008: Using Your Website and Facebook to Increase Ticket Sales with Josh London

By August 1, 2016 July 29th, 2019 No Comments

Josh London talks about how to rank higher in search engines, how to build a better website to increase conversions, why you should use videos to promote your shows, and the best practices for Facebook ads.

Josh is a magician and entrepreneur. He has been performing magic since the age of 5 and travels the country performing for corporate and private events. He is also the founder of Click Convert Profit in which he coaches and consults with entertainers, performers, variety artists, bands and musicians who want to book more gigs.


WILLIAM: Today, I talked with Josh London, who is a magician and entrepreneur. He has been performing magic since the age of five and now travels the country performing for corporate and private events. He is also the Founder of Click Convert Profit in which he coaches and consults with entertainers, performers, variety artists, bands, and musicians who want to book more gigs.

In this episode, Josh talks about how to rank higher in search engines, how to build a better website to increase conversions, why you should use videos to promote your shows, and the best practices for Facebook ads and their tracking pixel.

So, let’s get into it.

Hey Josh! Thanks for joining us today.

JOSH: Thank you William, nice to be here.

WILLIAM: To start off, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and Click Convert Profit?

JOSH: Yeah. I’m a magician. I started out as a magician years ago and perform shows all throughout San Diego and all throughout the US. And then, about a year and a half, two years ago, I discovered that I have an ability to help other entertainers, performers and variety artists book their gigs online using digital marketing like building better websites, search engine optimization, running advertising, and now I’m a consultant and coach and trainer for other entertainers and performers.

WILLIAM: Can we talk a little bit about SEO? You mentioned that briefly. Can you explain what that is and how people can use that?

JOSH: Yeah. SEO is search engine optimization. When you go to sites like Google or Yahoo and you type in whatever you want to look for, in our case it would be theatre tickets, so someone would type in “upcoming performances” or they’ll even type in your theatre name and you get a list of results. You could even type in “vacuum” and you’ll get a list of results.

And on that results page, there are organic listings, which are not paid for, and then there are non-organic listings, which are paid for. The organic listings are free, so they’re obviously the cheaper route to go, but they take longer to get on the first page of Google. And if you have keywords and terms that your customers and users are searching for that are highly competitive, it’s going to be harder to get on the first page of Google. So, it’s the difference between organic listings and non-organic listings where you’d be buying an ad.

WILLIAM: So, if I were just to start building a website or if I’m trying to improve my website, what would be some suggestions to do to help me rank a little bit higher on Google, Bing, or Yahoo?

JOSH: The first suggestion would be to have your website be mobile-friendly. And the reason you want a mobile-friendly website is because 75% of consumers online that do research or purchase or just surf the internet, they’re on their mobile device, you know, iPhones or Android device or even iPads and tablets.

You want your website to be able to display to them properly so that it resizes to their screen. My iPhone 6+ screen is going to be a different size than my wife’s iPhone 6 screen. I’m going to have a bigger screen so you want your website to be able to respond properly so that your information can be displayed to the user and tell them about whatever show you’re selling.

Make it easy for them to find the purchase tickets button and then, throughout the whole buying process, adding it to their carts, or updating the number of tickets they want, or choosing the seating. You want that to be as easy as possible.

Whenever you introduce something online and it makes it difficult for a user to do, they won’t complete the action. So, if you have a difficult buying process, it’s going to make the user leave your website and not purchase tickets.

WILLIAM: Now, does Google actually look at whether or not your site is optimized for mobile?

JOSH: Yes, they do. They do look at that and you could run this little test on your own phone to see what websites are mobile-friendly. If you type in any keyword, let’s say “vacuum” into Google on your mobile device, you’ll see right underneath the title, the blue part that’s linked, you’ll see mobile-friendly. And that will indicate to the user or the searcher that that site is mobile-friendly.

Sites that are not mobile-friendly don’t have that and they’re very rarely shown in organic search. You can still get to their website from your mobile device but it might not display properly, the text might be too big or too small to read on the device, and it just doesn’t create a good experience for the user.

WILLIAM: And if once again, I was building a website from scratch or if I’m redesigning my website, what kind of links would you suggest having on the website?

