With event promotion, efforts are often focused on social media strategies, paid advertising and even older-school techniques like flyering. But, despite being an incredibly powerful tool to have in your marketing arsenal, one type of promo that often gets overlooked is SEO (search engine optimisation).
For those unfamiliar with the term, SEO refers to a series of actions you can take to give a website or particular web page the best possible chance of appearing in people’s internet search feeds. Moz has a great introductory article to SEO if you’re interested in learning more.
Why bother with SEO for event pages?
By carrying out a few relatively simple tasks, you’ll increase the chance of your event page appearing when someone searches for something similar (e.g. “underground music gigs New York” or “comedy shows near me”).
Improving your event page’s SEO means putting it in front of a wider audience. Even better than that, it means landing it in front of people who are actively searching for an event just like yours, making it all the more likely that they’ll buy tickets.
Let’s get started.
Tasks you can carry out to improve your event page’s SEO
Research keywords and key phrases
The first step in any SEO strategy is to discover what people are searching in relation to your offering. There are tons of free tools you can use to carry out keyword research, which will enable you to figure out what keywords you want to appear for in search engines. Say, for example, you run a comedy club in LA. Your keywords might be things like: ‘Best comedy clubs in LA’, ‘Fun things to do in LA’ and ‘Where to watch live comedy LA’.
Include your keywords naturally throughout your event page
Now that you have keywords, make sure you use them throughout the description on your event page – but don’t force it. Using a handful of keywords just once each can make a huge difference, but over-using them will probably damage your chances of ranking well in search engine results pages.
Don’t skimp on the word-count for your event page description
Google and other search engines value great content, so just posting a couple of lines about your event probably won’t be enough to show them you mean business.
Aim to write a few good paragraphs at least for your event page description to help search engines see it as valuable, relevant content. Doing this will also give you more space to use your keywords naturally.
Include keywords in headers on your event page
Using keywords in headings can help flag to search engines that your page is relevant to the users that are searching them. On Ticket Tailor, when you’re editing your page, make use of the ‘heading 2’ format for all of your subheadings, as this then means they’ll actually flag as headings to Google (rather than if you were to just bold them). You only need to use heading 2's for all of your main subheadings, then if you have headings under those sections, you’d use headings 3, 4, 5 etc. You can read more about that here.
Post your event page across all your social media channels
Even if you don’t get much traction on social media, or have many followers, you should still be posting your event page across all the platforms you use. Search engines like to see event listings being posted on social media as it flags to them that it’s an active event (aka, one that’s in the pipeline, not one from years gone by).
Find free places to list your event – here are some to get started
Search engines value pages that have been linked to from various sources across the web (as long as the sources are relevant and legit). The good news is there are lots of great free ways to start building up your event page’s link profile.
For this step, do some research to find some relevant, free places to list your event – doing so means you’ll be building up a good profile of links from other websites to your event page.
Some good places to start include:
Find local places to list your event
When looking for places to list your event, don’t forget to go local too. Most regions will have a website you can list your event on – and some have many. For example, Visit Kent, Visit Florida, Visit CT (Connecticut)... you get the picture!
Utilise Lyft Ride to give guests a free ride to your event (and get your event listed)
Lyft offers a great feature that lets you offer a free ride to attendees of your event. You set a budget per ride you’re happy with, then if a guest uses less than this, the leftover money goes back into your account. When you do this, Lyft will also list your event on their site – giving your event page another valuable backlink. And if you don’t want to pay for rides, you could simply add the cost of this onto your ticket price for one of your ticket types (e.g. Ticket + ride costs an extra $10).
List your event on your Linktree account (...get a Linktree account if you don’t have one!)
You know how Instagram only lets you put one link in your bio? Linktree was designed specifically to get around that problem – all you need to do is create an account then start listing the links you want people to be able to access from your social media channels.
By placing your unique Linktree link into your Instagram bio, you direct people to the multiple links you want them to have access to. Listing your event on your Linktree account is another small but valuable step for improving your event SEO.
Link to your event page from your own website
If you have a website for your event, or your own personal website (or both), be sure to link to your actual event page from it/them.
Create a short, simple video about your event and upload to YouTube with a link your event page in the description
You don’t need to be a pro to create a short, snappy video for your event. You could, for example, use a platform like Canva to create a super-short animated video giving key details about your event (no design knowledge required). Or you could film a quick interview with one of your key performers/speakers. The important part is to upload your video to YouTube and link to your event page in the description.
Do one last check for easy linking opportunities
Make sure you haven’t missed any linking opportunities – do a quick inventory check of all the social and digital platforms you use to make sure you’ve listed your event every place possible. For example, it might be relevant to cite your event on less obvious forums or membership sites that you’re a part of.
Do a bit of digital PR – reach out to the local online press and blogs
Finally, if you’ve got any time to spare, it can be valuable to reach out to the local online press and/or blogs to see if they’d be interested in doing a piece on your event. They may, for example, be keen to do a written interview with you, in which case you’d get some great exposure for your event plus a high-quality link to your event page (news sites are often seen as really valuable by search engines, so links from them carry more weight). The same goes for popular blogs with a decent readership.
By carrying out the above steps, you’ll boost your event page’s SEO, making it all the more likely it’ll show up in search engine results when people are browsing for events like yours. And the only thing you’ll have to invest in this particular marketing strategy, is time. Good luck!