Your website can be one of your most effective marketing tools
When many of your most effective marketing methods are digital (email, social media), your website should act as the hub for all your online activity. It’s the place you’ll keep sending people to for information about the events you’re offering, the e-news you want them to sign up for, breaking news about your season launch, and behind the scenes interviews with artists. It should be all there, and easy to find and navigate around.
Most importantly, it should be integrated with your ticketing system so that online ticket purchase is as easy as possible. It should be optimised for search engines so that it’s easy to find for people entering a range of different search terms into their browser.
Some arts centre websites are pages ‘buried’ rather deep inside a larger local council website. This is not ideal, and you should make it a mid to long-term aim to have your own unique URL, but it can still be made to work as long as you can link directly to your pages and your ticketing interface.
The role of your website and online ticketing
Aim for no more than 3 clicks between landing on the home page and getting to ticket purchase: if there are more, tell people ‘this is a six-step process’ at step one. Manage expectations about how long it will take to get to the ticket purchase function.
Your website should act as a ‘hub’ for your online activity, with all your social media such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter integrated:
Use YouTube event teasers on your website
Ask people to ‘like’ and ‘share’ event pages on your website via a Facebook plug-in
Invite people to tweet and share about events on your website via a Twitter plug-in
Provide direct links from your email copy to events ticket purchase screens (or as close as you can get)
Include your website URL in all print copy: poster, flyer, direct mail, newspaper ads, media releases.