and log into your MailChimp account. From there, check the box under "Add contact info from previous sales," and your previous ticket buyers that have released their contact information to you will receive a confirmation email to join your list.

Choose one of our two basic templates and go! After you click "Continue," your event information will be pulled into MailChimp's powerful suite of email campaign tools, and it is all ready for you to make it your own with custom colors and layouts.

Need help getting your MailChimp account set-up? We're available to help. Call our Event Promotions team at (800) 838-3006 (Option 5), and we can help walk you through the process.

Email Ticket Buyers
This tool is found when managing your event under the "Extras" page. This will allow you to send a message to all ticket buyers who have already purchased tickets for your event, and is intended to consist of "need to know" information about the event they plan on attending. For example, you may want to send out a reminder that customers should arrive 15 minutes before the event's starting time to claim their ticket.

Additionally, this tool can help you keep your buyers informed and prepared when unexpected issues arise at the last minute - a water pipe burst, a casting change, the event needs to be rescheduled - whatever may happen! Your customers will appreciate this attention, should these matters affect their ticket purchase.

Note: The "sender" of the email will appear as Brown Paper Tickets to your customers. If you require a reply, you should include the "reply to:" information in the body of the email.

Attendee Lists
While you may have seen the "Door List" version of your Attendee List (located in the Reports Menu), you may not be as familiar with the "Complete List." This list provides much more comprehensive information regarding your ticket buyers and their purchase including a phone number and email address. This list can be handy if you need to contact an individual buyer who, for example, may be running late for your event or needs to know specific information regarding his/her ticket.

This list is downloadable into an Excel format which you can then rearrange and organize to your own preference.

If you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to speak with our Client Services department.

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5 tips for hosting a low-cost community arts event

Fundraising

Situation: You've been asked to plan a community arts event. It needs to be hugely successful, but you have little-to-no budget. Impossible? We don't think so!

Solution: By networking with fellow members in the arts community, presenting your event to neighboring venues and businesses, and building a team of partners eager to support your cause, you are bound to succeed! Utilize these 5 simple tips to help get your community arts event, or any community event, off the ground (and running)!

1. Choose a location that will benefit from increased traffic flow. If it's a place that's near and dear to your heart, even better.

A venue with power, running water and restrooms is best as you won't need to rent the infrastructure separately. If you can establish why your event will be beneficial to the venue, it's possible that you can co-present with them and may not even need to rent the space. Never hurts to ask!

2. Pool your resources.
Clearly define your cause and share with others. You will be surprised at how easily you can pull together a team of local volunteers who are willing to help in the planning process. This may be one other person, or several people who have different areas of interest and skill sets. Establish a common vision of what the event will be so that everyone is on the same page.

Our Maker Doer, Tamara Clammer, recently planned an event at Freighthouse Square in Tacoma, Washington. Their committee consisted of Freighthouse Square's property manager, a talented artist and coordinator who was formerly part of a local co-op, and Tamara. They pooled all of their talent and networks to flawlessly pull off a free community arts event, put on by the community for the community. Additionally, a group of local authors joined, providing additional traffic to the event while at the same time giving the authors an opportunity to share excerpts from their books and network.

3. Schedule a range of activities and entertainment suitable for all ages.
A powerful community arts event has the ability to appeal to a wide range of people. This is important to keep in mind as you book and schedule the entertainment. When you provide a diverse range of options for all ages, you will attract larger audiences.

Tamara posted a Call for Artists on Craigslist, asking if anyone would like to participate in a free community arts event with an interactive, hands-on theme. Everyone who responded was invited to a walk-through to look at the space and determine what they would like to do. As a result, her event activities included Tarot reading, magic, comedy, roller derby, games, painting, LEGOs, and more!

Hint: Setting-up areas at your event for people to sit and relax is always a great way to give people time to rest before checking out all of your many activities. This also helps people to stick around a little longer!

4. Come up with creative solutions that don't cost money.
Investigate your venue space and brainstorm ideas for fun ways to engage with it. You will be surprised at how creative you can get!

At the Freighthouse Square event, the banquet room had a black and white checkered dance floor. Tamara transformed that space into a GIANT game of checkers re-purposing empty red and black LEGO bins as the checker pieces (generously donated from the LEGO guy downstairs). It worked perfectly!

5. Invite EVERYONE!
Once you've finalized the venue, date and time of your event, list it!

Brown Paper Tickets is a great resource as you are able to post free events or ticketed events, all for free! Tell all of your friends, family, coffee house owners, local shops, and restaurants you can find about your event. Ask your friends to tell their friends and their family. Your Brown Paper Tickets event page easily links to your Facebook and Twitter accounts; another great way to promote. Lastly, get your event listed in a local paper. To do this, decide why your event is amazing and why local media should know about it, then reach out to them. Getting an event listing is great, but if you can get them to write an article, even better. Sell them!

Good luck pulling off your community arts event and remember, have fun!

If you'd like extra promotional help or ideas for your events, feel free to email us at: Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 (Option 5). We're always here to help!

To read more about the Freighthouse Square event Tamara produced, read these successfully placed event articles:

If you'd like to reach out to Tamara to find out how she made her event so successful or help with putting on your own, email: Tamara@BrownPaperTickets.com.

Want more help and advice on pulling off successful events? Subscribe to our twice-a-month Event Success newsletter!

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BPT Relaunches with MailChimp and Gobs of Tools!

New website!

Late Spring is the perfect time for new features from Brown Paper Tickets! Obviously the new look and feel is pretty fun, but this update is more than skin deep. The new features come in two flavors: event producers and ticket buyers. They are a great mix of practical and exciting. Here's a quick list.

Event producers have asked for even more power and flexibility. Here are some changes:

  • Variable "pay-what-you-can" pricing - set minimums, multiples, or leave it up to your audience
  • Free donation collection tool - that's not a typo, we don't collect a fee on your donations
  • Advanced MailChimp integration - merge lists and build campaigns, track opens, event page visits and even purchases
  • Ticket Widget - easily add a point of sale to your website or a partner site with some ready-made Javascript

For ticket buyers we've focused on usability and a better discovery process:

  • Faster checkout process - fewer steps, fewer screens, fewer clicks, better experience
  • Easier to read confirmation page - the well informed ticket buyer makes everyone happier
  • Better event searching and discovery - faster, smarter, and more flexible searching

We hope you don't mind if we make this a regular thing. We're just a few weeks away from rolling out even more improvements to our event producer tools, including easier event posting and management, improved reporting, and simpler navigation. More proof that your emails are read and your calls are appreciated!

If you have any questions or suggestions about our new tools and services, just want a tour, or need an event tech for any reason, feel free to contact us 24/7 at (800) 838-3006 in the US and Canada or on 0800-411-8881 in the UK, or by email at Support@BrownPaperTickets.com. We'd love to hear your feedback and show you how our improvements can help you!

We hope that these changes further assist you in making your events huge successes. Take a look at the new site and let us know what you think!

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Pro Tip: Ticket Delivery Options Series - Mobile Tickets
For intermediate and advanced producers

There are four different ways you can choose to deliver tickets with Brown Paper Tickets. You select the delivery options available to your ticket buyers when you set-up your event. So far, we have reviewed the methods for Will Call, Physical, and Print-At-Home Tickets. We will now discuss the delivery option for Mobile Tickets.

Mobile
During the order process, ticket buyers may have the option to access their own tickets from their mobile phones to present on the day of the event.

Why Choose Mobile?

  • Mobile tickets allow customers to conveniently present proof of purchase via their mobile device.
  • The Brown Paper Tickets mobile scanner app can be used to verify the validity of mobile tickets, or you may compare the buyer's name to your "Will Call" list.
  • Customers can transfer tickets securely to a friend on their mobile device using our patent pending Transfer-to-a-Friend™ tool.
  • There is never an additional shipping fee to you or your ticket buyers.
  • This is the paperless way to go when using Brown Paper Tickets.

At the box office:

  • Use the free Brown Paper Tickets mobile scanner ticket app to scan mobile tickets on the day of your event.
  • You can cross reference your Will Call list under Mobile tickets if you do not have a scanner.
  • Using the Brown Paper Tickets phone scanner application will insure you that no other copies of the same barcode will be used to gain access into your event. Only one mobile ticket will be allowed entry.

If you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to speak with our Client Services department.

At anytime you can revisit the different methods for ticket delivery at the links below:

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Music from the ground up

Breaking in: How to build your music career from the ground up

Fundraising

It takes a village to make an artist. This message sounded again and again at a discussion with swoon-worthy industry experts at SXSW. There is no magic elevator to the top. Today's musicians build their careers with an entire community pitching-in. Read what the experts say about building your music career and start building your village today.

Don't expect success to happen over night. As Dez Dickerson of Pavilion Entertainment said, "Musicians think that they'll go from obscurity to fame in one fell swoop. More like boxing. Rather than one big Mike Tyson punch, it's more like the knock in the 12th round." He added, "You can't just put your music 'out there'. You have to build awareness and differentiate."

Even once you get your foot in the door, your work is not done. Jonathan Daniel of Crush Music Media Management shared this with us, "When you get into the business, you think you'll get a record deal and then be huge. After four record deals, we realized that wasn't the case. You have to work and preserve and hone your craft. The record deal cannot be the goal."

Musicians expecting to simply sit back and expect the label or agent to do everything for them are in for a shock. Daniel said once you get a deal, "It's roll up your sleeves and do it yourself time. Build your village—radio, TV, video and advertisers. Stay humble and you'll have much better success. Major labels can be incredibly valuable, but they can't be your only tool. It's your job to get it started."

Sara Baer of 4Fini Sponsorship & Marketing, which organizes the Warped Tour, tells us that even the big names hustle during the shows. "On down time, smart bands work the merchandise booth and find non-profits to partner with."

Jenna Lomonaco of Glassnote Records (known for breaking Mumford and Sons), wraps up the discussion with this, "There's a lot of pieces to an artist breaking in. Every piece of what you're doing will make change. You need to tie everything together—interviews, television, performance, tours, blogs, digital sales and social media. Really reach out to the bloggers and let them know what's happening and what's going on. You need to build up all of the pieces. It's vital that artists develop relationships with their audience. It's the weird stuff that builds the loyalty."

Building a career in music is a worthy and challenging goal. We support your efforts and applaud your awesome courage! We hope to be there for you ever step of the way.

Need help getting started? We've got a whole department dedicated to assisting you with Event Promotions. Call (800) 838-3006 (Option 5) or email Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com for free personalized support today! We'd love to help.

Want more help and advice on pulling off successful events? Subscribe to our twice-a-month Event Success newsletter!

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Pro Tip: Ticket Delivery Options Series - Print-At-Home Tickets
For intermediate and advanced producers

There are four different ways you can choose to deliver tickets with Brown Paper Tickets. You select the delivery options available to your ticket buyers when you set-up your event. We'll review these different methods in four installments. So far, we've reviewed Will Call and Physical Tickets. We will now discuss the delivery option for Print-At-Home Tickets.

Print-At-Home
During the order process, ticket buyers may have the option to print their own tickets using their plain paper printer.

Why Choose Print-At-Home?

  • Customers have the convenience of printing out their ticket at home at any time after purchase.

