SECTION 6 – MARKETING AND PROMOTION

The Organisers must dedicate themselves to promote the event to attract the public and sell the tickets, but also to explore other income possibilities such as merchandising and adverts in the event’s programme.

1. Ticket sales

The Organisers should make an estimate of the net income from ticket sales. The factors to consider are:

-the number of days and sessions to play
-the ticket price which can vary according to the attractiveness of the matches
-the percentage of seating capacity sold

The semifinals and finals are naturally easier to sell whereas it can prove difficult to sell seats for early days and day-time sessions.

It may be an option to distribute free tickets for morning sessions to promote the game and attract the spectators to return and pay for tickets later during the event.

Another option would be to focus the promotion of day-time sessions on for instance schools or retired people. Bringing pupils and students to the event is one of the best forms of promotion not only for the event, but for the whole sport.

If the tickets are sold per session the venue should be cleared between the sessions.

The following incentives and ideas can be used to increase ticket sales:

-offer agencies a higher commission
-offer individuals commission on sales
-offer discounts for earlier bookings
-offer tickets for a less attractive session with the purchase of an attractive session ticket
-offer packages with accommodation or together with other events 

2. Public awareness of the event

The public awareness of the event should be addressed. The main segment is people already familiar with the sport. They should be approached through the regular channels like e-mails, newsletters, webpages, magazines, etc.

However, to fill the venue it is important to also attract the regular public that normally has not preference for the sport.

The media can be used to create awareness of the event, but also alternative activities in alternative locations can be useful.

Some ideas could be:

-pre-event promotion of top players/teams that have confirmed their participation
-using top athletes or celebrities to promote the event
-playing badminton in shopping centres or other public places
-having posters printed and displayed in public areas around the host city and region
-having billboards installed or adverts put on public transport vehicles

3. Website

The website will be one of the main communication points between the Organisers and the participants. It is also going to be a source of information for the spectators. Finally, it is a good place for promoting sponsors and partners.

Creating the event’s website or webpage is compulsory. In most cases the website should be online and running 3 months prior to the beginning of the event.

Before the event the website provides relevant information to participants and to spectators potentially interested in attending the event. The contents of the website need to be clearly arranged and precise which will help to prevent unnecessary miscommunication.

Clearly arranged contents together with an appealing design might help to improve the image of the event (and of the sport) and to attract more spectators. The sponsors will also welcome being presented in a more professional, sophisticated-looking online environment.

Some basic contents of the website could be:

-event title and logo
-dates
-venue
-ticket sales
-schedule and results
-information for participants
-information for spectators including accompanying programme for them (if any)
-merchandising
-host city and region
-sponsors and partners logos with links to their websites
-news, photos, videos and streaming from the event

During the event, it is essential that the contents of the website are kept up-to-date at all times. Short articles summarizing the daily happening at the competition, highlighting the performance of home favourites, will always be of benefit.

After the event, the website can be used for publishing photos and videos from the event, thanking the sponsors and partners, volunteers, spectators, etc. This should be done as soon as possible after the conclusion of the event. If already known, the dates and venue for the next edition of the same event should also be announced.

4. Social media

Next to website, social media is another very powerful internet tool available to the Organisers for promoting the event.

Using a Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or other accounts in connection with the event basically follows the same pattern as the website.

Before the beginning of the competition social media will help to create awareness of the event. Consequent sharing of contents during the competition is an actual form of live coverage from the event. Social media can also be used for thanking various parties as well as for sharing reflections on the event.

The biggest advantage of social media is that with the help of these networks information about the event will often spread faster and can easily reach more people in comparison to a regular website.

5. Merchandising

Event merchandise can both be used as promotion material and as income revenue.

Event merchandise can come in the form of memorable items from the event or items to be used while in the stadium to create the right atmosphere.

It is important to make a proper analysis of the quantities to be produced and the selling price. Overproduction can quickly turn profit into loss.

The merchandise can be sold at the venue but also via the event’s webpage or through the regular badminton network.

6. Event’s programme (printed)

The programme (in the form of brochures, booklets, …) will bring income from advertising and sales.

Preferably a professional design and print should be used if the estimated income from the programme allows it. Alternatively, a cheaper solution should be chosen.

It is crucial to contact potential advertisers very early in the process.

7. Media

Besides internet, an essential part of successful event promotion is the other mass media - television, press and radio. They are dealt with separately in Section 10 of this Events Manual.