Anyone who sells group tickets for a living has lists. These lists are for different demographics. It can be schools, churches, seniors, military, etc… But do you have a list of bus companies?
If you sell groups for a venue then you should be on a first name basis with all the local bus and tour operators. They are a valuable resource and revenue source for your efforts. Think about this, every time you sell one bus group, you sold 50 tickets. A bus is truly a group sale.
Bus companies are in the business of filling seats and running the buses. They are just like you. You are in the business of filling seats and running the venue, show, or event. What a perfect marriage. Many bus companies have their own sales departments. These sales people are always looking for ways to sell seats on their bus. If you put together a deal with them, they will act as an additional sales force for you. They have access to all the outside groups and conventions that come to your city. Don’t you want to tap into that?
Sit down with your local tour operators and put together a package. Remember that the package has to include the bus ride. You may have to discount your ticket more then “normal” to make the package attractive. Don’t think “normal”. Nothing in this business is normal. When we get stuck in the “standard”, “normal”, “that is how it is always done” mode we are going down the wrong road. Put together a package that works!
If you can, join the American Bus Association. This will give you access to all bus and tour operators in the country. This might work great if you have a national tour going out. It also works well for sports teams, permanent or unique events. You would be surprised how many national bus operators plan trips to your city. They are always looking for stuff to do in your town. Why shouldn’t you be a part of it?