  • You can use a ticket scanner to verify the validity of Print-At-Home tickets or you can compare the ticket buyer's name to your "Will-Call" list. To view more information about our mobile scanner app, click here.
  • There is never an additional shipping fee to you or your ticket buyers for Print-At-Home tickets.

At the box office:

  • The printed list of your attendees will show all the patrons that purchased tickets for your event and chose the "Print at Home" option. This list will be in alphabetical order.
  • Using the Brown Paper Tickets mobile scanner app will insure that no other copies of the same barcode will be used to gain access to your event. Only one Print-At-Home ticket per person will be allowed entry.

If you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to speak with our Client Services department.

In the final installment of this series, we will review the ticket delivery method for mobile tickets to your events.

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Sell more tickets on Twitter: Five ways to turn followers into ticket buyers

You know you can use social media to sell tickets online. If only you knew how... It's easy! Here are five simple things you can do to turn your Twitter followers into ticket buyers.

1. Say exactly what you want.
Posting information about your events on your Twitter feed is an excellent start. Increase the number of conversations by saying exactly what you want people to do. For example, instead of simply posting "Excellent blues show tonight at the Red Door!", try "Buy your tickets now to tonight's excellent blues show at the Red Door!". (Of course, remember to include the link!) This makes it easy for your followers to know that you aren't simply posting nice-to-know information, but are asking for action.

2. Don't always talk about yourself.
Have you ever been on date with someone that talked about themselves the whole time? You know how easy it is to tune them out and how unlikely it is that you will ever spend time with them again. It's the same on social media. If you are only talking about your events, people are going to get sick of you and stop paying attention. We like to follow a loose three to one rule. For every single self-serving post, we post at least three more times about things that have nothing to do with us but that our followers may be interested in. These other posts can be links to industry articles, funny pictures, shout-outs to people we admire and so on. Need help thinking of more things to post? Call Sarah in Event Promotions at (800) 838-3006 option 5. She's a whizz at helping people come up with interesting content. (For free!)

3. Link! Link! Link!
Buying tickets to your event should be effortless. Don't make your interested followers have to hunt around or search for your event. Every time you mention your event, include a link where people can buy tickets. Don't just link to the Brown Paper Tickets home page, but directly to your event page.

4. Give tickets away.
Buzz is beautiful. The more people talking about your event, the higher the demand for your tickets. You can get people talking by offering a couple pairs of tickets as giveaways on your Twitter feed. Make it simple. For example, ask people to RT (retweet) your event link and say why they want to go. Then choose the winner from the RTs. By sacrificing just a couple pairs of tickets, you can get more people talking about your event to their friends and followers, reach a bigger audience and fill even more seats. Plus, free giveaways train your followers to watch your feed closely. No one wants to miss a freebie!

5. Use tools to make your life easier.
Perhaps you don't have eight hours a day to sit and play on social media? Shocking! No worries. There are tools you can use to make your life easier. Online tools such as HootSuite and TweetDeck allow you to schedule out posts in advance. This means you can spend 15 minutes in the morning writing all your tweets for the day, then be done with it. You can also use these tools to quickly see who's talking to and about you and respond easily.

Hear something helpful? Click here to tweet this article and share with your followers.

Want one-on-one guidance to help you sell more tickets on social media?
Call our Event Promotions department at (800) 838-2006 (option 5). We can go over your event specifically and help you generate more ideas for early ticket sales.

Need help getting your Twitter feed to appear on your Brown Paper Tickets event?
Please call our Client Services department at (800) 838-3006 (option 3). Our team is standing by 24/7 to help with all your technical and account questions.



Success Story: Woosh Entertainments

By Graeme Thomas, UK Business Development

Woosh

I recently spoke with Keith Easton, Director and Event Manager of Woosh Entertainments Limited. Keith started Woosh Entertainments back in 1990 with his brother Graeme as a mobile disco business. They have seen it go from strength to strength and 2012 looks to be a very exciting year for them.

Keith tells me they started in Schools and Youth club discos and “went on to not only provide discos, but also music and announcements at Open Days, fundraising events, BBQs, fashion shows and live music events.” This led to DJ nights at some of Edinburgh's clubs and from there they “continued to diversify and develop to become Woosh Entertainments Limited, providing entertainment in terms of comparing, commenting, announcing and DJing at a variety of sporting events across the UK and in Europe.”

The business was developed further in 2010 Keith explains that, “on leaving my previous job as Venue Manager at Heriot-Watt University Students Association, I chose to develop Woosh Entertainments and we now work within the music industry by organizing gigs and helping to develop bands by providing music PR, band management and merchandising services.”

One of their many strings is running live gigs in Edinburgh and they have put on many great bands, including Aerials Up, The Deadly Winters, The Hussy's, Alan R Davison, and Six Storeys High.

It's not simply indoor events that Woosh Entertainments do. This event manager appears to do everything with his varied events includingannouncing and DJing for Scottish Football Association and Scottish Football League at Hampden Park, Scottish Rugby Union and Edinburgh Rugby at Murrayfield, World Snooker, GB and Scottish Basketball, GB Beach Volleyball, Loch Ness Marathon, The City of Edinburgh Council and The Rat Race Adventure Events."

"The Rat Race?" I queried. “Yes, some of the challenges that Rat Race Events put on are amazing”, Keith explains, “from asking participants to abseil down a football stadium to running through Sherwood Forest dressed as characters from Robin Hood! Let’s just say there’s never a dull moment.”

That's what we like to hear. Looking at the future I ask what's next for Woosh Entertainments.

“We are currently working on plans to open a rehearsal room and creative facility which can also be used for recording and photography. An exciting event we are looking forward to managing is the album release gig for Alan R Davison. Alan has put debut solo album, ‘The White Eagle Lounge,’ into action with a super-group of players involved in the recording including over 30 of Alan’s most trusted and respected musical friends. We’ve been hugely supportive of the project and look forward to working with Alan on the launch event.” I have to say I have heard some of the songs and it is going to be a great album. The 30 musical friends include Nathan Connolly and Tom Simpson from Snow Patrol, which is nice company to keep!

Quote

When asking what their experience has been like using Brown Paper Tickets, it was pleasing to hear that it has been a positive one. “Graeme Thomas has been very helpful in guiding us through the website and the tools. The level of support has been great and the added PR through Brown Paper Tickets re-tweeting and using Facebook has helped grow the profile of our events. It’s great to work with a company who sees the bigger picture.”

Referring to other producers, Keith says, “I’m always looking for new and innovative marketing ideas for events, so it would be good to hear them.” His producer tips are to “Delegate. If you have a team of people, use them. Also, and I know people think it’s dull, but it is important to bear in mind health and safety for acts, the audience, volunteers and visitors when you are deciding on a venue and planning the layout of the event. It is always useful to fill in a Risk Assessment Form as this shows good practice and attention to detail." This is great advice as it's true that in putting on an event there is hard work and responsibility, and this should not be overlooked. Keith is also keen to warn producers “don’t take volunteers for granted.”

As we head into 2012, I ask what the future holds. “2012 is going to be an important year. My brother has already been involved with one of the Olympics test events held in London in 2011 when he was the MC at beach volleyball. The bands we are working with, The Deadly Winters and Alan R Davison, will both have new albums to promote, so that’s always an exciting process to be part of. Also our plans to open a rehearsal and creative facility are taking up a lot of our time.”

When put on the spot and asked aside from one of his music gigs what should someone do when they come to Edinburgh, Keith said, “They should go for an excellent pint of Stewart’s 80/- in The Diggers.” Well, I'll drink to that.

Visit Woosh Entertainment's Website: http://www.woosh.tv/

On Twitter: @wooshevents



Facebook Ads

How to use Facebook Ads to target your audience

Fundraising

You're organizing an event that is special and unique. How do you find ticket buyers that are just as passionate about this project as you are? An affordable and easy option for strategic event promotion is Facebook Ads. With over 500 million active users, Facebook is a hub of potential customers cleanly labeled by age, location, and interests. By targeting your audience online, you could fill the house weeks before your event.

Here are a few things you may find useful when setting up your advertising campaign.

Keywords are always key
The listed interests, likes and hobbies of each Facebook user make it easy for you to find people who will be drawn to your event. By associating your ad with industry-specific keywords, you are actively extending your targeted reach. For example, a cabaret variety show might target keywords such as burlesque, circus, or magic. Even better, Facebook allows you to add as many words or “tags” as you want.

Location matters
Like keywords, Facebook allows you to attach your advertisement to the profiles of users living in a particular region. Someone might fall in love with your event, but lives 1000 miles away. Ads that reach people who live far away won't help you sell tickets. When potential patrons are part of your local community, they're more likely to come to your events.

Engaging graphics are a win
As people scroll through their timelines or browse friends' profiles, your content becomes secondary information. If they see a cool or fun graphic they will be more likely to read and click on your ad. Show posters make great visuals, but sometimes don't look good in small scale. Try to find visuals that are clear and compelling even when viewed at a smaller size. Portraits and simple graphics are good for this.

Direct traffic back to your ticketing site
People are hooked by your keywords and love your graphic! Make it easy for potential patrons to secure spots to your event by linking your ads directly to where they may purchase tickets online.

If you'd like to get started on your Facebook Ad campaign today, visit: https://www.facebook.com/ads/create. For information on how to set up your campaign, check out Capito's visual walk through of Facebook Ads.

Have any questions regarding Facebook Ads and targeting your audience? Want someone to bounce ideas off of? We've got a whole department dedicated to assisting you with Event Promotions. Call (800) 383-3006 (option 5) or email Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com. Our Event Promotions team has years of experience helping event organizers pull off successful events. Completely free to you, we're here to talk through your specific event challenges and come up with wickedly-good plans. We love to help! Give us a call today.

Want more help and advice on pulling off successful events? Subscribe to our twice-a-month Event Success newsletter!

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Pro Tip: Ticket Delivery Options Series - Physical Tickets
For beginner, intermediate and advanced producers

There are 4 different ways you can choose to deliver tickets with Brown Paper Tickets. You select the delivery options available to your ticket buyers when you set up your event. We'll review these different methods in four installments. Last time we reviewed Will Call. Today, we'll look at the delivery option for Physical Tickets.

Physical Tickets
During the order process, ticket buyers may choose to have their tickets printed by Brown Paper Tickets and shipped to them directly.

Why Choose Physical Tickets?

  • There is no additional cost to you in North America, Europe, or the UK. (Ticket buyers must pay the actual shipping cost for all other locations)
  • USPS 1st Class Shipping is free for ticket buyers. (They do have the option to pay for expedited shipping)
  • Ticket buyers feel more secure having a ticket to bring with them as proof of purchase, plus they get to keep a memento of the event!
  • You can customize the wording on your ticket layouts to ensure that your customers have the exact information that they need.
  • Customers can get into the event a lot faster because they have their tickets in hand.

At the box office:

  • If a customer leaves their tickets at home, you will have their name on your attendee list under the Physical Tickets section.
  • Tickets can also be scanned with our free mobile app in case they are lost or stolen.

If you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to speak with our Client Services department.

In the next installment, we will review the ticket delivery method for print-at-home tickets to your events.

