The Ultimate Guide to Selling More Tickets for Your Tour or Attraction

Geraldine Lee
June 21, 2023

For tour operators and attractions, increasing ticket sales is essential for success.

Selling more tickets means you are able to reach a larger audience, generate more revenue, and build your customer base. With the right strategies in place, you can easily boost ticket sales for your business.

In this guide, we will discuss some of the most effective methods for increasing ticket sales for tours and attractions. We’ll cover topics such as pricing strategy, leveraging digital marketing techniques, utilizing promotional offers and discounts, creating partnerships with other organizations or businesses, and optimizing online booking processes.

By the end of it all, you’ll have a comprehensive plan for maximizing ticket sales for your tour or attraction!

1. Understanding Your Audience: Identifying Who You Need to Target

Before creating a strategy to increase ticket sales, it's critical to understand your target audience.

There are many different types of travelers, each with their own preferences – and identifying who you need to reach and what resonates with them will streamline the marketing messaging and promotional tactics.

For example, Gen-Z travelers are often tech-savvy and looking for experiences that are both authentic and unique. Backpackers are typically on a tight budget and looking for affordable and adventurous experiences.

Luxury travelers are willing to spend more money for a higher level of service and amenities. Solo travelers may prefer to explore independently, while families may prefer to book group tours or activities that are fun and educational for everyone.

To determine the target audience for your attraction, you can analyze factors such as:

  • Age group: What is the average age of your visitors? For example, Gen-Z travelers are more likely to be interested in social media and technology, while older travelers may be more interested in history and culture.
  • Budget: How much are your visitors willing to spend? Are they looking for a budget-friendly option or something more luxurious?
  • Travel destinations: Where do your visitors come from? Are they locals, or are they coming from out of town? Identifying the origin of your visitors helps you tailor your message to their needs and interests.
  • Culture: What are the cultural interests of your visitors? Are they looking for something culturally immersive, or are they more interested in leisure activities?
  • Other important demographics: What other factors are important to your visitors? Are they families with young children, or groups of friends?

Once you’ve identified your target audience, you can then create a marketing strategy that speaks directly to them. This will help ensure that your message resonates and that your tickets are seen by the right people.

2. Crafting A Compelling Website Optimized for Search Engine Success

In today's digital world, having a website is essential for any tourism business. However, having a website is no longer enough.

Your guests expect your website to be engaging, user-friendly, and designed with clear and appealing visuals and intuitive navigation. They want it to be easy to find the information they need to book tickets.

Optimize your website for mobile devices

More and more people are using their smartphones and tablets to access the internet, so it's important to make sure your website is optimized for mobile devices.

This means using a responsive design that will automatically adjust to fit any screen size. According to a study by Statista, mobile devices accounted for 58.33% of all global website traffic in the first quarter of 2023.

Furthermore, make sure your website loads quickly. Slow loading times can hurt your rankings in search engine results pages and negatively impact conversions. Google recommends a page load time of two seconds or less.

Use SEO best practices

In addition, your website should also be optimized for search engine success. This means that it should have the right keywords and content to make sure that it shows up in relevant searches.

For example, if you are targeting Gen-Z travelers, you’ll want to include keywords that are related to their interests such as “adventure tours,” “unique experiences,” and “eco-friendly travel.”

It also helps to have an SEO strategy in place and regularly update your website with fresh content and visuals. This will help boost search engine rankings and ensure that potential customers can easily find your attraction online.

Simplify your online booking process

One of the most important factors for your increasing ticket sales is making sure that your online booking process is as smooth and intuitive as possible.

This means having a secure payment system, easy steps to choose tickets, clear pricing information, and helpful customer service should any issues arise.

The goal is to make the entire process as simple and stress-free as possible so customers don’t have any hesitation when it comes to buying tickets.

(Explore our recent blog post on Optimizing Your Web Engine, where we discuss the six essential elements for successful online sales for tours and attractions. Read here to learn more.)

3. Utilizing the Right Ticketing Technologies and Social Media Platforms

If you have your website all set up, your next important step is to start leveraging the right ticketing technologies and social media platforms.

Choosing the right ticketing technology

The right technology can streamline your operations, automate processes, save time, and increase efficiency.

When you're first starting out, you may be taking your bookings over the phone or via email. But as your business grows, it's important to incorporate a ticketing technology platform.

The right booking system will allow you to:

  • Manage customers and bookings with ease
  • Engage with your customers before, during, and after their visit
  • Automate processes like payments, invoicing, and waivers
  • Track sales from a single source of inventory, whether it's online, in-person, phone, kiosk, POS, and OTAs
  • Manage your inventory, vendors, and sales channels all in one backend admin.
  • Connect seamlessly to OTAs for distribution channels

The ticketing technology you choose should be easy to use and able to scale with your business as it grows. It should also integrate seamlessly with your website and social media channels.

