How to increase event participation

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Plymouth running festival
Le Cure

How to Increase Event Participation

It’s two months before your fundraising sporting event, your event registration website is looking great, but the participation numbers aren’t yet as high as you anticipated. Making the event a success is not only essential for charities and participants, but also for your group/organisation to ensure that this event becomes more than just a one-off. So, what can you do?

Engage your entrants

You’ve already got sign ups, so make them your ambassadors through targeted marketing and incentives. Consider offering a ‘recommend a friend’ discount code, create a team page to encourage them to get more people involved, or reference them on social media to build momentum. Your current customers can be your biggest marketing tool, so make sure you’ve used them to spread the word.

Experiment with your pricing

Increase your pricing, decrease your pricing. Conflicting advice, but both useful for achieving different goals. An early bird rate can help to drive sign ups, as limited time before a price rise will motivate those who have been delaying their sign up. Add a young adult rate, a silver runner rate – encourage the age groups who are not currently signing up to do so with targeted offers. Offer a slight discount a month before and see if that encourages more people to attend.

Talk to your local community

Whether its local sports teams, trainers or leisure centres, these groups are all very likely to want to support a sporting event in their region. You could create a team offer for the football, rugby, cricket and hockey teams or put a poster in the local University sports hall to get students signed up. These organisations all have audiences who fit your demographic, so get in touch with as many as you can and utilise their reach.

Get your chosen charity to support

If you have charity partners, ensure your chosen charity is sharing the event information on social media, through their newsletter and other communications. Ask them to send their followers to your home page from where they’ll easily be able to sign up.

List your event

If you haven’t already listed your event, there are several places for you to list your event. Runners World, FindaRace – get your event listed on these sites and catch people when they are looking.

Review what’s working

Like all marketing, it’s imperative to test and measure what is working. Once your social campaign is under way you need to use analytics to review activities and evolve the actions accordingly. If you are paying for advertising, monitor its return on investment. Even for smaller events, ensure the time taken for your marketing in generating returns, and if it isn’t, try something new.

Our platform can not only show you social engagement but also the pledges made – great additional data to share with the entrant. Using the Race Nation platform will give you all the tools you need to try these approaches and take control of your entry process, allowing you to focus on delivering a great event. If you’re interested in finding out how Race Nation can help you, get in touch with our team now. If you have any marketing success stories for your event, we’d love to hear from you and share them with our community.

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