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Music and Philanthropy

Powerful combination: How to mix music and philanthropy

Fundraising

You can make a positive impact on the world through your events. We were lucky enough at SXSW to ask three music industry insiders how emerging musicians can create change. Their insights apply not only to bands and solo artists growing their careers, but to all of us that hold or organize events. You have a stage. Here's how to use it for good:

Size doesn't matter.
Of your audience, that is. As long as you have one fan, you have one person you can impact. Mike Martinovich, manager for My Morning Jacket and Flight of the Concords had this to say, "It doesn't matter if you're playing pubs, or an arena, you can make a difference. Collect emails. Collect a donation at the door. Tweet. The earlier musicians do it, the sooner it becomes institutionalized within themselves and their fans."

Erin Potts, Executive Director at Air Traffic Control Education Fund agreed. "Musicians have historically been important allies in social justice... music helps people feel personally connected to issues. Musicians have incredible reach. Even small, beginning artists have email or social media lists larger than most non-profits."

Respect your authority!
As an entertainer, you hold the great ability to reach and influence others on a very personal level. Andy Bernstein of HeadCount (which promotes such established groups as Pearl Jam, Phish, Death Cab for Cutie, and Dave Matthew's Band) explains, "Social currency is everything. Musicians have the power to bring issues to the forefront with their social currency."

Tip: You can watch Andy tell exactly how he helps artists make an impact in this video.

Follow up after the show.
Using your stage to speak about issues that matter to you is a great starting point. Take it to the next level by continuing the conversation after the show.

Arcade Fire's Marika Anthony-Shaw told us about her band's efforts to raise awareness about issues plaguing Haiti beyond mentions at the concerts. "We were wondering how we could start a conversation with our fans," she said. "So we had sign-up sheets at shows and we trained volunteers at all our shows in social justice and human rights. The ripple effect has been incredible since starting that conversation five years ago. We now have 10,000 volunteers who start those conversations. Now we hear back from fans who run marathons and have fundraisers at schools to donate to Haiti. It's become something beyond fan and band that we’re all connected to."

Marika suggested that musicians choose something easy and small that they can keep doing. Consistency grows your impact. Make the decision as a group on what to support, knowing this is something you may never stop doing.

Get started now!
Here's a list of things you can do RIGHT NOW to start making an impact:

  • Add a dollar per ticket to donate directly to a cause you care about.
  • Talk about your cause from the stage.
  • Set out a clipboard at events to collect the emails of those interested in your cause. (Remember to follow up after the show)
  • Choose something easy and small that you can keep doing. Make the decision as a group, something you do and never stop doing.
  • Mention your cause on your website, Facebook and Twitter.
  • While touring or staying in your hometown, invite local charity groups to your show. Plant seeds. Give them tickets. Develop relationships.
  • Volunteer once a week, or once a month, as a group. Not only will fans seeing you doing good in the community, but the connections you make might surprise you. You may end up meeting your next tour manager.
  • During one song, ask the audience to throw paper money at you as a donation to your cause.

Want more ideas on how to use your events as a platform for positive change? Call our Event Promotions department at
(800) 838-3006 (Option 5)
or email your questions to Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com. Completely free to you, we're here to talk through your specific event challenges and come up with wickedly-good plans. We love to help! Give us a call today.

Want more help and advice on pulling off successful events? Subscribe to our twice-a-month Event Success newsletter!

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52 Weeks of Good Campaign

Do Good

Our Do Good Doer, Kelly Allen, has been running a campaign for the last few months to encourage us to make a difference with the little things we do, everyday.

Every Monday, Kelly posts an article with a new way we can make a positive impact on our communities by examining our habits, our interactions, and our daily behavior. The posts range from how to reuse what you have, to turning someone's day around. Throughout the week she also shares inspiring stories, pictures, positive thoughts, and other ways you can make a difference. Whether we see it or not, we all have the power to make a positive change in the world.

Now it is your turn. Sign up to join the 52 Weeks of Good Campaign and check out her blog for more ideas on making the world a better place.

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Pro Tip: Ticket Delivery Options Series - Will Call
For beginner, intermediate and advanced producers

There are 4 different ways you can choose to deliver tickets with Brown Paper Tickets. You select the delivery options available to your ticket buyers when you set up your event. We'll review these different methods in four installments. First, let's start with Will Call.

Will Call Tickets
During the order process, ticket buyers may choose to have their name added to a "Will Call" list. This list can be downloaded or printed by you and used to verify attendees at the door of your event.

Why Choose Will Call?

  • This option allows for the greatest flexibility for your ticket buyers. They do not need to keep track of lost, stolen, or undelivered physical tickets. They can simply show-up at the event worry-free!
  • You can access the attendee list for Will Call at any time through your producer account.
  • Our staff can easily process refunds and make date exchanges until the sales for your event have ended (certain restrictions do apply, i.e. if you have set a strict refund policy).
  • A comprehensive “Final Sales List” is emailed to you after your online sales period has ended.
  • No shipping fees for you or your ticket buyers.

At the box office:

  • Print a list of your attendees. This will show your door staff all the patrons that purchased tickets for your event, marked as Will Call ticket buyers. The list will be in alphabetical order.
  • We recommend that you check the IDs of attendees to verify that the person's name is on the list.

Tip: When a name cannot be found, try asking who purchased the tickets. Often times, the purchaser of the tickets forgets to add the name of the person who is actually attending the show.

If you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to speak with our Client Services department.

In the next installment, we will review the ticket delivery method for physical tickets to your events.

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Fundraising
10 ways to get more cash out of your fundraising events
With a special message from Kristine Levine, comedienne of Portlandia fame!

Fundraising

For all the time and effort poured into your fundraising events, you'd like to raise the most cash possible. Transforming a meh fundraising event into a cash cow can be simple. Really. Here are ten of the best ideas we've seen for getting more out of your fundraising events.

Ten ways to get more out of your fundraising event:

  1. Set a goal. Having something to shoot for will help you raise more, even if you keep it private.
  2. Collect extra funds with ticket purchases. Bundle tickets with donations at different price levels. Offer VIP or priority seating at a higher price.
  3. Communicate measurable outcomes. For example: "A gift of $500 provides drinking water for 50 families for a year"
  4. Collect the email addresses of all RSVPs. Email attendees after the event with your thanks, as well as a link to donate or become a higher level supporter.
  5. Hire a photographer (or get a volunteer) to take portraits of attendees at the event and give printed copies in exchange for a small donation. Polaroids work well here.
  6. Have volunteers walk around your event selling raffle tickets for donated items.
  7. Small businesses find in-kind donations easier than cash. Ask for donations for the food, supplies and services needed to pull off your event.
  8. Project the names of people who donate more than a desired amount on a wall at your event to recognize their gift.
  9. Don't forget your volunteers! Email pre-written posts about the event that your volunteers can copy and paste on their Facebook or Twitter accounts. Include a link to a donation page.
  10. Humanize the cause. If appropriate and possible, include those that directly benefit from your fundraising efforts at your event as special guests.

Planning a fundraising event? You're in good company. We spoke with comedienne Kristine Levine backstage at her comedy show at SXSW. She shared with us how she puts on charity events to benefit comedians with cancer. Kristine uses Brown Paper Tickets to ticket her charity events and track the money and thinks you should too! Watch Kristine explain how she puts on charity events:

Want more ideas on how to get the most out your specific fundraising event? Call our Event Promotions department at (800) 838-3006 (Option 5) or email your questions to Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com. Our Event Promotions team has years of experience helping event organizers pull off successful events. Completely free to you, we're here to talk through your specific event challenges and come up with wickedly-good plans. We love to help! Give us a call today.

Want more help and advice on pulling off successful events? Subscribe to our twice-a-month Event Success newsletter!

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Success Story: Festival du Bois
By Caroline Planque, French Outreach


Johanne Dumas from Festival du Bois shares tips on honing your niche market

Tucked in the francophone community of Maillardville in Coquitlam, BC, the Festival du Bois celebrated its 23rd edition last month. Rain or shine, the event is always scheduled in March. This is to coincide with the sugar season (temps des sucres) in Quebec when Quebecers head to their sugar shacks to start collecting and preparing their delicious maple syrup, as well as prepare traditional meals and throw kitchen parties.

Festival du Bois

Johanne Dumas, a native of Quebec, seeks to maintain this tradition with Festival du Bois. The festival encompasses all age groups through a gamut of activities and festivities for grown-ups and children. Entire families come to dance to the sounds of traditional Quebecois and world music. Some head straight for a dish of Poutine (fries with gravy and cheese curds) or for a taste of maple taffy. Others practice wood sawing. The whole community joins together during two days of joie-de-vivre, a formula that has proven its success through the years!

Listen to Johanne as she shares her event promotion tips.

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Pro Tip: Payment Processing Method
Series - Brown Paper Tickets Processor / Custom Merchant Account

For intermediate and advanced producers

We've been discussing the different credit card processing methods that work with Brown Paper Tickets. Here is the final part of the 3-part payment processing series, focusing on the Brown Paper Tickets Credit Processor and your Custom Merchant Account.

The Financial Settings area of your Brown Paper Tickets account is found under the "Account" menu. Here, you may choose from several payment options (detailed below) to facilitate the processing of your ticket revenue to fit your unique needs. Please note that the currency in which you wish to collect funds in may limit the options available. US Dollar, Canadian Dollar, Pound Sterling, and Euro are all full service currencies.

Brown Paper Tickets Processor

Benefits:

  • Using Brown Paper Tickets' credit card processor is the easiest way to collect money for your ticket sales.
  • The entire payment process is managed by the Brown Paper Tickets' system.
  • Service fees of $0.99 plus 3.5% of the ticket face value still apply either to you or the ticket buyer, but there are no additional fees for using Brown Paper Tickets' credit card processor.
  • You are able to process all ticket types, easily process refunds and have full Call Center support for your customers.

Considerations:

  • Payment for the face value of your ticket sales is sent to you within 10 days after the end of your event. This does not mean that your check is guaranteed to be delivered within this time period, although most checks do arrive prior to ten business days after the event. Checks will be sent via USPS 1st Class unless you contact client services at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to request expedited shipping (shipping charges will apply).

Custom Merchant Account

Benefits:

  • By using your own credit card processor to process credit card ticket purchases, you can receive funds from your ticket sales directly into your own merchant account prior to your event date.
  • We currently integrate with Authorize.net™, PayPal™ Website Payments Pro, USAePay, Payment Processing Inc., and OmniPlatform. If your merchant account uses one of these gateways, you can use this method to begin selling tickets immediately.
  • You are able to process all ticket types, easily process refunds and have full Call Center support for your customers.

Considerations:

  • There are fees associated with utilizing a merchant account of your own. Fees vary by company and you are responsible for the payment of all those fees.
  • Ticket buyers will be charged $0.99 plus 3.5% of the ticket face value. You will then be invoiced after your event for $0.99 plus 1% of the face value of each ticket sold. You will keep the remaining ticket fees to assist in covering your credit card processing costs.

You can feel free to review our first or second part of the payment processing series and if you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 4) to speak with Client Services.

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Film Festival Success

Film Festival Insights: 5 ways to ensure the success of your film festival

Many elements must come together to make a film festival a success, from selecting the right films, to marketing to actual day-of-festival organization. Caroline Planque, a member of our outreach team, recently sat down with Ian Merkel, the director, film curator and fundraising manager of the Vancouver South African Film Festival. Ian shared his valuable insights into what organizers may do to ensure the success of their festivals. His excellent advice applies not only to film festivals, but could be used by event organizers of all types.

