I've worked with field owners for years to develop more profitable environments and events through well-designed graphics and marketing. This post outlines the best way to market paintball events and the statistical growth my clients have seen through these techniques.
Simply marketing events to past customers can often bring in more players than an average week. Think July 4th, President's Day, Martin Luther King Day. Normally you may not even open on these holidays, but if you do you can access potential players, specifically school-age kids who have the holidays off. We had incredible results at Paintball Minnesota when we implemented special holiday event campaigns.
3 Facilities with 24 Total Events Increase Admissions by 189%
In 2014, all three PBMN facilities were run mostly on the standard model of group reservations and walk-ons. In 2015, we designed and marketed 24 events and saw a huge growth in sales and admissions.
We chose holidays that land on Mondays specifically because of the historically low average number of players. We used free advertising platforms available to us (explained below) and successfully increased the admissions on these slower days by an average of 189%. Sales grew along with admissions, although sales fluctuated depending on the discounts offered at each event.
The biggest factor in marketing paintball events is e-mail marketing using addresses obtained from your current customers. If you're a field owner using a system like Vantora to serve and store waiver information, you have easy access to an e-mail list. A dormant e-mail list isn't any good to you, so put it to work!
Before you send out e-mails to all your customers, take some time to prepare your campaign.
Make sure you're offering something of value to your audience. Offer discounts on products that have low costs, like rental equipment or admission.
Craft your campaign to first catch reader's attention with a subject line like, "Free Paintball this Weekend," then hold their interest with a well-designed graphic that gets them excited about the event.
My friends at PBMN found that value statements like "Play paintball for only $25" worked better than "Save $9 on Admission."
Loyal customers aren't easy to come by, but they can be attracted by exclusivity. Share information on your field operations and personnel to build a level of trust.
If you have a blog on your website, write a follow-up post with more details on the event. Provide a link to it in your e-mail for those who want more information.
Design social media graphics and share leading up to the event.
Advertise at the field with posters or flyers.
Plan to send your campaign 5-7 days prior to the paintball event.
Keep track of your sales and customers. Use a coupon in your e-mail and track how many players use the coupon. If you do everything right, you should get a good return on your e-mail marketing alone.