This will ensure that customers can easily book tickets online, and it will reduce the risk of errors and missed bookings.

It's important to note that we have all these features. If you're eager to find out how you can accomplish all this with RocketRez, arrange a demo with our experts today!

Social media for marketing and sales

In addition to your website, social media is also a powerful tool for increasing ticket sales.

With over 3 billion people using social media, platforms like Facebook and Instagram provide an easy way to your target audience and build relationships with potential customers.

By regularly posting engaging content and engaging with followers, you can create a community around your attraction. This will help drive more ticket sales as customers spread the word about your business.

You can also use social media to run targeted ads with offers or discounts for tickets. With RocketRez's root item capabilities, you can send users directly from an ad or social media post to a particular page with the offer you're promoting.

For example, if you're running a special promotion for summer events, you can embed the booking engine on your Summer Events page and have users start their buying journey from that item.

4. Crafting Unique Experiences That Appeal To Your Demographics

In the ever-evolving landscape of today's market, it's crucial to stand out by delivering experiences that truly speak to your target audience.

By designing one-of-a-kind, tailor-made, and exclusive encounters, you'll not only cater to the tastes of your demographic but also forge unforgettable memories for your visitors.

Let's explore some key strategies to make this happen:

1. Offer Personalized Experiences

Millennials are at the forefront of the experience economy, with a staggering 78% choosing to invest in experiences over material possessions. This paradigm shift has fuelled the rise of billion-dollar ventures like Uber, WeWork, and Airbnb.

A screenshot of the experiences offered in Tokyo on Airbnb's website. It shows the author's point about personalized experiences being key to increasing ticket sales.
Take a look at the experiences in Airbnb. They’re all catered to personalized, bespoke experiences that can be filtered by the price, language and time of day.

To tap into this lucrative trend, tours and attractions can harness customer data to curate bespoke experiences that cater to their audience's preferences.

By diving deep into their interests, habits, and aspirations, companies can craft events that exude a personalized touch, distinguishing them from rivals and fostering enduring relationships with their clientele. In fact, a study by Eventbrite reveals that 75% of millennials prioritize experiences over things.

2. Create Themed Experiences

Themed experiences have the power to offer truly distinctive and unforgettable visits for your guests. By carefully selecting themes that resonate with your target audience and complement your brand identity, you can craft immersive environments that capture the imagination and engage visitors on a deeper level.

These themes can take various forms, such as seasonal celebrations, cultural festivities, or even drawing inspiration from popular trends and current events. By keeping your finger on the pulse, you'll ensure a dynamic and exhilarating experience for your guests with each visit.

The screenshot of the hashtag Boo at the Zoo shows user-generated content from Boo at the Zoo, an example of a Halloween-themed zoo event.
An example of user-generated content on Instagram, featuring pictures from Boo at the Zoo, a Halloween-themed zoo event.

In addition to creating a buzz around your event, themed experiences can encourage repeat visits, as guests look forward to discovering new and exciting worlds within your venue. This approach also allows you to cater to different demographics and interests, broadening your appeal and attracting a diverse range of visitors.

Moreover, themed experiences offer an opportunity for collaboration with local artists, performers, and vendors, fostering a sense of community and further enriching the visitor experience.

3. Offer Exclusive Experiences

Fostering a sense of exclusivity and scarcity is a powerful strategy to drive demand and elevate ticket sales. By presenting limited-time experiences or VIP packages, you can pique the interest of potential visitors, enticing them to secure their tickets and generating excitement around your events.

These exclusive offerings can encompass a wide range of benefits, such as behind-the-scenes access that allows guests to explore areas typically unseen by the public, or premium seating that provides an unparalleled view of the action.

A young girl staring into a monkey exhibit at a zoo

Additionally, special perks like meet-and-greets with performers, priority entry, or personalized souvenirs can further enhance the experience, making attendees feel like esteemed members of an elite group.

Incorporating these elements not only adds value to the visitor experience but also encourages word-of-mouth marketing, as satisfied guests share their unique encounters with friends and family.

This heightened sense of prestige can also attract influencers and tastemakers, amplifying your reach and drawing in even more guests.

We've written about Why Exclusive Experiences are the Key to Unforgettable Visitor Attractions extensively, so read more about it here!

5. Developing Effective Email Marketing Strategies

Email marketing is a powerful tool for boosting your ticket sales. As one of the most direct forms of communication, it gives you an opportunity to directly reach your target audience and provide updates about upcoming events.