Here are Ian's insights to film festival success:

Add Galas and complimentary events to your film festival.
Every festival needs to have events planned around the films. The films on their own are not enough. You need to think about doing galas, or bringing directors in, or doing Skype interviews.

Target each film to a different type of market.
Every film has its own type of audience. Yet the festival in itself has an audience you can target as well. Some of your films may be documentaries with causes. You can partner with those cause leaders to bring more attention to your festival.

Get sponsors for the galas to each film.
When you bring people in to sponsor, the word gets out because they're telling their friends about it. You hit a larger audience when you partner with sponsors.

Film festivals need a lot of marketing, a lot of talk, a lot of promotion. You have to be in all types of media today. You have to be on twitter, you have to be on Facebook. You also need to work to get TV, radio, newspapers, and magazines talking about your festival.

Use themes to build interest in your films. Can you look at your best films and build up a theme around them? Festivals are special, it's not just like going to the theater. Also, it's good to promote your film festival with other festivals and collaborate with them as community partners.

Want more help organizing and promoting your film festival? Give our Event Promotions team a call at 800-838-3006 (option 5) or email promo@brownpapertickets.com. Totally free to you, our promotions team is standing by to hear your challenges and work to come up with smart, actionable marketing solutions.

About the Vancouver South African Film Festival:
The second edition of the festival will take place April 20-22, 2012 at the Denman Cinemas in Vancouver, Canada. All proceeds will be donated to the non-profit Education without Borders to support its educational development work in South Africa. The screenings will focus on both documentaries and feature films that reflect the complex reality of the South African society, making the scope of the festival unique and unprecedented. Attend or learn more about the festival here: http://vsaff.org/

Want more help and advice on pulling off successful events? Subscribe to our twice-a-month Event Success newsletter!

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Pro Tip: Payment Processing Method
Series - Google Checkout / Amazon Payment

For intermediate and advanced producers

We've been discussing the different credit card processing methods that work with Brown Paper Tickets. Here is part 2 of 3 in this series, focusing on Google Checkout and Amazon Payments.

The Financial Settings area of your Brown Paper Tickets account is found under the "Account" menu. Here, you may choose from several payment options (detailed below) to facilitate the processing of your ticket revenue to fit your unique needs. Please note that the currency in which you wish to collect funds in may limit the options available. US Dollar, Canadian Dollar, Pound Sterling, and Euro are all full service currencies.

Google Checkout

Benefits:

  • By using your Google Checkout account to process credit card ticket purchases, you can receive funds from your ticket sales directly into your own designated bank account prior to your event date.
  • You may use your existing Google Checkout account to sell tickets. Your customers will be able to place ticket orders using their own Google Account if their account has a working credit card on file.

Considerations:

  • There are fees associated with utilizing Google Checkout. These fees vary, and you are responsible for the payment of all those fees.
  • This option is not available for phone orders, at walk-up locations or through mobile apps. Purchases can only be made online.
  • Refunding of monies for orders must be handled directly by the producer. Client Services will need to be notified of any refunds so that the ticket cancellation portion can be handled.
  • Ticket buyers will be charged $0.99 plus 3.5% of the ticket face value. You will then be invoiced by Brown Paper Tickets after your event for $0.99 plus 1% of the face value for each ticket sold. You will keep the remaining ticket fees to help offset your credit card processing costs.

Amazon Payments

Benefits:

  • By using your Amazon Payments account to process credit card ticket purchases, you can receive funds from your ticket sales directly into your own designated bank account.
  • You may use your existing Amazon Payments account to sell tickets. Amazon Payments allows your ticket buyers to purchase tickets with the same billing information or PayPhrase that they use when making purchases on Amazon.com.

Considerations:

  • There are fees associated with utilizing Amazon Payments. These fees vary, and you are responsible for the payment of all those fees.
  • This option is not available for phone orders, at walk-up locations or through mobile apps. Purchases can only be made online.
  • Refunding of monies for orders must be handled directly by the producer. Client Services will need to be notified of any refunds so that the ticket cancellation portion can be handled.
  • Ticket buyers will be charged $0.99 and 3.5% of ticket face value. Brown Paper Tickets will automatically receive $0.99 plus 1% of the face value of each ticket sold. You will keep the remaining ticket fees to help offset your credit card processing costs.

After filling out your Financial Settings, make sure you have selected matching "payment details" on the event itself. Check your event details by visiting "Events"> "Manage"> "Edit." Scroll down to section #5 (“Payment Details”) to review the payment options you have selected for ticket buyers to this event.

In the next Event Success, we'll review using Brown Paper Tickets' credit card processor, or your own custom merchant account.

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Building Community

Building community with events

We had the privilege of sitting down with Dave Olson, VP of Community at HootSuite, at SXSW this week. Listen as he talks about building community with events online and through social media.

Want more help and advice on pulling off successful events? Subscribe to our twice-a-month Event Success newsletter!

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Brown Paper Tickets hosted events at SXSW

This week we're running with the mad crowds at SXSW. If you happen to be in Austin, come say hello! You can meet our Founder, William Scott Jordan, by dropping by our booth at the tradeshow. (Booth #640). We're also giving away some of our highly-coveted button packs.

Button Pack

If music is your thing, come to our music showcase on Wednesday at Easy Tiger, hosted by our Music Doer Billy. Love comedy? Our Comedy Doer Julie has stacked a righteous line-up for our comedy showcase Wednesday night at Esther Follies. On the ground, catch our Radio Doer Sabrina and ask for an invite to one of our private brunches at the Brown Paper Tickets Condo. We'd love to see you there!


SXSW Fair Trade Music Showcase

Wednesday 3/15, 12-5:30pm
@ Easy Tiger Bake Shop
709 6th Street Austin, TX


Featuring: Bruce James Soultet, LZ Love Band, Nick Flanagan, Graham Wilkinson, Kristine Levine, Chic Gamine





Comedy

SXSW Fair Trade Comedy Showcase with Spit Take!

Wednesday 3/15, 8:30-11pm
@ Esther's Follies
525 East 6th St. Austin, TX

Featuring: Todd Barry, Brendon Walsh, Kristine Levine, DC Pierson, Nick Turner






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The SpitTake: Dedicated to professional comedy criticism

Brown Paper Tickets Comedy Doer Julie Seabaugh, whose overall mission is to elevate the public perception of stand-up comedy to that of an art form, recently launched TheSpitTake.com, a website dedicated to professional comedy criticism. The site boasts:

"No viral videos. No interviews. No recycled breaking news. No TV recaps. No ass-kissing. No bias. No mercy. Just honest, unfiltered, long-form reviews written by professional, knowledgeable comedy critics."

Check it out at TheSpitTake.com or follow it on Twitter at @SpitTakeComedy

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Pro Tip: Payment Processing Method
Series - PayPal

For intermediate and advanced producers

In this next installment of Pro Tips we will be talking about the different credit card processing methods that work with Brown Paper Tickets. Here is part 1 of 3 in this series.

The Financial Settings area of your Brown Paper Tickets account is found under the "Account" menu. Here, you may choose from several payment options (detailed below) to facilitate the processing of your ticket revenue to fit your unique needs. Please note that the currency you wish to collect funds in may limit the options available. US Dollar, Canadian Dollar, Pound Sterling, & Euro are all full service.

PayPal Basic

Benefits:

  • By using your PayPal Basic account to process credit card ticket purchases, you can receive funds from your ticket sales directly into your own PayPal account prior to your event date.
  • You may use your existing PayPal account to sell tickets. Your ticket buyers will be able to place orders using their own PayPal account or by using a credit card through PayPal's processors.

Considerations:

  • There are fees associated with utilizing PayPal Basic. These fees vary, and you are responsible for the payment of all those fees.
  • This option is not available for phone orders, at walk-up locations or through mobile apps. Purchases can only be made online.
  • Refunding of ticket orders must be handled directly by the producer. Client Services will need to be notified of any refunds so that the ticket cancellation portion can be handled.
  • Ticket buyers will be charged $0.99 and 3.5% of ticket face value. Brown Paper Tickets will receive $0.99 plus 1% of the face value of each ticket sold. You will keep the remaining ticket fees to assist in covering your credit card processing costs.

After filling out your Financial Settings, the last step in order to have all aspects of payment covered is to check your event details ("Events"> "Manage"> "Edit") under #5. Payment Details to ensure that you have the correct settings enabled.

In the next two Pro Tips we'll review two more payment options, Google Checkout and Amazon Payments.

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Infographs

Four favorite infographics for social media promotions

Branding

We love infographics. We love events. We love social media. They go together so nicely! For your viewing pleasure, here are some of our favorite infographics on the interwebs.

Event Marketing A-Z [view infographic]


How to Promote an Event Online [view infographic]


Social Media in the New Event World [view infographic]

Why People Participate in Fundraising Events
[view infographic]

Know another great infographic? Share with us on twitter (@BPTickets) and we'll send you a secret swag pack.

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Pro Tip: Producer Profile
For intermediate and advanced producers

Get the most out of your producer profile page.

When you set up your first event on Brown Paper Tickets, a producer profile page is created at the same time. This profile includes all your public information as well as a listing of all of your events. You can customize this page in order to better promote your events.

On your producer profile page, you can:

  • Give customers one link for multiple event listings.
  • Choose to display active events in a list or calendar format.
  • Choose to "hide" any of your events from view.
  • Give ticket buyers a description of your organization.
  • Customize the look and feel of your profile to match your own website and branding.
  • Enable a profile blog where ticket buyers can post comments regarding your events and organization.
  • Add additional images and video.

Your profile page can be found by logging into your Brown Paper Tickets' account and selecting "My Profile" under the Account Menu. If you would like assistance in customizing your profile page, you may contact technical support at tech@brownpapertickets.com.

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Artist Home

Success Story: Artist Home
By Jimmy Berg, Blog Manager


Kevin Sur from Artist Home shares event promo tips

Kevin Sur is the co-founder of Artist Home, a Seattle-based booking agency that's been making waves in the Northwest music scene with their unique approach to event production. He is also the talent buyer for the Columbia City Theater, a beautiful and historic 300-capacity venue in South Seattle. Since Artist Home took over the venue in 2010, they have transformed the once-struggling venue into what SPIN magazine calls "the city's finest sounding room" and one that artists now clamor to perform in, despite its out-of-the-way location. Since Kevin's been at the theater, many bands have experienced their first sold out shows, including The Head and the Heart, who are now making waves nationally after signing to legendary local label Sub Pop and appearing on Conan.

Arist Home

Kevin got his start in the Bay Area DIY punk scene, booking shows with bands he dug. He brought that approach to booking with him to Seattle and to Artist Home, which was established in 2008. Artist Home strives to create unique events that stand out from the norm. Whether it be focusing on niche genres, creating family-friendly events featuring music everyone can enjoy, or producing unique music festivals, Artist Home is a booking agency that thinks outside of the box. They're also clearly passionate about their events and the bands they book; that passion shines through in everything that they do.

