Are you looking for tactics to increase the attendance at your museum or institution? Here are eight marketing tips for increasing museum attendance that can drastically increase your museum’s ticket sales both in the short term and long term.
1. The Truth is in the Data
First, perform a zip code analysis of past attendees to determine your core geographic footprint. This move will allow you to advertise in the areas where you are already having success appropriately.
2. Fish Where the Fish Are
Most museums constantly review attendance trends to determine the ebbs and flows of their turnstile, however, the important step is what we do with that data. Following this examination, layer your advertising at the time of year where you have had the highest propensity to move the tickets. Adversely, layer your discount strategy when ticket sales are the slowest. This will have the highest impact on both ticket sales and revenue.
3. Be More Than Just a Pillar of the Community
You are already an essential institution in the community; businesses want to work with you! It is imperative that you weave your institution into the fabric of the city. Libraries, hotels, and visitors bureaus are a great place to start. Branching into large brand name companies like chain restaurants, supermarkets, and automobile dealerships will help complete the process. If you’re looking for a longer list of partnership opportunities, click here.
4. A Free Bit of Advice About Free Advertising
If you are designated as a non-profit, apply for a Google Ad Grant. How does $10,000 of FREE advertising EVERY month sound? Many non-profits have no idea that by applying for a Google AdWord Grant, they will get just that! That said, don’t forget the importance of managing this platform; we see just as many non-profits who have the Grant, but don’t actively use it.
5. Stay on Target with Social
Facebook advertising works! It is a low-cost method that is extremely targeted, thus a smart way to reach your customer base. A tip within a tip: always do Facebook’s ads and don’t boost your posts. Want to learn more about the difference? Check out our blog with more tips on Facebook (link 8 Best Practices for Marketing and Advertising on Facebook blog)
6. Not All Attendees are Created Equally
Influencers are called influencers for a reason. They can make or break your museum attendance, so why not invite them (and their families) to your museum with no strings attached. Radio hosts, concierges, bloggers, and the like can all become ambassadors for your brand with a simple invitation.
7. Trim the Fat
Is your marketing budget too small? Maybe, you need to review your current practices to identify what is either inefficient or just ineffective. We encourage our museums to take a hard look at those line-items in your budget that are grandfathered in year-over-year with very little analyses. With that analysis, make the necessary changes to free up your budget for what works (see 1-6 above!)
8. Time Can be on Your Side
Create a PR calendar. It might seem rudimentary because your institution already gets “great press”, but a timeline will allow you to identify and plug holes in your PR calendar through manufactured press stunts. Many times this is where your big win’s will come from.
If you need help with any of these marketing tactics to increase museum attendance and/or looking for marketing help in general, let’s chat! Contact us today!