You can use email marketing to send promotional campaigns, discounts, and exclusive offers that will entice customers to reserve their tickets.

Additionally, personalized emails with customer segmentation can help foster relationships with your guests and facilitate repeat visits.

Including visuals and video content is an effective way to capture the attention of your subscribers, with recent studies showing that emails including videos can drive up to 300% more click-throughs than those without.

Moreover, using RocketRez's automations can streamline your email marketing campaigns by allowing you to set up timed messages for abandoned carts, pre-visit reminders and post-visit surveys.

Here are some essential steps to develop an effective email marketing strategy:

1. Build an Email List

Your email list is your most valuable asset when it comes to marketing. This is your direct line of communication with your guests, and you can collect it when they purchase tickets, register for an event, or subscribe to your mailing list.

By collecting contact information from visitors, you can deliver timely and relevant messages straight into their inboxes, furthering the conversation and urging customers towards a purchase.

Pictured above are some examples of what your email sign up forms can look like.

You can build your list by offering enticing incentives such as discounts, free guides or giveaways in exchange for signing up. Additionally, include sign-up forms and links to your email list on social media, website pages, and any other digital platform you use.

Here are some ideas for lead magnets to build your email list:

  • Free guide to planning the perfect visit
  • Discounted tickets for early booking
  • Exclusive access to digital content available only to members
  • Invitations to special events or promotional activities
  • Sneak peek at upcoming attractions and experiences

2. Segment Your Email List

Breaking down your list into smaller, segmented groups can help you deliver more tailored and effective messages. Applying customer segmentation allows you to tailor emails according to demographics, interests, purchasing behaviors, and other individual traits.

If you've done the work we talked about above, you can better engage with your guests by sending them only the content they're interested in and creating custom offers specifically targeted.

For instance, a Gen-Z traveler persona might be more drawn to exciting and unique sightseeing boat tour experiences, such as sunset cruises with live music or themed tours focusing on local history and legends.

On the other hand, a family on a group vacation could be seeking boat tours that cater to various age groups, featuring kid-friendly activities and engaging educational content.

An example of the types of cruises different personas would be interested in. Your personas could be very different from this!

In this case, you would consider promoting boat tours for the Gen-Z traveler featuring Instagram-worthy photo opportunities, chances to spot local wildlife, or collaborations with local environmental organizations to showcase your company's commitment to sustainability.

In contrast, for families, you would want to highlight boat tours that offer interactive games and onboard activities for children, as well as relaxing spots for parents to unwind and enjoy the beautiful scenery.

This email segmentation helps create a more intimate and personalized experience, as visitors receive only the content that truly interests them.

3. Craft Compelling Subject Lines and Content

Enticing subject lines and content play a crucial role in increasing the chances of your emails being opened and clicked.

Develop eye-catching subject lines that spark interest and encourage recipients to delve deeper into the email. Furthermore, tailor your content to cater to your audience's distinct needs and interests, building a solid relationship between your brand and your subscribers.

Let's continue with our example targeting Gen-Z travelers versus families.

For Gen-Z travelers, you could use subject lines such as:

  • "Experience Unforgettable Sunsets with Live Music on Our Cruise 🌅🎶"
  • "Discover Local Legends on Our Haunted History Boat Tour 🚢👻"

In your emails, you would also want to emphasize Instagram-worthy photo opportunities, chances to spot local wildlife, or collaborations with local environmental organizations to showcase your company's commitment to sustainability.

On the other hand, when targeting families, consider subject lines like:

  • "Family Fun Awaits: Interactive Boat Tours for All Ages 🚢👨‍👩‍👧‍👦"
  • "Explore the Ocean's Wonders with Our Educational Family Cruise 🌊🐬"

This would be your chance to highlight boat tours that offer interactive games and onboard activities for children, as well as relaxing spots for parents to unwind and enjoy the beautiful scenery.

6. Offering Discounts and Rewards Programs

Another effective way to increase ticket sales is to offer discounts, rewards and loyalty programs. It's a great incentive for customers to take action and purchase tickets as they will receive something in return – whether that be money off their next purchase or exclusive benefits.

You can also include referral rewards to encourage your existing customers to spread the word about your tour or attraction, and tap into their networks with an additional incentive.

Discounts can also be used to tackle slow periods or events when demand is low, driving more visitors to your tour or attraction and creating a sense of urgency that further encourages customers towards a purchase.