Kevin stopped by our "Treehouse" office to share what makes his events so successful. His main word of advice to producers was to create events that you would want to go to yourself. He said not to worry about the financial side of event production. If you're creating great events, the audiences will come and the money will follow. Do it for the love of it, first and foremost.

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3 Best Event Branding Tips
3 best event branding tips

Branding

Making your event stand out above the hundreds of events happening on any given night is one of the biggest challenges you may face as an event producer. Securing top-notch talent and a solid promotional plan are key, but sometimes that isn't enough.

We've noticed that our more successful event producers present a solid brand image that is consistent with all the events that they produce. As an event producer, your event's brand is largely defined by visual representation. Branding can start with something as simple as a consistent color scheme or font, or it can be something more elaborate, like a particular style of artwork or a custom-designed logo. Whatever you choose, your imagery should be unique to you so that once people are familiar with your events, they can instantly recognize them the second they see your poster hanging in a shop window or see your ad in the local paper.

Three pointers for successful branding:

  • Target your audience: Know your audience and what kind of imagery attracts them. If your brand is focused and specifically targeted to your desired demographic, you will draw in the people most likely to buy tickets to your performances. If your branding is well thought-out and researched, attendees will already have an inkling of what's in store when they pay admission at the door.

  • Find an artist: Lack of artistic ability can be a hurdle. How are you supposed to develop an attractive brand when you can barely draw a stick figure? Obviously, not everyone is an artist, but most people know someone who is. Collaborate with an artist whose work you connect with and develop what it is you're trying to convey with your brand. An artist can help you develop your brand based on their artistic knowledge. Often times, artists will work for free or cheap in order to strengthen their portfolio. However, if their work is good, never hesitate to spend the money. In the end, you'll be glad you did.

  • Use your brand for future events: Once you have developed your brand, you can use it for future events. This allows you to focus your promotion plan, making it more effective. If the folks dug your last event, they'll probably be interested in future events and will tell their friends!

Your events are special so don't sell them short with bland, generic or inconsistent imagery. Even if developing a brand costs you a little money, it will be money well spent.

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Pro Tip: Event Extras
For intermediate and advanced producers

You have access to a little know section in your Brown Paper Tickets account called "Event Extras." Great bonuses are held within! You can browse questions submitted by ticket buyers, leave notes for our Call Center to consider when they answer calls about your events, adjust ticket layouts and more!

To access this area within your account:

  • Login
  • Select "Events" from the brown tool bar
  • Select "Manage" to the right of your event under "My Current Events"
  • In the Producer Menu on the left, select "Extras"

Here you will find:

Questions from ticket buyers
These questions are submitted by a ticket buyer from your event page. The question will first go to your Event Extras page and you will receive an email notifying you that the question has been submitted. You may answer the question by clicking on the "Edit" button to the right of it, and saving the answer. Your response will be sent to the ticket buyer's Brown Paper Tickets' account in a similar fashion. If you have not replied to the question within two hours after submission, it will drop into a queue for our call center to answer using the information that we have available.

Call Center notes
This is an area where you can communicate directly with our call center staff regarding your event. You may want to include details that you would like the Brown Paper Tickets' staff to know that may not necessarily be within your event description, or pieces of information that you would like to highlight. Please keep these notes concise and to the point!

Ticket reselling
When this option is enabled, ticket buyers are given the option to resell their tickets through Brown Paper Tickets' Resale System. Any value collected from the resale beyond the face value of the ticket is split between you and the ticket buyer at a percentage rate controlled by you. For example, if a ticket buyer purchases a ticket for 10.00, resells it for 20.00, and you allow the buyer to keep 80%, you will receive a total of 2.00 on top of your original 10.00 for the ticket and the original ticket buyer will receive 8.00 (18.00 - 10.00 spent on original ticket). Brown Paper Tickets will manage the cancellation and reissuing of resold tickets. This option is recommended only for will-call or for events using barcoding equipment.

Email ticket buyers
If you need to send a message out to your ticket buyers, this is the place to do it. The message will go out as a mass email to anyone who has agreed to release their contact information to you during the ticket purchasing process. If this is an urgent message that needs to reach all ticket buyers, check the "Urgent Message" box before you preview and submit the message. Brown Paper Tickets' staff will then review the message and send. Please note: an "Urgent Message" cannot include general advertising or promotional material.

Ticket layouts
If you offer your ticket buyers the option of choosing physical or print-at-home tickets, you are able to customize the text of the ticket layout that will be sent to them. If you do not choose to customize, a default layout will be printed that includes your event title, the date, location address, and price of the ticket.

Copy this event
This feature can be used to duplicate an event's information and populate it on a new event listing. Most of the information will be retained, however you will need to create new Dates and Prices. Although the new event will be nearly identical to the old one, it is always best to confirm that all details and settings are correct before submitting the duplicated event.

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5 Last Minute Promos
5 last-minute promotions to fill the house

5 last minute

What do you do when your event is just days away, but you still haven't sold enough tickets? Have no fear! Here are five recommendations for promoting your event at the last minute.

Email your list
This is the perfect opportunity to use your incredibly valuable email list. These are people who know and like your events. Many may already be attending, but there's a good chance a decent portion haven't bought tickets yet. Send out an email to let your list know the event is happening and ask that they pass it on to friends.

Don't just send one email. Only 20-30% of marketing emails are opened. Re-word the same email and send it again a few days later to entice the 70-80% that didn't open it the first time.

TIP: Use buzz phrases such as "Tickets almost gone!" and "Don't miss your chance!" These phrases create excitement and subliminally infer, "act now!" If there are tons of tickets left, you don't need to lie. Simply say, "limited quantities available."

Hype it on social media
With the same language you used to email your list, use your social media sites to create hype around the event. Use the same "Tickets almost gone!" phrases to create excitement. Don't forget to link to your ticket page!

TIP: Use your close friends and family to help hype your event. It's okay (on occasion) to ask for favors. Get your friends to post on their social media about your event. Most people will oblige.

Post your event on community boards
It may seem like a waste of time, but posting on community boards can help you sell those last few tickets. People look for things to do in all kinds of places. Post your event to Craigslist and any other community sites you can find.

Contact bloggers
It may be too late to get listed in printed publications such as daily and weekly newspapers, but not on blogs. Bloggers have the ability to post immediately. Email bloggers your event information. Be sure to include why their readers may find this event interesting.

TIP: Bloggers will be more enticed to write about your event if you offer them a couple free tickets to give away.

Paper the house
If the event you're putting on is something that you absolutely need to be full for some reason—for instance, to impress sponsors, or for a live recording—don't hesitate to paper the house. Papering the house is just a fancy way of saying, "give the rest of your tickets away for free." If the tickets are going to go to waste anyway, why not put some bodies in the seats? Give stacks of tickets to hotel concierges, baristas and servers. Keep a stack on you at all times and give them away to anyone you feel might be interested. These people could potentially become faithful followers.

TIP: Need bulk tickets printed ahead of time? Contact client services at 800-838-3006 x4.

Want one-on-one help coming up with last-minute promotion ideas?
Call our Event Promotions department at 800.838.3006 x5. We can go over your event specifically and help you improve your posting.

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Pro Tip: Making your money
For beginning, intermediate, and advanced producers

There are several ways to receive funds from your ticket sales on Brown Paper Tickets.

  • The simplest way is using the Brown Paper Tickets credit card processor.

    We cover the credit card transaction costs out of our service fee, $0.99 per ticket + 3.5% of the ticket face value.

    Payment for the face value of your ticket sales is sent to you within 10 days after the end of your event via USPS 1st Class Mail. If you would like to have your check expedited, call our Client Services team at 1-800-838-3006 x 4. We offer USPS Priority and Express, or FedEx. Rates vary, so give us a call!

To receive your check in a timely manner, make sure you fill out the "Financial Settings" page in your account. Log in and select "account" >> "financial settings" from the brown bar. Click on "BPT Credit Card Processor". Fill out the form, and click "add BPT processing".

The Financial Settings page also shows you other payment methods that are available.

  • If you need advance access to the sales funds, consider setting up a Custom Merchant Account through your bank, a PayPal Basic account, Amazon Payments, or Google Checkout.

    You will incur credit card transaction fees, but you'll receive a portion of our service fee to help offset those costs (2.5% of the ticket face value).  Give us a call at 1-800-838-3006 x 4 to find out more about the alternate payment options.

    You can choose to provide more than one payment method for your customers, but any options selected in "Section 5: Payment Details for the event" must also be configured in "Financial Settings." 

    Some alternate payment methods limit our Ticket Buyer Support options, so give us a call if you want to learn more at 1-800-838-3006 x 4.






Media Alerts
How to use media alerts to publicize your event

Venue Checklist

The event was flawless. Everything went without a hitch. The performers were on point! The servers and bartenders performed magnificently. Everyone deemed the food divine. Every single attendee had an exceptional experience. The ones who came, anyway. You really thought you'd fill more seats. What happened?

We've seen this happen so many times in the past. Great event; lackluster turnout. The question becomes: How do I make sure people know about my event? One way to achieve this is by getting local press to write a short blurb or list it in their show calendar.

One of the easiest and most succinct ways to get your event information to the media is through a media alert. You may be familiar with a media release (sometimes called a press release). A media alert is similar, but spoon feeds the need-to-know facts about your event directly to writers.

Writers love media alerts because they don't have to go searching for the information; it's all right there in front of them. Below are key tips for writing media alerts. You can also download a handy PDF resource guide here.

Don't forget your contact information.
Writers may need more information from you. They may need a photo. Or (if you're lucky) they might request an interview. Make sure your name, email address, and phone number are listed at the top.

List out your event information in clear who/what/when/where/why categories.
This helps writers quickly scan for important information. Listing out your event in this way enables them to see the unique pieces of your event without having to read through a long paragraph of information.

Send your media alert via email.
Writers these days, even writers for the old-timey daily newspapers—are used to doing almost all their work via email. They're busy; you're busy. They'll appreciate you making their lives easier by using email.

Do not attach anything to your email.
Attachments could mean a virus. Potentially virus-laden emails don't get opened. Don't send an attachment unless it's solicited.

Write clear subject lines.
The subject line to your email should start with "Media Alert" then a short descriptive about your event. Writers are more likely to look at an email if they know it is meant for them and not spam. For example: "Media Alert: The Rock Band to perform at Music Venue on February 1"

Download this handy, printable resource guide for more info on how write a media alert. (PDF)

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Pro Tip: Adding Dates
For beginner, intermediate, and advanced producers

Want to know the best way to add more dates to your Brown Paper Tickets event? It's easy!

On the event creation/edit page, dates are set up under the "4. Dates and Prices" section. "Date Start" and "Date End" refer to the event dates; often, these are misinterpreted as the sales period.

Note: The event times are on a 24-hour clock, so 2:00 p.m. is 14:00.

Note: "Max Sales" should be set to the total number of tickets available for sale for that date.

There are 3 ways to set up dates for your event. Here is what your dates should look like:

1. Single date event

SingleDate

2. Multiple date run of performance/Tours

MultipleDates

3. Passes

WeekendPass

The "End All Sales: ____ hour(s) before the starting time" in the Add a Date section refers to when all sales should end for the event. This time can be set from 1-48 hours before the event. Once this cutoff time has been reached, the Final Sales List will be generated and emailed to you after 30 minutes. After this time, our call center will refer any requests from customers regarding changing the orders (e.g. refunds, reschedules) to you via the public contact information on the event page.

