A lot of people do not understand the power of online marketing, of good site design, and how to leverage all the Web 2.0 ideas to help your bottom line. This is a bit of a problem in more rural settings I find and a prime example is the unfortunate lack of development on the Salmon Festival website.
The Exploits Valley Salmon Festival has been running in my hometown for 23 years and has attracted some of the biggest acts in Canadian music. It has played host to bands like Great Big Sea, the Doobie Brothers, I Mother Earth, Nelly Furtato, and Bryan Adams to name a few. While the town is willing to spend money on the concert, and rightfully so, they seem unwilling to spend money on any development of a web presence.
I use the term web presence instead of website because in todayâ€™s marketplace it is much more than just a static site with a few pictures, it is an experience. An event with an established history like Salmon Fest should be willing and able to do more than a site developed in 1998. This is part of their marketing tool and a valuable tool when deployed properly.
Compare the online presence of Ozzfest or Lollapalooza to that of Salmon Fest. You will see a more interactive site that matches the themes of the event, the music and the bands. It makes the visitor more interested in the concert and when done right can make them feel included. A great site to gauge how this works is the Salmon Fest 2007 Facebook group that blossomed at just over 2000 users who were sharing stories, pictures, and talking about this years lineup.
A festival site could include a blog from the organizers talking about the developments happening in the planning of the next concert. They could use it to even start a few rumors to get people talking about show. Toss in a podcast with a few people talking about it and you have an audio or video stream to each of your fans. I could even imagine listening to a podcast and having the organizers invite the bands booked to play to promote the show on the podcast. These are just a few of the possibilities a company, festival event, or organization can employ to constantly attract attention to their bottom line. In this example, it would be ticket sales.
These are just a few of the things to consider when putting together your next web presence.