1. Create Urgency with Flash Sales

Flash sales have the power to generate a sense of urgency and scarcity, which can significantly impact demand and ticket sales. By offering time-sensitive discounts, you can capture the attention of potential visitors and persuade them to make prompt decisions about purchasing tickets for your tours and attractions.

For example, you could promote a "48-hour sale" with a 20% discount on tickets for a specific tour or attraction. This limited-time offer would encourage potential customers to act quickly to secure their spot before the promotion expires. You can also create themed flash sales around holidays or special events, such as a "Valentine's Day Couples Cruise" or a "Summer Solstice Sale."

To maximize the effectiveness of your flash sales, ensure that you communicate the offers through various channels, including email marketing, social media, and your website. Additionally, use eye-catching visuals and compelling copy to highlight the exclusivity and value of the deal.

2. Encourage Group Bookings through Discounts

Providing group discounts can inspire individuals to bring along friends and family members to experience your tours and attractions together. This not only increases ticket sales but also creates a more enjoyable atmosphere for your guests.

To make group bookings more attractive, implement tiered discounts that escalate with the size of the group, offering greater incentives for larger parties.

For instance, you could offer a 10% discount for groups of 5-10 people, a 15% discount for groups of 11-20 people, and a 20% discount for groups of 21 or more. This tiered structure encourages customers to invite even more people to join them, ultimately boosting your ticket sales.

Another example is to offer specialized group packages, such as "Family Packages" or "Corporate Outings," which include additional perks like priority access, a dedicated tour guide, or a group photo opportunity. These tailored packages can create a unique and memorable experience for your guests, fostering positive word-of-mouth marketing.

Promote your group discounts through various marketing channels, including social media, email campaigns, and your website. Additionally, you could make use of influencer marketing to reach a wider audience.

3. Strengthen Customer Loyalty with Rewards Programs

Developing a well-structured rewards program can motivate repeat customers and foster long-lasting customer loyalty. By offering enticing rewards such as discounts, complimentary tickets, or exclusive experiences, you encourage customers to continually choose your tours and attractions over competitors.

For example, you could create a points-based rewards system where customers earn points for every dollar spent on your tours and attractions. These points can then be redeemed for various rewards, such as discounted tickets, free upgrades, or behind-the-scenes access to exclusive events. This system encourages customers to accumulate points and continually engage with your business.

Another option is to offer a membership program with tiered levels of benefits. As customers reach higher tiers, they unlock more valuable perks, such as priority booking, special event invitations, or personalized tour experiences. This approach not only rewards loyal customers but also incentivizes them to strive for higher membership levels.

To further enhance your rewards program, consider partnering with local businesses to offer additional perks, such as discounted dining or accommodation options. This collaboration can attract more customers and provide a well-rounded experience that extends beyond your tours and attractions.

No matter which rewards program you choose, make sure it’s easy to understand and offers clear benefits for your customers. Promote the program through various marketing channels so that your customers can take advantage of the rewards.

7. Monitoring Your Performance with Analytics and Reporting Tools

As you try various methods to boost ticket sales, it's essential to keep track of how well they're working. By using analytics and reporting tools, you can examine your ticket sales data and see if your strategies are effective.

This way, you can focus on the successful approaches and make improvements to those that aren't performing as expected.

1. Optimize Your Online Presence with Website Analytics

Using website analytics is a great way to gain valuable insights into different aspects of your website, like traffic patterns, user behavior, and conversion rates. By examining this data closely, you can identify areas that need improvement and fine-tune your website for the best possible performance.

There are plenty of website analytics tools out there, each with their own unique features and benefits. For instance:

  • Google Analytics: This well-known tool gives you detailed info on visitor demographics, time spent on your site, most visited pages, and conversion rates. Plus, it helps you monitor your marketing campaigns' effectiveness and pinpoint the best traffic sources.
  • Hotjar: With this platform, you get visual representations of user behavior through heatmaps and session recordings. This helps you understand how visitors interact with your site and spot any potential issues or bottlenecks.
  • Semrush: This comprehensive platform tracks all of your website’s SEO metrics, such as domain authority, keyword rankings, organic search visibility, and more. It also helps you identify keyword opportunities that can help boost traffic to your site.

By using tools like these, you can gather important information about visitor demographics, time spent on your site, and popular pages, which will help you make smart decisions about your website's design and performance.

2. Measure Ticket Sales Performance with Reporting Tools

Keeping track of your ticket sales performance is essential for evaluating the effectiveness of your strategies and making data-driven decisions to boost revenue.

In RocketRez's Analytics dashboard, you can generate detailed reports that will show you key metrics like ticket sales volume, revenue generated, and the performance of your distribution channels.