Once dates have been added, you are able to make changes or corrections by clicking on "Edit" to the right of the Date. Note: Trying to change information under "Add a Date" will create a whole new date that you might not want!

If you need any help or have any questions regarding this information, please give us a call at (800) 838-3006 and press 4 to speak with Client Services.


Venue checklist
Venue checklist

Venue Checklist

Whether you're trying to find a venue for your daughter's Sweet 16, or a place for your band to play, or a stadium for your touring show, finding the right venue can be tough. We know. We've been there! To help you out, we tapped some of the best and brightest minds here at the Brown Paper Tickets HQ to come up with a checklist of everything that needs to be considered when scoping out venues for your event. Download the checklist (PDF) here.

We've broken venue considerations into three categories: Specifications, Amenities and Logistics.

Specifications: When looking at the specifications of a venue, walk through the process as if a time-lapsed version of event night. Where do you load in? Where will the stage be? Where are the outlets? Will it be standing room only, or will there be seating? Is it big enough? Too small?

TIP: We've found that with any kind of event, a big crowd in a small room is always better than a small crowd in a big room. Patrons feel more comfortable around people and are more likely to participate or mingle. Big rooms with not many people can feel isolating and cold.

Amenities: Nice to have, but not every venue provides them. Think of amenities as extras. Different venues have different extras. Find out what those extras are, and identify which are most important to you. Are you looking for a venue for a band showcase? Ask if the venue provides the staff to check I.D.s and bouncers (just in case). Maybe you'll have to staff some of these positions yourself. It's better to know ahead of time rather than getting stuck working the door at your own event. When touring a facility, look around. Go in all the rooms. Do you need coat check? Is a huge, stocked backstage important to you? Is it important the bathrooms are graffiti free? Look around for these things.

Logistics: Like everything else, venues are a business. They have policies, fees, and restrictions. Find out what these are before signing the contract. When will you get paid out? If you need to pay performers that night, find out if you get paid from the door that night. Show needs to get canceled? Make sure you know your venue's cancellation policy. There's nothing worse than having to cancel a show but still pay for the venue in full. All venues have fees of some sort. Ask about them outright and request a printed list of all possible fees. It's better to know ahead of time than to be surprised.

With so much to keep in mind while checking out a venue, it's easy to forget something. Print out this checklist (PDF) and take it along with you.

Approve your event fast
Get your event approved fast: 3 easy tips to avoiding snags

3tips

Want to get your event live and start selling tickets faster? Getting your tickets on sale to your customers can be as easy as 1, 2, 3. Your events can be approved with lightning speed by our amazing Client Services team by remembering just a few key elements.

1. Look closely at your dates and times.

One of the most common delays in event approval is discrepancies in dates and times. Pay close attention to AM and PM settings. Many times when an event ends at midnight, the event will be configured incorrectly. For instance, if an event takes place at 7:00 PM on December 24 and ends at midnight, it does not end at 12:00 PM on December 24. Although it's intuitive for many of us to do this, this indicates it will end at noon on December 24. Unless you are hosting a time traveling event, set the end time as 12:00 AM on December 25. Occasionally producers will accidentally input the dates of ticket sales as the event date. Remember, these are separate dates and times. Ticket sales dates are the time-frame in which you want your tickets on sale. Event dates are the dates/date in which your event is taking place. Also, it may sound silly, but make sure the year is correct, especially as we are coming into a new year.

TIP: Have a second set of eyes check your dates and times.

2. Double-check the address and contact info.

All your guests are dressed to the nines for your French Revolution Masquerade Ball and showing up to your home office instead of the venue. Oh no! Avoid the headache of accidentally sending your ticket buyers to the wrong location or having customers calling your personal cell phone for ticket information. Before submitting your event, double check the venue address and the contact information you provide to your ticket buyers.

TIP: Don't forget to include the area code of the phone number as sometimes people attend events from outside your immediate area.

3. Set smart limits on each price level

You can set the amount of maximum tickets to be sold for individual price levels. You can use this for things like VIP, student or senior tickets. Our system will never allow more than your overall event maximum to be sold, regardless of the quantities you allow at each level. However, if you want to avoid selling all your tickets at discounted rates, you can specify exactly how many discounted tickets should be sold. This allows you to tightly control your ticket pricing, and ultimately, the amount of money your event brings in.

By following these three steps, you can move like a pro through our event-approval process. Want more help? You can call Client Services at 800.838.3006 (option 3). We're here for you 24/7.



Reach more ticket buyers!

We're pleased to announce the launch of our envelope insert advertising program. You can now place advertisements in the ticket envelopes of the events posted on Brown Paper Tickets.

To make your advertising even stronger, you can target your advertisements by city, region or even event type. This means that you could reach all the jazz ticket buyers in New York, or every one who bought a dance performance ticket on the west coast, or even simply the Roller Derby fans in Wisconsin. Whoever you want to reach, we can help!

For more information, download our Envelope Insert Request form (PDF) or call 800-838-3006 (option 3).




Cancel your event
Catastrophe hits! Five things to do when you must cancel an event.

Every winter brings the chance of rain, wind, snow, blizzards, flooding and sub-zero temperatures. We can only hope a catastrophe doesn't happen on the day of your event, but what if it does? Here's 5 steps to take if faced with making difficult decisions in the middle of a storm.

1. Contact Client Services immediately.
When faced with a canceled event, or even an event that is facing complications—such as ticket buyers not attending due to icy roads—contact the Client Services team right away. They can help guide your steps and how you will communicate with your ticket buyers. If your event is canceled due to weather, they can help you call and/or email ticket holders to let them know. Plus, by being equipped with knowledge about what's going on with your event, you'll empower our call center to better answer questions for your ticket holders and resolve refund requests in a way you specify.

2. Put customers first.
Your ticket buyers are your number one priority. You can turn a bad-weather situation into a chance to demonstrate above and beyond customer service. If you plan to reschedule your event for another date, let your ticket holders know immediately. If someone cannot make it to the rescheduled date, you can again offer a refund, or offer a complimentary or discounted ticket to a future event. If your event needs to be out-right canceled, you can offer refunds.

Bonus tip: Be sure someone is located at the event location to greet any ticket buyers who show up to the event. Even if you make every effort to contact ticket buyers, some still may not get the message. Walking up to a closed, cold, empty building is a bummer.

3. Reschedule your event.
It may be easier to reschedule your event rather than flat-out canceling it. In a couple easy steps, you can change the date on your pre-existing event page on BrownPaperTickets.com instead of creating a whole new event page. Again, be sure to contact Client Services so they can help you and your ticket buyers with this process.

4. Provide alternate transportation ideas.
The show must go on! When the weather is bad, but your event is still on, you may worry about attendance. A couple good ideas we've seen from other Brown Paper Tickets event producers is to offer transportation options. You can email ticket holders with bus route options. We've also seen producers set up carpooling options for ticket holders. Again, this is something Client Services can help you with.

5. Have a backup plan.

If planning an event when you know there's a chance of dramatic weather, have a backup plan. We've seen plenty of times where an opening band can't get into town because of snow. Make sure there's another local option that can step in if need be. If the venue parking lot lacks attendants and it snows during your show, make sure you have snow shovels on hand. Recruit volunteers to help. Keep jumper cables handy so no one is stranded in your lot overnight. Think of these worse-case scenarios and try to imagine the best solution. With so many details to putting on a good event, the possibility of bad weather throws in more to consider. The better you are able to anticipate possible scenarios, the better prepared you'll be to meet these challenges and pull off a successful event even if the worse does occur.

Client services is here to help you in good times and bad! Call 800.838.3006 (option 3) or email Support@BrownPaperTickets.com.


Holiday Sales
Sell more tickets during the holidays

Tick tock. Your event day is coming right up and you still haven't sold the number of tickets you'd like? During the holiday season, there are a couple strategies you can apply to your promotions. Choose one, or choose them all, and you're bound to see results.

Black Friday sales. It works for retailers, it works for event producers. Add a discount code to your event valid only on Black Friday. Then, post your code on your social media sites and send it out via email to your lists. Work fast: Black Friday is THIS Friday. You don't have much time to set this one up. Need help setting up a time-sensitive discount code on your event? Email Support@BrownPaperTickets.com or call (800) 838-3006 (option 3) so we can help you.

Team up with restaurants. Turn your single event into an complete special-night-out experience. Partner with restaurants near your event to offer a "set meal" as a part of a ticket bundle. The restaurant chooses the meal and sets the price. You add the cost to your ticket price and offer the package on your event page. Now, not only do you have another attractive option for ticket buyers, but the restaurant will likely promote your event as well.

Kids enter free. Allow free entry for children under a certain age. Families looking for activities to keep busy during the vast school break will flock to your events if half the brood can get in for free. If your event is very family-friendly, you can even contact schools and ask for a promo to be inserted into their parent newsletters. Never underestimate the power of the parent newsletter.

Be charitable. Find a local charity to partner with and bundle a donation with a ticket level, or collect donations at your event. Not only does this offer cross-promotion opportunities and compel people to spread the word about your event on their social media networks, but it also gives you an opportunity to contact local press and ask them to feature your charity event. Even better, you get to create some actual good in the world simply by putting on your event. Win-win.

If you'd like more ideas on how to sell more tickets to your holiday events, just contact our Event Promotions team at Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com or (800) 838-3006 (option 5). We're standing by to help! Even if you don't ticket your events through us, we'll still help you out all that we can. Really. Consider this our year-round holiday gift from our family to yours. Joyous!



Brown Paper Tickets at Food Lifeline

nightingale

On Wednesday, November 8th, 7 team members from Brown Paper Tickets volunteered at Food Lifeline's repack center in Shoreline, WA. The team volunteered over 21 hours of their time and repacked 4,395 pounds of canned salmon and Grocery Rescue food. Their time and efforts resulted in over 4,000 meals. Woohoo!

>> View more photos here!



We're taking over the social space!

Brown Paper Tickets has just launched their Google+ page! On Google+ you'll be able to see more in-depth posts about your events and other cool tips. We're taking over the social space and would love nothing more than for you to join us.

>> Check out our Google+!


Nightingale Theater
Success Story: Nightingale Theater

By Graeme Thomas, UK Business Development

nightingale

I caught up with Kate Gowar, Theater Producer for the Nightingale Theater and she gave me an insight into what's happening at her venue in Brighton.

Kate's journey to the Nightingale is not a direct A to B route. Kate was a dance performer and artistic director for 20 years, which naturally led her to leave performing and study archeology. She later found that the call of the theater proved to be stronger and she was seduced back into the arts by an old dance colleague. She has not looked back since.

The Nightingale started as a informal performance space. Kate tells me it was their predecessors, Alister O'Loughlin and Miranda Henderson who saw the potential in the venue. With the support of Drink In Brighton, the venue “was resurrected as a modern, simple theater still retaining its charm and intimacy.”