JOSH: Very descriptive simple links that people are used to seeing. People on a website are used to seeing the Home link, the Home button. They’re used to seeing About. They’re used to seeing, if you’re selling tickets to the theatre, they would probably want to see something like Shows or Upcoming Appearances.

If you’re using links on your website that aren’t descriptive, you’re going to have problems when your users get to your site because they’re looking for the information as fast as possible. They really want to find what they’re looking for or they will leave and you want to offer that as fast as possible on your website.

So, something like, if you offer a support system on your website or a chat box, that would be helpful. If someone has a quick question, they can click the Support tab. That would help. Contact page would help as well.

WILLIAM: And is there a limit to how many links on the navigation bar you should have? Because I’ve seen some with maybe two or three links, like a Home, About Us, Buy Tickets. And then, I’ve seen other that have five, ten, fifteen links up there because they’re trying to segment every single part of their website out. Is there a right way or a wrong way to do that?

JOSH: Building a website and marketing online is a lot like building a house. So, we could take the same question and ask, “Is there a limit to the number of floors I can have on my house?” Well, yes and no, but why would you have 15 floors to a house, you know?

Don’t do something on your website, don’t add a page on your website unless it’s critical because the goal of the website and the goal of your business is to sell. You want that website to sell. Now, there needs to be a certain process and flow and funnel for someone to be able to buy from you, to go from A to B and in between that, you have all these different steps.

First, before they even get to your website, they have to know who you are so they get into your funnel. Then, they have to learn about the performances–what is coming up, what they’d be interested in, what kind of show it is. Then, they have to go check if they even have the date available. Then they have to go buy the ticket and you have to make it real easy for them. But, there is no limit to the number of pages that you have on your website or you have showing in your navigation.

Just keep in mind that the user is the reason that you have a website. So, if you’re thinking I’m going to have hundreds of different pages on my website and they don’t speak to users and they don’t answer the user’s questions, you’re not going to sell anything, so it’s not worth it.

WILLIAM: I see. I think that makes a lot of sense. You briefly mentioned that the goal of the website is to sell. Is it better to try to sell those tickets or get people who would come to the show first or is it better to try to get their email first, or would you say try and get their email and then sell to them later? What kind of funnel or what kind of process would you recommend on building a website, maybe have the option for them to join the mailing list and buy tickets is more of a priority? Which way would you go?

JOSH: You would obviously have a pop-up form when they’re leaving like an exit pop-up form to capture their email address or a form for their email address in the sidebar because people are used to getting updates. People want to give you their email address so they can stay informed about the latest events. So, yes, have that.

As far as the flow of the website and what it should be, that depends on what you’re selling. If you are a theatre company and you have shows every single week and they’re all different times, once I land on your website, I want to see a page or very quickly, upcoming shows or a calendar page with all your shows and all your listings.

Then, on the calendar page, I find the day and time that I want or even the show that I want. And once I get to the page about the show, I want to find a little bit more information. So, I want to see reviews. I want to see what other people, national reviews, even local people have said about the show.

I want to read Twitter. I want to read tweets about the show. So, you could have a Twitter widget in there. You’re going to have all these different stuff in there, but the thing to keep in mind is that people are 70% sold before they even buy.

We can take that and keep in mind and realize that for ourselves that we do the same things. If I’m buying a vacuum or something online, I’m going to first do a ton of research. I’m going to go on Amazon and I’m going to go on their mobile app and I’m going to look at the reviews. I’m going to look at the questions that people have submitted.

I’m going to, then, start comparing different vacuums–Oreck versus Dyson. And I’m going to read reviews online. I’m going to read the latest reviews. I’m going to watch videos online. I’m going to do all these research online before I even make a purchase. And, that’s for a vacuum. The same goes for a $10 ticket.

People are going to do all kinds of research before they even buy from you. So, the more information that you can give them about the show or about you or anything about your theatre company or a program that makes it interesting, the better, because people want to do business with people they know, like, and trust. And you can only do that when you’re giving as much information about the show or the company as possible.

WILLIAM: So, how would making a video come into play and adding that to the website? Is that something that you highly suggest people do, maybe take a little video of maybe the theatre itself, maybe the actors, maybe a small little segment of the play if that’s allowed, and then putting that up online? Is that something you would suggest?

