Yesterday I spent the day helping a photographer friend at our kids high school. He has the contract to take the I.D. / yearbook photos for all 1,300 students. This was a big job. While I was there for the day, I had the opportunity to think about the buying power of today’s teens. Retail is really good at marketing to this group but what about all of us in the live event & entertainment business?
High school teens are the biggest spender of discretionary dollars. Our business is all about the discretionary dollar. Are we doing a good job marketing to this group? Based on the marketing I see in our industry I would say not very well.
Today’s teens are the trendsetters. They not only tell us what is hot now, they are also great predictors of the future. They love to spend money and will do so in a heartbeat. Yesterday, the video game NHL 2011 came out. My son and his friend went right after school to buy it. Did they really need it that day? To them, the answer was yes! “They have to have it”! How do we tap into that way of thinking with our marketing efforts? This week would have been a good week to market NHL tickets to teens and young adults. Nice cross promotion, don’t you think?
As event marketers, we are good at doing surveys and focus groups. The problem is we tend to focus these efforts to adults. Teens are not good subjects for this traditional marketing research. We need to get into their world and ask them directly. Maybe this is through the web and social networking? Maybe we need to work with the schools? How about dealing with the retailers they buy from? Live entertainment and fashion always go well together. Forget about just getting retail sponsorship. How about a good retail promotion?
If we are really trying to put more butts in seats and make money doing it, then we need events that the largest discretionary dollar market will spend their money on. What are you doing to reach them?