It now offers opportunities to artists from various disciplines, be it experimental theater, new writing, spoken word, dance, film, performance installation, puppetry, mime or physical theater. It certainly sounds like there is some very interesting work being done here. “We do specialize in unusual performances” says the passionate producer, and this certainly seems the case. On October 29th, as part of the city-wide White Night celebrations, Rachel Blackman and Emma Kilbey invited audience members into the Nightingale office, one at a time, to share a pot of lukewarm tea and retrieve a half forgotten moment in “The Department of Unreliable Memoirs.”

There is so much going on at the theater. With such a diverse program there is always something for everyone. From Tom Thumb on the October 22nd and 23rd aimed at children ages 5-8 to the drama of Kalashnikov and the dance and music of Origo, which is fresh from the Budapest Fringe, both of which are on in November.

quote

Kate tells me it was David Sheppeard who runs the Pink Fringe and co-programs the Marlborough theater who recommended Brown Paper Tickets. It's good to hear the experience has been a good one with Kate commenting that “it has been very liberating to be able to control ticket sales instantly through Brown Paper Tickets. It is so easy, submit an event and offer a one-click sales point through our website, 24 hours a day. This is just what a very busy, but small and thinly staffed organization like the Nightingale needs.”

We are glad to take some of the load off as it appears to be all go at the Nightingale. With a full schedule and the launch of their own membership scheme along with the hosting more informal and social performance soirees, the future looks bright. There is certainly no lack of commitment and drive here, “We will continue to support the development and practice of artists who are creating work on the small-scale, and to present a high quality performance program.” Should time permit, instead of putting their feet up, “we might get around to redecorating the office too.”

Putting this dynamic theater producer on the spot, I asked for her top tip for other producers and got this great advise: “Be as responsive as you can to artists and as strategic as you can in programming!" Following on from this, I asked what question she would ask other producers: “How do you say 'NO' nicely but FIRMLY?” There's certainly no easy answer here, but if you have one please tweet it to @BPTUK.

For those who have not visited Brighton before, I asked Kate what else should they definitely do, and I was told to “go to Morocco's next to King Alfred Sports Centre in Hove and get a take-away ice cream. The choice is splendiferous, so it takes a while to decide. Feel the satisfaction of your decision as you sit on the beach and gaze out at the sea.” Sounds good to me. I am off to get my coat.





Do I need to be on Social Media?
Do I need to be on social media?

A question that I hear a lot while speaking with event producers is, "Do I need to be on social media?"

The short, less complicated answer is no. Managing a social media page is a time commitment. If you don't have the time to at the very least respond to people on social media (that's the whole point), your efforts could actually reflect badly. However, if you have a little bit of time and energy to maintain a profile (or two!), social media can provide fantastic returns: it helps build your brand, reminds people of your organization or company and its mission, and is an easy way to directly engage with your audience.

To figure out whether or not social media is worth your time, ask yourself a couple of questions:

Is my audience on social media? Do they want to speak with me there?
Some people do most of their interaction—and most of their day-planning—around social media. When you have an extra few minutes, look for similar organizations on social media. Are people responding to their posts and event invites? You should also use this time to see what people are saying about you online, if anything. Even if you can't maintain a social media profile, you should do this anyway. Set up a Google alert for you or your organization's name in quotes. Search on Twitter for you or your organization. Search Facebook to see if you have a Community Page. If a lot of people are talking about you already, you may decide investing time in social media is a wise idea.

Which sites should I be using?
This is not an all-or-nothing game. If you've found that most of your fans are on Facebook, start with just Facebook and go from there. If you primarily want to share photos, start with Flickr. If you primarily just want to share video, start with YouTube. There's always time to expand your presence. In the beginning, keep it manageable.

Who will maintain my profiles?
When making time for social media, it's important to figure out who's going to be maintaining your profiles. This could be one person or even a collection of people, provided you have the workflow down. Who in your company is skilled at writing content? Who has the company voice down the best? Is someone in your organization already social media savvy, and just hasn't used those skills at the workplace yet? If you're a small organization, bring it up to your team. You could be surprised to see who steps up. Or, if everyone is interested in pitching in, the time and effort could be spread so that one person is not responsible or all your social media management.

What next? How do I get started?
That really depends on which social network you want to start with. The Event Promotions Team is there to guide you through the process! Give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (option 5) or email me at promo@brownpapertickets.com and we'll help you get up and running in a jiffy. No questions are too small! Whether you'd like help setting up your first Twitter account, or something more advanced like running a video campaign on Facebook, we can help you get going.



Success story: Jen and Kerry's Business of Books workshops

Do you ever wonder why some events easily sell out and others starve for ticket sales? There are good reasons why some events are so successful while others languish. Authors and industry experts Kerry Colburn and Jen Worick have figured out the secrets to effective event promotions for their publishing workshops. We had the good fortune to sit down and chat with Kerry and Jen to hear what they had to say. Here's just a few of the lessons we learned:

Your ticket buyers are your best advertisers:
Jen and Kerry recommend giving back to the people that are your best ticket buyers—your customers! Specifically ask people that have been to your events to help spread the word. Offer discounts for referrals. Give public thanks for testimonials. Build and use your mailing list well.

Make the most of social media:
Jen and Kerry are active on both Twitter and Facebook. Not only do they post events on their profiles, they also publish more creative content such as testimonials, industry news and free advice. Both Jen and Kerry also write blogs, which provide another platform for promoting their live events.

Don't forget traditional media:
You can get a lot of mileage out of print and radio mentions. As Kerry said of their very first workshop, "We had a good number of people signed up, but then we had an NPR interview the morning of our first talk and our numbers more than doubled."

By sending traditional press releases to radio and podcast shows, they were booked for live interviews. They also cultivated a relationship with a local Seattle columnist, who printed many of the stories they pitched. As Kerry said, "The first event in our next series sold out the day that the newspaper column came out. We actually added an entirely new set of the series one week later and that also sold out."

Getting continued media coverage in a local market can be tough. Jen and Kerry recommend finding as many hooks and angles as you can to talk about your events from different perspectives. They have hired a freelance publicist to help them out.

More about Kerry and Jen:
Kerry Colburn and Jen Worick host a very popular series of workshops in Seattle that walk would-be authors through the whole publishing and book proposal process. They teach writers how to research and refine ideas, write a proposal and then navigate the world of publishing.

Learn more about Jen and Kerry and their fantastic events by visiting www.Bizofbooks.com.



How to: Host a screening

As told by Film Doer Sita Kaulesar Sukul

Have you ever considered hosting a film screening? It's easier than you may think! People all over the world are hosting screenings to strengthen communities, spread a message and simply make noise!

Here's what you need to do:

  1. Pick a film. (Check out my recommendations below!)
  2. Find a place to show the film.
  3. Choose partners—schools, radio and neighborhood blogs.
  4. Build the event with date, time and location.
  5. Publicize!
  6. Line up the equipment and test all the systems.
  7. Give your event an extra value—invite the filmmakers, speakers, local organizations, performers, etc.
  8. Reach out through blogs, your own websites, and other local media.

All ready to go!

Would you like to know more about how to screen a film in your community, or how to get your film seen? As the Film Doer, I'm here to help! Email me at: Sita@brownpapertickets.com.

My film recommendations:

Missrepresentation
missThe film explores how the media's misrepresentation of women has led to the under-representation of women in positions of power and influence. When the film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, audiences were riveted, and Oprah Winfrey acquired its broadcast rights.

The Freedom Film
freedomThe film accumulates startling facts and statistics regarding the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. It leaves audiences shaken, armed with a new perspective, and asks the question, “What can we do?” You can screen this film for free!



A day at White Center Food Bank

Team members from Brown Paper Tickets volunteered to serve individuals at the White Center Food Bank near West Seattle. We helped package and serve food to about 50 people in about 3 hours. What an incredible way to spend a morning!





Video
4 Ways to Use Video to Inspire Fan Interaction Online

As told by Bob Baker, www.TheBuzzFactor.com

In case you didn’t know, online video consumption is huge. According to Nielsen, more than 10 billion videos were streamed in the U.S. alone during the month of June 2011. That should come as no surprise, since video is a more engaging way for consumers to enjoy entertainment and information. This is especially true for emerging musicians, who are trying to cut through the clutter and reach new fans. No doubt about it: You should be using video to promote yourself online.

Of course, you can create and post music videos -- from slick productions to low-tech live performances -- on YouTube and other video sites. You can also post video clips of your recording sessions, life on the road, or fan reactions at live shows.

But there’s another way to use video that most musicians don’t even consider. I’m talking about creating video clips that are specifically used on your website as welcome messages, greetings, and calls to action.

Here are some examples:

  • Home page welcome. When fans come to your website for the first time, wouldn’t it be nice if you give them the option of watching a special video message from you: “Hi. Thanks so much for visiting my website. Here you’ll find...”
  • Email sign-up page greeting. Hopefully, you realize the importance of building a mailing list of fans (hint: it’s the most powerful marketing asset you can have) and that you should create incentives for fans to sign up. Add some extra muscle to those efforts with a short video clip on your mailing list sign-up page. You might say, “I have so many exciting projects coming up, and I don’t want you to miss out on all the free music downloads I’ll be giving away. So please take a moment right now to fill in your name and email address in the form below...”
  • Sales page explanation. When fans click to your music sales page, give them more than a list of your albums and where they can buy them. Place a video at the top that explains the different options and helps them choose the best collection of songs for their needs.
  • Live event teaser promotion. You might not be able to do this for every show, but for the really important gigs, wouldn’t it be great to post a video of you saying, “We’re really looking forward to our next show at the XYZ Club. We will debut two brand new songs that night and will draw the names of three lucky fans to come up and join us onstage for the last song. We hope to see you there on Friday, October 14.”

For a good example of this video concept in action, check out how musician Jana Stanfield uses video on her site to connect with meeting planners here.

This article is adapted from Bob Baker’s new book, "Guerrilla Music Marketing Online: 129 Free & Low-Cost Strategies to Promote & Sell Your Music on the Internet." For more information, visit: http://www.bob-baker.com/buzz/online-music-promotion.html

Hear something helpful? Click here to tweet this article and share with your followers.



Expand your reach with our Spanish site!

Brown Paper Tickets en español provides complete ticketing services for events of all sizes. All services, including event posting, promotional assistance and 24/7 live customer service, are provided free to event producers on our new site! We are very proud to serve the Hispanic community and happy to better promote your events to the 329 million Spanish-speaking people across the globe.



Win Bob Baker's "Guerrilla Music Marketing Online!"

To win, all you need to do is send a tweet to our @BPTickets account of your favorite guerrilla marketing tip for your band or business anytime today through Friday. We will randomly select a winner and contact you directly. Good luck!


The Biggest Mistake
The Biggest Mistake Event Organizers Make
When Posting Events.
(Hint: It's in the Details.)

Looking at event descriptions all day long, there's one large mistake I see event organizers making again and again: not posting the awesome little details that make their event compelling. With so many events going on any given night, one little detail can make or break a ticket sale. These same details make your event interesting to both press and new audiences. So how do you know which details to post?

Here's a good example of the difference a few details can make. If you're looking for something to do on a Friday night, which of these events are you more likely to go to? One with this description:

Rock show with music and food. Starts at 8 p.m. 70's theme. Contest.

