Use Email To Sell More Gig Tickets

Email marketing will help your fans to give you money.

I recently read two posts on Music Business Worldwide that tackle the subject of getting fans to buy recorded music and concert tickets. Dave Cool’s post on the mistakes a lot of artists make with their websites is interesting and valid, especially his point about email marketing. Email is a massively useful marketing tool – Cool cites the fact that email is 40 times as effective as Facebook and Twitter combined(1). If you want proof, a quick Google around will turn up other posts, and books extolling the power of using email to attract and keep fans. But why is email so effective at reaching your fans?

According to Ian Brodie, an email marketing and consultant, email is effective for four main reasons:

  • Everyone uses email.
  • Email is personal.
  • Email marketing is perfect for following up with someone.
  • Email is ‘scalable’ (ugh, I don’t like that word).

Brodie’s book, ‘Email Persuasion’ will give you all the facts and figures to support his assertions, and I agree with what he says. Remember, you need to ‘market’ your concert tickets & music to your audience, and it is easy to get sucked into the social media world, fixating on Facebook Likes, re-Tweets and Instagram regrams. Consider though, we send nearly 200 billion emails a day(3) – Facebook ‘Likes’ are ‘only’ 4.5 billion daily – and most of use email as our primary work-based communication. Which basically means – we read email! We might miss a tweet or a Facebook post, and certainly not always take action even if we do read a post, but we do open, and read, our email. Not just in the ‘office’ either – mobile use accounts for45% of all email opened! (2)

Email can also be personal. You send an email to a person (as designated by their email address), not post it up and hope lots of people see it. And, using email services such as Aweber, Convertkit, or Mailchimp, means you can send personalised emails to tens, hundreds, even thousands of people at one time.

Obviously there are problems with email. The very fact you can send to thousands of people, who may not be interested in what you have to say, or may not even know you, can lead you to being accused of spamming. Used correctly though, and with care taken to get peoples email addresses from them in a legitimate and meaningful way, marketing through email should be the most effective way to tell existing fans about your concerts and festival appearances, and also to get new fans to come to your shows.

Which brings me onto the post, also in Music Business Worldwide, by Mark Meharry, CEO of Music Glue. Meharry highlights the difficulty faced by fans trying to buy physical music, downloads, t-shirts and concerts tickets from artist websites. Often or not, he says, the fan ends up being shunted around to various places away from the artists main site, having to create different accounts and pay separate times. They basically do not enjoy a ‘joined up ‘experience. He says fans want to give ‘us’ (artists, record companies, promoters etc.) their money – but can’t.

The same is true for receiving information. Fans want to know what you are up to – where you are playing, how much the tickets are, who also is on the bill, so to feel reassured about buying a ticket.  So, you may send out all your concert and show information via Facebook for instance.  What if one of your fans ‘does not do Facebook’, prefers Twitter, or misses your post in her news feed? To avoid this happening you have to send out announcements via ALL the social networks, which can be time consuming (even with tools such as Buffer or Hootsuite) and again, makes if difficult for the fan. They want to know what you are doing – and you make it difficult for them to find out!

I think you can see where I am going with this – email. One single email, containing all the information your fan needs – where the concert is, a link to buy a ticket, an upsell for early bird purchases etc. – all the in one email. An email your fan will open, and read. And probably make a purchase– studies show that 40 times as many purchases came from links in emails than from Facebook or Twitter. (3)

It’s probably time then to have another look at your email marketing. A good start would be to check with Hubspot (inbound marketing specialists) to see what they say about setting up your email marketing correctly.

Drop me a line or post in the comments if you have any questions.


  1. Aufreiter, Nora, Julien Boudet, and Vivian Weng. 2014. “Why Marketers Should Keep Sending You E-Mails.” McKinsey & Company. January. http://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/marketing-and-sales/our-insights/why-marketers-should-keep-sending-you-emails.
  2. Smith, Lauren. “How to Optimize Your Emails for Mobile: A Beginner’s Guide.” Blog.Hubspot.com, June 23, 2014. http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/email-marketing-mobile-optimization-tips#sm.00012g7jmdtendy2yi216pg3erea9.
  3. Brodie, Ian. Email Persuasion. Fairfax: Rainmaker Publishing, 2013.
error: I would prefer if you did not try to do that.