JOSH: Oh, definitely, yeah, yeah. I’d suggest that. Also, if they have a dress rehearsal, like grab some people that saw the show as they leave. And you could even do this on your phone if it has a video camera on it, and just get little reviews of what people thought of the show as they’re leaving. And you can add that to your YouTube page.

You should have a YouTube page on your website and add that to it because it’s offering, again, more information about the show. If I went to a page and about a show and all it was, let’s say Mary Poppins, and all it was was a three sentence little summary about it, I wouldn’t be too interested in it.

We all know what Mary Poppins is, but a show that’s lesser known, if they have a three sentence summary, that doesn’t give me much information. But, if I have a couple of paragraphs and then, some reviews of people actually standing outside your theatre, and you can get really smart and put your banner of your theatre right behind them. So, have them standing in front of your banner and shoot video. You know, that’s going to do a lot more good for your ticket sales than the little short summary.

WILLIAM: And I guess you can post these videos on other social media like Facebook. And I’ve heard, and maybe you can help me out with this, but I’ve heard that if you have a video on Facebook, people stop and actually will read that or watch that more than if it’s just a blank wall of text.

JOSH: Yeah, yeah. You definitely have people on Facebook. I mean, that’s where a lot of people spend their time is hanging out with their friends on Facebook or if they’re standing in line waiting for the movies or whatever, they’ll go on Facebook. So, you can definitely incorporate Facebook into your marketing for the show.

So, there’s a couple of different ways to get into that with our website where you can actually target ads with Facebook and you can even incorporate videos into the ads. Facebook is a great way to market and get people to your website and it usually costs about a dollar or so, probably less, maybe fifty cents or a dollar to sell ad space or to get ads on Facebook.

WILLIAM: Talking about ads, if I were to start, once again coming from scratch, I know nothing about Facebook ads, what would you say that I should do because sometimes I see that Boost Post on my page that I can try to boost this and get other people seeing what I just posted? What do you suggest that I do if I have a video that I just took of some great testimonials and I want to get other people to see this and come to my show? How would I go about doing that?

JOSH: There are a couple of steps that you need to take in order to do it the right way. You certainly can boost the post and that’s a great way to do it. Let’s say you just got this video and you just shot it for the Mary Poppins show and you want to put it on your theatre company’s Facebook page. So, you go on your phone. You boost the post. Everyone knows how to do that. Go on your ads section and hit Boost Post. You can set the amount that you want to spend. You could spend however much you want, so $100 over the next week or so, and you’ll spend that $100.

Now, will that result in sales? Probably not. The majority of that advertising in the digital space, there’s two forms. There’s broad advertising and then, targeted advertising. And what we’re selling here, we’re selling something that’s very targeted and focused in niche. So, you have to have some control of your website.

I build websites on WordPress on secure servers. That’s how I build websites. And you can do this on other websites, but it’s a little bit more difficult or it might have a bit more tough time with it. The first thing you’re going to do is get your Facebook Pixel. And I think with WellAttended, do they offer the Facebook Pixel?

WILLIAM: Yes, we do. We have a space that they can insert that code, which I believe helps with retargeting.

JOSH: Awesome. Yeah, yeah, they do. The Facebook Pixel is the thing that you want to get and it’s good that WellAttended has it because what you’re going to do is take that Pixel–and it’s just a little piece of code–and you copy it from your Facebook ads and you paste it in your website. You only need to do that once.

And what happens is when you go and search for, let’s say, vacuums again, you’re Amazon and you’re looking at vacuums and then you leave Amazon’s website and you’re searching around another website or you’re on Facebook, have you ever seen the ads for the same vacuum that you were looking at in your newsfeed?

WILLIAM: Yeah, all the time.

JOSH: That’s what retargeting is. So, what’s happening is Facebook is tracking what website you’re visiting and your cookies are telling Facebook by way of this tracking Pixel what websites you’re visiting so you can deliver targeted ads to people. Now, how can we use this to sell tickets?

WILLIAM: So, just one moment. So, that means, let’s say I’m on a website and I somehow get to the ticketing page to buy tickets, and then, let’s say, leave and I don’t buy tickets. And now, I’m back on Facebook, I’m going to see ads for that same show because I was just on your ticketing site, is that correct?