Or one with this description:

Celebrate National Fun Day with:

  • COOLEST BAND EVER (former members of Old Favorite Band and That Band with The Song)

  • Other Cool Band (Austin, TX indie explosion)

  • Your Sister's Band (local guitar/synth duo)

Coolest Band Ever and friends will rock out with their unique brand of rock-inspired synth-dance while you skate around Skate World's gigantic roller rink.

Does skating make you hungry? We have Super Awesome Hot Dogs parked right outside, with both meat and veggie dogs to give you the energy to keep on skating. The skating rink has a bar in the back for 21+ adults who need libations.

The theme is ROLLER DISCO, and we're going to be having a best-dressed contest to win an iPod Touch judged by local celebrity Joe Schmoe. So bust out your polyester and start growing your mustache!

Doors are at 8 p.m., with all the action starting at 9 p.m. $5 gets you into the show, a locker and a pair of skates.

Guess what? They're the same event.

Often event producers, already knowing how awesome their event is, will forget that ticket buyers don't know the same details: what band is playing, what kind of music, what activities will happen, or what's included in the admission price. A few key details can be what sells your event—and you don't even have to have a creative writing background to make them sound nice!

Having trouble figuring out which details are important? Brainstorm your event description with the five Ws:

What is this event, what does it entail, and what activities will happen there?

Who will be there, or who should attend.

Where doesn't just refer to the physical address of the event, but the space itself. What's cool about the venue? It doesn't have to be a roller disco to be awesome—referencing your venue can be as simple as throwing in mention that the venue is historic, or that it has a patio.

When is the event happening? Is there a separate door and show time? Is this to commemorate a special event?

Why is the event happening? This is perhaps the most important of all. Is this to celebrate something? To benefit a charity? Because the bands are awesome and you want everyone to have a good time?

By double-checking all the Ws before you publish your event enables you to tap into audience bases you didn't even know were there. Try it and see!

Want one-on-one help improving your event description?
Call our Event Promotions department at (800) 838-3006 (option 5). We can go over your event specifically and help you improve your posting.

Need help editing your existing event posting? Please call our Client Services department at (800) 838-3006 (option 3). Our team is standing by 24/7 to help with all your technical and account questions.

Hear something helpful? Click here to tweet this article and share with your followers.



Follwers to Buyers
Sell more tickets on Twitter: Five ways to turn followers into ticket buyers

You know you can use social media to sell tickets online. If only you knew how... It's easy! Here are five simple things you can do to turn your Twitter followers into ticket buyers.

1. Say exactly what you want.
Posting information about your events on your Twitter feed is an excellent start. Increase the number of conversations by saying exactly what you want people to do. For example, instead of simply posting "Excellent blues show tonight at the Red Door!", try "Buy your tickets now to tonight's excellent blues show at the Red Door!". (Of course, remember to include the link!) This makes it easy for your followers to know that you aren't simply posting nice-to-know information, but are asking for action.

2. Don't always talk about yourself.
Have you ever been on date with someone that talked about themselves the whole time? You know how easy it is to tune them out and how unlikely it is that you will ever spend time with them again. It's the same on social media. If you are only talking about your events, people are going to get sick of you and stop paying attention. We like to follow a loose three to one rule. For every single self-serving post, we post at least three more times about things that have nothing to do with us but that our followers may be interested in. These other posts can be links to industry articles, funny pictures, shout-outs to people we admire and so on. Need help thinking of more things to post? Call Sarah in Event Promotions at (800) 838-3006 option 5. She's a whizz at helping people come up with interesting content. (For free!)

3. Link! Link! Link!
Buying tickets to your event should be effortless. Don't make your interested followers have to hunt around or search for your event. Every time you mention your event, include a link where people can buy tickets. Don't just link to the Brown Paper Tickets home page, but directly to your event page.

4. Give tickets away.
Buzz is beautiful. The more people talking about your event, the higher the demand for your tickets. You can get people talking by offering a couple pairs of tickets as giveaways on your Twitter feed. Make it simple. For example, ask people to RT (retweet) your event link and say why they want to go. Then choose the winner from the RTs. By sacrificing just a couple pairs of tickets, you can get more people talking about your event to their friends and followers, reach a bigger audience and fill even more seats. Plus, free giveaways train your followers to watch your feed closely. No one wants to miss a freebie!

5. Use tools to make your life easier.
Perhaps you don't have eight hours a day to sit and play on social media? Shocking! No worries. There are tools you can use to make your life easier. Online tools such as HootSuite and TweetDeck allow you to schedule out posts in advance. This means you can spend 15 minutes in the morning writing all your tweets for the day, then be done with it. You can also use these tools to quickly see who's talking to and about you and respond easily.

Hear something helpful? Click here to tweet this article and share with your followers.

Want one-on-one guidance to help you sell more tickets on social media?
Call our Event Promotions department at (800) 838-2006 (option 5). We can go over your event specifically and help you generate more ideas for early ticket sales.

Need help getting your Twitter feed to appear on your Brown Paper Tickets event?
Please call our Client Services department at (800) 838-3006 (option 3). Our team is standing by 24/7 to help with all your technical and account questions.



Sneak peak: Spanish site

This Thursday, we're launching the Spanish-language version of our site. This means that you'll be able to reach even more people as Spanish-speaking users will be able to navigate our site and purchase your tickets with ease.

¿Hablas español? Join us on our Spanish-language Twitter feed for updates on Hispanic cultural events, entertainment news and, of course, free tickets!



Woosh Ent
Success Story: Woosh Entertainments

By Graeme Thomas, UK Business Development

Woosh

I recently spoke with Keith Easton, Director and Event Manager of Woosh Entertainments Limited. Keith started Woosh Entertainments back in 1990 with his brother Graeme as a mobile disco business. They have seen it go from strength to strength and 2012 looks to be a very exciting year for them.

Keith tells me they started in Schools and Youth club discos and “went on to not only provide discos, but also music and announcements at Open Days, fundraising events, BBQs, fashion shows and live music events.” This led to DJ nights at some of Edinburgh's clubs and from there they “continued to diversify and develop to become Woosh Entertainments Limited, providing entertainment in terms of comparing, commenting, announcing and DJing at a variety of sporting events across the UK and in Europe.”

The business was developed further in 2010 Keith explains that, “on leaving my previous job as Venue Manager at Heriot-Watt University Students Association, I chose to develop Woosh Entertainments and we now work within the music industry by organizing gigs and helping to develop bands by providing music PR, band management and merchandising services.”

One of their many strings is running live gigs in Edinburgh and they have put on many great bands, including Aerials Up, The Deadly Winters, The Hussy's, Alan R Davison, and Six Storeys High.

It's not simply indoor events that Woosh Entertainments do. This event manager appears to do everything with his varied events includingannouncing and DJing for Scottish Football Association and Scottish Football League at Hampden Park, Scottish Rugby Union and Edinburgh Rugby at Murrayfield, World Snooker, GB and Scottish Basketball, GB Beach Volleyball, Loch Ness Marathon, The City of Edinburgh Council and The Rat Race Adventure Events."

"The Rat Race?" I queried. “Yes, some of the challenges that Rat Race Events put on are amazing”, Keith explains, “from asking participants to abseil down a football stadium to running through Sherwood Forest dressed as characters from Robin Hood! Let’s just say there’s never a dull moment.”

That's what we like to hear. Looking at the future I ask what's next for Woosh Entertainments.

“We are currently working on plans to open a rehearsal room and creative facility which can also be used for recording and photography. An exciting event we are looking forward to managing is the album release gig for Alan R Davison. Alan has put debut solo album, ‘The White Eagle Lounge,’ into action with a super-group of players involved in the recording including over 30 of Alan’s most trusted and respected musical friends. We’ve been hugely supportive of the project and look forward to working with Alan on the launch event.” I have to say I have heard some of the songs and it is going to be a great album. The 30 musical friends include Nathan Connolly and Tom Simpson from Snow Patrol, which is nice company to keep!

Quote

When asking what their experience has been like using Brown Paper Tickets, it was pleasing to hear that it has been a positive one. “Graeme Thomas has been very helpful in guiding us through the website and the tools. The level of support has been great and the added PR through Brown Paper Tickets re-tweeting and using Facebook has helped grow the profile of our events. It’s great to work with a company who sees the bigger picture.”

Referring to other producers, Keith says, “I’m always looking for new and innovative marketing ideas for events, so it would be good to hear them.” His producer tips are to “Delegate. If you have a team of people, use them. Also, and I know people think it’s dull, but it is important to bear in mind health and safety for acts, the audience, volunteers and visitors when you are deciding on a venue and planning the layout of the event. It is always useful to fill in a Risk Assessment Form as this shows good practice and attention to detail." This is great advice as it's true that in putting on an event there is hard work and responsibility, and this should not be overlooked. Keith is also keen to warn producers “don’t take volunteers for granted.”

As we head into 2012, I ask what the future holds. “2012 is going to be an important year. My brother has already been involved with one of the Olympics test events held in London in 2011 when he was the MC at beach volleyball. The bands we are working with, The Deadly Winters and Alan R Davison, will both have new albums to promote, so that’s always an exciting process to be part of. Also our plans to open a rehearsal and creative facility are taking up a lot of our time.”

When put on the spot and asked aside from one of his music gigs what should someone do when they come to Edinburgh, Keith said, “They should go for an excellent pint of Stewart’s 80/- in The Diggers.” Well, I'll drink to that.

Visit Woosh Entertainment's Website: http://www.woosh.tv/

On Twitter: @wooshevents


Tips to Early Sales
Three tips for early sales


You can avoid the havoc caused by last-minute ticket sales by selling a good portion of your tickets well in advance of your event. Early ticket sales help you better plan for capacity and staffing, cover upfront costs and gauge event demand. Here are just a few things you can do to get people to buy tickets in advance.

1. Early bird discounts:
Early bird discounts not only reward your most loyal and attentive fans, but also drive a nice percentage of presales. Set your time-sensitive early bird discount for even just $5 off the face value and you can start filling seats right away. As Andrew Wood of the San Francisco International Arts Festival explained to us, presales are the most valuable. With last-minute ticket sales you never know what your numbers are going to be and it's incredibly difficult to plan for staff and capacity. Lowering ticket prices just a little for the early bird discount is a great way to drive early sales and have a strong event.

2. Post higher door prices:
Post a higher price for tickets bought at the door to provide incentive to buy early! However, if people don't know there will be an increase, they won't feel any urgency to buy early. Even if you are selling advance tickets online, publish your door prices online as well.

3. Create a sense of urgency:
Limit the number of tickets available at a discounted price and let people know that only a few are available. While it's not cool to lie about the amount of tickets left, it's smart to release just a small amount for discounts and use scarcity to increase demand. As your event approaches, update the number of tickets available. (This can be done automatically on Brown Paper Tickets.) You can also create limited quantity tickets for things such as VIP seating, fan club pricing, or tickets with souvenir bundles. Post updates on your social media channels like Twitter and Facebook when discounted tickets are almost gone.

Want one-on-one guidance to help you sell more advance tickets to your events?
Call our event promotions department at (800) 838-3006 (option 5). We can go over your event specifically and help you generate more ideas for early ticket sales.

Need help setting up special discounts or different ticket prices on your Brown Paper Tickets event?
Please call our Client Services department at (800) 838-3006 (option 3). Our team is standing by 24/7 to help with all your technical and account questions.



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