Imagine founding an expo that draws in 11,000 attendees at its first event. Then, imagine successfully expanding that expo to eight cities, all in the same year. Sound like a stretch?
In fact, that’s the true story of The Yoga Expo, a gathering that draws yoga and wellness professionals from around the world. Founded by Kyle Michaud in January of 2016, the expo rapidly expanded nationwide — but not without growing pains.
From their first event, The Yoga Expo felt the stress of an inflexible ticketing system, limited insight into their sales, and difficulty sourcing exhibitors and vendors.
> To make even small adjustments to their event page, Michaud’s team needed to request the change through their ticketing provider. This created frustrating, unnecessary cycles and long turnaround times — each change required 24 to 48 hours to complete.
> Key performance metrics were impossible to measure — especially over time and across events. This made it difficult for Yoga Expo to know which marketing campaigns were most effective, or whether additional campaigns were needed.
> Finally, as The Yoga Expo grew, the team found themselves dedicating large amounts of their limited time to finding and securing exhibitors and vendors. Given their fast growth — and plans to expand even further the following year — Michaud and his team had no time to waste.
So how did The Yoga Expo stretch across the nation? Michaud, who personally oversees all of the event’s operations, sales, and marketing, sought out technology to work the kinks out of their event operations.
After evaluating multiple solutions, The Yoga Expo chose Eventbrite to help achieve their 3 main goals:
> Reach within a larger audience of exhibitors, to help them keep growing year after year
> Real-time visibility into event performance, making planning easy to optimize
> Flexibility to embed branded ticketing widgets into their own website, giving attendees a consistent experience from the moment of purchase
Sponsors and exhibitors are a vital source of revenue (and therefore growth) for The Yoga Exp. Because of this, Michaud himself often takes on the time-consuming responsibility of sourcing new partners. But time is limited, and the team has many competing business priorities.
To reach a large network of qualified business leads with less effort, Michaud relies on Eventbrite’s network. Through Eventbrite, the The Yoga Expo ticketing page is posted to a larger network of event listings, helping it reach a larger audience. “I get at least 2 emails a day from people who found us through Eventbrite, which is potentially $2,000 – $3,000 in revenue,” says Michaud. “It’s incredible.”
To meet revenue goals, The Yoga Expo makes it a top priority to stay on top of ticket sales with their Eventbrite reporting. “In just one click, I can see when the majority of ticket holders purchased tickets,” says Michaud.
Michaud also uses the data to properly set his exhibitors’ expectations. “Through Eventbrite, we can see that 70% of tickets are purchased just two weeks in advance. So when exhibitors ask us how sales are going early on, we can share this and give them peace of mind,” he says.
Eventbrite helps give peace of mind not only to exhibitors, but also to Michaud’s team. They use Eventbrite’s real-time data to gain a deeper understanding of where sales are coming from, both by city and by marketing campaign. To track the ROI of each advertising partner and social media influencer, they use unique discount codes, easily created on Eventbrite. For example, The Yoga Expo gives each Facebook influencer a unique $5 discount code, so they can see who’s driving the most sales.
To expand to nine locations in just a few months, The Yoga Expo needed a system that made ticketing set-up easy to brand, replicate, and adjust on the fly. “In the past, to make any changes to our ticketing page, we had to go through our ticketing provider. Now, we have everything at our fingertips, which is incredibly valuable,” says Michaud.
“Now, we have everything at our fingertips, which is incredibly valuable.”
— Kyle Michaud Founder, The Yoga Expo
Michaud is now able to instantly make changes to their ticketing page on his own, whenever he wants. This includes cloning new ticketing pages, adding custom branding, and embedding a ticket widget directly onto their website.
With the right technology in place, Michaud now has the time to focus on what’s important: growing the The Yoga Expo experience worldwide.
“We want to use our energy to keep improving the event experience, rather than searching for potential vendors. Eventbrite can help with this, because it increases the visibility of our exhibitor opportunities to more health and wellness companies across the nation,” says Michaud. With their current rapidfire expansion, it looks like The Yoga Expo isn’t about to slow down anytime soon.