JOSH: Yeah, yeah, and that’s one way you can do it. So, if I went and I’m looking at Mary Poppins at your theatre and I looked at the page for Mary Poppins and I leave, but then, a couple of hours later, even a day later, I’m on Facebook and I’m scrolling through, and I see your theatre company that your Facebook page pop up and you’ll see these ads there. They say “Sponsored” right underneath the name of the company and I see a review of Mary Poppins right outside your theatre. That’s targeted.

You know, that’s a targeted ad towards me and it’s doing a couple of things. The first thing is it’s reminding me that I was looking at Mary Poppins tickets and “Oh, yeah, I just remembered, I should go buy tickets for my anniversary.” Then, the second thing is if it reminds me, I might just click the link to follow through and finish the purchase. And you can get real smart and put in abandoned cart email marketing, which is a really good thing to do.

WILLIAM: Yeah, we have that on our site.

JOSH: Oh, you do! Awesome. So, yeah, WellAttended does that as well. If someone gets into your website and they put tickets into their shopping cart but they leave, not only can you do Facebook marketing and advertising with WellAttended’s Facebook Pixel, you can also do shopping cart abandonment.

So, they’ll get an actual email that says, “Hey Josh. We saw you put this Mary Poppins tickets in your cart. You can go finish the purchase now.”

WILLIAM: Yeah. And that’s a great way, we think, to really help increase your sales because they’re getting that email and they’re already interested in it and it’s no extra work for you.

JOSH: Yeah.

WILLIAM: So, is there anything else that you can maybe any tips or tricks with Facebook ads that you could maybe explain?

JOSH: Yeah. One of the biggest ones is don’t get too creepy. And by that, I mean, with Facebook, you have the tools at your disposal to target someone so specifically it could look like you’re speaking directly to the person.

With Facebook, you can target people that work at specific companies. You can target people that liked pages, specific pages on Facebook. And if you get too close for comfort, it feels a little strange.

WILLIAM: So, for example, if I wanted to–let’s say Microsoft–if I wanted to get their company to buy a block of tickets to my show, I could say, “Target employees at Microsoft” and I want to send them this ad that says, “Hey, want to have fun with your employees? Purchase tickets to our shows,” and then I could send that ad directly to people that work at Microsoft.

JOSH: Yeah, you can. And you can even offer a discount for Microsoft employees. So, you can create an ad that is targeted for Microsoft employees and it says 10% off. You can put on the ad, “For Microsoft employees only, 10% off.”

WILLIAM: That’s really impressive.

JOSH: Yeah. So, you can do that. There’s any number of ways you can advertise online and Facebook is one of the best ways to do it because you’re not only reminding people that you exist, you’re also asking for the sale at the same time.

WILLIAM: And that’s really personal, too, because people are on their Facebook to talk with friends or to see what things are going on in their lives, so I think that’s really a personal touch with that ad that you’re not going to get on Google or other platforms.

So, to kind of wrap this up, do you have one marketing technique that event producers can do today to increase their sales?

JOSH: Yeah. Add more content to your website. Add more content about your shows. I’ve seen a number of theatre companies or websites. There’s not enough information about the show. I want to learn about the actors. I want to learn who these people are. Where did they go to school? Tell me about that.

All the information that’s in the playbill, put that on your website. Just type it up and put it in your website and do it for each of your shows because people want to learn about you. They want to learn about your theatre. They want to learn about its history. They want to learn about the owners.

We want to do business with people we know, like, and trust, and the only way to do that online is if you publish this information to your website. So, adding more content and content that matters, you know, backstage content. How long does it take to strike a set or put a set up? How do you even make a set? Shoot a video of that and put it online, and people will take interest. It might not be a ton of people but people will take interest and those people that are interested, those people are going to buy tickets and they’re also going to generate word-of-mouth referrals for your theatre.

WILLIAM: Awesome. How can we keep up with you and Click Convert Profit?

JOSH: You could go to my website, that’s clickconvertprofit.com and you can read about me there, read my blog posts, and watch my videos. You can also check me out on Facebook. There will be a link on the website for that to join my Facebook group.

WILLIAM: Hey, thanks so much, Josh, for coming on the show.

JOSH: Thank you, William, for having me.

Show Notes:

Click Convert Profit
Magician for Private Parties and Corporate Events
San Diego Magician Josh London

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