Knowing your demographic is the first order of business for any nightclub and bar owner. If you don’t know who to market to, not only can the promotion fall apart but also so can the venue’s brand.
First and foremost, owners need to realize that all events are unique and will have a specific clientele, explains Sameer Qureshi, CEO of New York City-based Royale Marketing, which has work worked with nightclub clients including Dream, Ava and Gansevoort.
Royale works with myriad types of clients and each marketing plan is different and specific to each one. Targeting the demographic you want at the promotion is based on what the event is. “We study the market to understand both the demographics and psychographics of our target audience, says Qureshi.
Niche marketing, he says, is “extremely important” to any venue looking to attract an influx of clients, who are interested in what you're presenting. First, however, owners need to define who their target demographic is. But this can only be done if owners understand the event their hosting. Effectively marketing to consumers means targeting them with products they actually want, he adds.
Once the demographic is defined, Qureshi uses his resources to create a meaningful impact for the client hosting the event. “When we market an electronic dance music event versus a jazz festival, they require completely different marketing strategies,” he says.
After the owner defines the event and the demographic, he or she has to figure out what outlet to market to, which comes down to what areas of the event the owner wants to make prominent and discuss. “An EDM blog might be the best way to promote an EDM party but a Facebook campaign might be the quickest way for you to get traction for a weekly event,” he says. “We really cater each marketing strategy based on the product.”
Qureshi says it’s important to understand the market and meet with others to discuss ideas. Sometimes it’s good to market to different demographics, but only pursue it if it works with the event.
While some demographics are easy to identify, other events require deeper research. Owners shouldn’t write off a group because it doesn’t initially fit into that specific niche. Royale was recently hired to put together a brunch event for a Michelin-star restaurant. Party brunches are growing in popularity and its reach spans to the “demographic that attends brunches for the atmosphere.” That was easy enough for Qureshi and his team to define, but he knew they were leaving out another niche demographic. Foodies, too, would be interested in attending the event from a client that is known for their high-end food experience. Royale devised a strategy to target both niche segments that will "easily coexist within our concept,” he says.
Because a niche can be so specific and so small, owners may feel as though their efforts are being ignored. But Qureshi says “not letting a project mature” especially with niche marketing is the biggest mistake owners can make. “With niche marketing you are not reaching out to the masses. You are targeting a certain client and that requires traction to be built over time and not overnight,” he says.