Sunday, 24 October 2010

EventElephant using social media to set it apart from herd

Irish Tech journalist, Marie Boran recently did a feature piece on EventElephant for the Irish Times, focusing on our social media strategies and how social networking is contributing to our revenue and its impact as a lead generator. You can read her article here.

FOR ONLINE businesses, global reach also means global competition but Dublin-based ticketing firm EventElephant is separating itself from the herd – by tapping into the fast-growing social media scene where word of mouth and “liking” something based on your friend’s recommendation are what sell tickets.

EventElephant was founded in 2008 but already has prestigious clients including KPMG and An Post, and is signing up nearly 500 new event organisers per month across Ireland and the UK.

Catering for smaller companies as well as large-scale events EventElephant is an end-to-end service that includes branded event website, secure online payments for tickets, a Facebook app for event promotion, sales tracking and a contact database that the client can export

The recently added Facebook integration provides an easy “one-click” way for events planners to socialise their event online without getting bogged down in social media strategies.

“We are currently running a survey to look at how social networking is influencing the choices people make about attending music events,” says Una Coleman, the firm’s marketing manager.

“For instance, 63pc of respondents say Facebook is their preferred platform to hear about music events and 48pc say they receive between one and five Facebook music event invites a week.”

Social media is also an important enterprise tool for the company itself; 10pc of new business each month is a direct result of its social networking activity, which includes a blog, Twitter account and LinkedIn group.

“In as much as we can, resources permitting, we manage our presence across all the key social networking platforms. Facebook is becoming a hub for events, particularly entertainment events,” says Coleman.“We’ve had some great wins recently via Twitter including London Air Ambulance, and Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce.

As well as keen use of social media, EventElephant has also taken another leaf out of the new wave of Silicon Valley start-ups’ handbook: bootstrapping is preferable to relying on external funding.

“Bootstrapping is always difficult, especially when developing very complex software and there is a big investment required in the technology. Operating a ‘lean start-up’ as recommended by Eric Ries, a Silicon Valley author, speaker and consultant, you watch the costs like a hawk and measure everything.”

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