These insights provide invaluable information for making strategic decisions to optimize the success of your tours and attractions. For instance, you can identify the channels with the highest conversion rates and focus on those when promoting tickets.

You can also examine trends in ticket sales by tracking data over time and identifying any patterns or changes. This will help you make informed decisions about pricing, promotions, marketing, and more.

Here are some other metrics you should track to measure your ticket sales performance:

  • Conversion Rate - This figure measures how many visitors actually purchase tickets. If it’s too low, it could indicate that your website isn’t optimized for conversions or your tickets are priced incorrectly.
  • Average Order Value - This tells you how much customers spend on average when they purchase tickets from you. If the figure is low, it could mean that customers aren’t interested in upgraded packages or add-ons.
  • Refund Rate - Tracking refund rates helps you understand how well your tours and attractions are performing. If the rate is too high, it could indicate that customers are unhappy with their experience or the experience didn’t meet their expectations.

Overall, tracking your ticket sales performance with analytics and reporting tools is key for improving your tours and attractions and making data-driven decisions. Not only can this help you identify areas for improvement, but it can also help you pinpoint successful strategies and focus your efforts on those.

If you’d like to learn more about how to maximize your ticket sales performance, be sure to check out our in-depth blog post on revenue management. It dives into all of the above aspects in detail and offers actionable tips to help you get the most out of your ticket sales.

8. Leveraging Partnerships and Networks to Reach More People

A highly effective strategy for selling more tickets for your tour or attraction is by cultivating partnerships and utilizing networks that can expand your reach to a broader audience.

In this section, we'll delve into specific ways to leverage these connections to enhance your visibility and increase ticket sales.

1. Collaborate with local businesses

Forming alliances with nearby hotels, restaurants, and shops can create win-win situations for all parties involved.

For example, you could partner with a local hotel to offer a package deal that includes accommodation and tickets to your attraction. This not only encourages visitors to explore the local area but also increases the chances of them choosing your experience.

2. Join industry associations

Becoming a member of relevant industry associations, such as local tourism boards or travel trade organizations, connects you with a network of professionals with similar interests.

These connections can lead to joint marketing efforts, referrals, and valuable insights that help grow your business. For instance, joining a regional tourism board might grant you access to promotional opportunities on their website or at travel expos.

3. Work with travel agents and tour operators

Travel agents and tour operators have extensive networks and client bases. By partnering with them, you can make your tour or attraction more accessible to potential customers who may not have discovered you otherwise.

For example, you could offer commission incentives to travel agents for promoting your attraction in their packages.

4. Participate in local events and festivals

Engaging in community events can raise awareness about your tour or attraction among locals and visitors alike.

Consider sponsoring a local food or music festival, offering special promotions during the event, or setting up an interactive booth to showcase your offerings. This exposure can lead to increased interest and ticket sales.

5. Leverage social media influencers

Collaborating with influencers who have a significant following in your target market can dramatically boost your visibility. For example, partner with a travel blogger or vlogger for a sponsored post or video featuring your attraction.

Offer them complimentary experiences or special deals in exchange for promoting your tour or attraction on their platforms.

6. Create strategic partnerships with complementary businesses

Identify businesses that offer complementary products or services and propose co-marketing initiatives or bundled packages. For example, you could partner with a local winery for a wine-tasting tour, combining your attraction with their product to create a unique experience.

This collaboration helps both parties reach new audiences and provides added value to customers.

By proactively leveraging partnerships and networks, you can extend your reach, increase brand awareness, and ultimately sell more tickets for your tour or attraction. Be sure to nurture these relationships and continuously explore new opportunities to amplify the advantages of your connections.

Key Takeaways

As you can see, creating a successful ticket sales strategy for tours and attractions requires juggling multiple factors. To achieve maximum success, you'll need an in-depth understanding of target customers, an optimized website with the right ticketing platform, and an exceptional guest experience that leaves your guests wowed.

It doesn't end there, however, as you'll also need to ensure you have all these other factors:

  • An effective email marketing strategy
  • Discounts and rewards programs
  • Up-to-date analytics and reporting tools
  • Comprehensive partnerships and networks

By following these steps, you can create an effective ticket sales strategy for your tour or attraction. With the right approach, you’ll be able to maximize your reach, increase your ticket sales performance, and ultimately achieve success.

We hope this guide serves as a helpful tool for designing an effective strategy for increasing ticket sales for your tour or attraction.

To find out if you're using the best tools at your disposal, why not consider booking a demo with RocketRez? Our experts will be able to provide you with a personalized demonstration of our ticketing software and show you how you can increase your ticket sales performance.

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Guest Experience
Geraldine Lee
Content Marketing Specialist