Spotlight – The Small World Music Festival

Spotlight - The Small World Music Festival

Small World Music

Aline Morales performs at the Small World Music Festival

This week Toronto Canada is home to Small World Music Festival’s 11th Annual Fall Festival. The event, taking place over 11 nights, will feature more than 30 artists performing music from 10 countries - a textbook definition of cultural diversity if there ever was one.

Rich cultural diversity is the centerpiece of Small World Music’s success. ThunderTix is proud to part of that success by being their ticketing software of choice. In this spotlight we’ll look at the different aspects of the event, including how well the event founders make use of social media for event promotion and awareness.

Why do we blog this? In addition to online ticketing, we share the methods and tools of our customers so your event can benefit from their knowledge. This example also serves as a reference standard for nonprofits wishing to increase their donations made during the ticket purchase.

Success Through Diversity

The Small World Music Festival is a celebration of diversity in music and culture held every year across multiple venues and locations in Toronto Canada. The mission of the festival is to bring appreciation of different cultures while entertaining all in attendance through shows, workshops, and community togetherness. From the website:

Small World is a celebration of cultural diversity expressed by one of the most potent tools available – music. It is based on a vision of sharing cultural experience and ultimately, building bridges between cultures through this experience. It is about discovery and ‘opening ears’. In this role, the company has presented many Canadian and Toronto debuts by international performers; has given a platform to dozens of developing Canadian artists of various backgrounds; and has presented innovative, risk-taking programming that uniquely represents Canada and Toronto.

The festival is actually an international cultural event with events in several nations around the world throughout the year. This week is the Fall Festival instances, and it is one of the most popular. Past performances have included  Indian dub step Darth Veda. This year’s Toronto lineup includes Fanfare Ciocărlia and Aline Morales.

As a gage of the events success, one only needs to read the glowing reviews of past Small World Music Festivals. One recent review was of Azalea Ray, who is also performing later this week, saying:

Azalea’s aim was no longer to merely entertain an audience but to connect with their soul; to have them transported into another realm with her verses and be united. For her, Sufi music became a way to bridge generations, gender, religion and class. Once she found the light again all she wanted to do was share it with others. This was the beginning of Azalea’s rebirth into music.

Logistically, the Small World Music Festival faces the daunting task of organizing eleven days of entertainment and fun in multiple venues and public parks. One of those venues is Lula Lounge, a popular Toronto night club known for diversity in its own right. Some performances are free to attend, some have advance ticket sales, all require proper promotion and event awareness. Small World promotes performances with great expertise, let's look at how they do that...

Multiple Channels Spur Ticket Sales

Small World takes a lot of pride in their event and it shows in the quality of the performers booked. That pride is also apparent in multiple channels they use to increase event awareness and foster the shared experience.

The Small World Music Festival website is both beautiful and of high utility for those seeking more information and buy tickets. The elegant design make for easy discovery of the various dates, times and locations each performance will occur.

There is, of course a Facebook Page, Twitter and requisite YouTube social media. These points of social input and output are very well maintained, as seen by the warm, friendly and cheerful interactions made with music fans. Questions get answered, media is shared, the very best practices in fostering the three chapters of the shared experience (anticipation, exuberance and nostalgia) are in full effect.

In 2012, the use of social media to promote an event and spur ticket sales has basically become a requirement. Wrangling traditional media for event promotion may still be a necessity, but those channels are beginning to wane.

Event promoters and venues would do well to make use of Small World Music Festival’s methods and blend them into their own ticket sale strategies.

Above & Beyond

In addition to event promotion using popular social media, Small World goes above and Beyond by offering dedicated iPhone apps.

The apps serve two functions. One being high levels of utility for attendees by listing all the show times and places. The other being the well of data that native phone apps give back to the publisher. Both Google and Apple return volumes of business-actionable data to app publishers such as advertising demographics, usage by locations, frequency of use and much more. The apps are yet another way for venues to gain the business intelligence to increase ticket sales and long term growth.

Of special note with Small World Music Festival is their status as a nonprofit entity. Combined, donations and ticket sales on the website, social media, and the phone apps generate much needed information on how to approach fundraising goals. ThunderTix contributes to those goals as well since we offer powerful tools to take donations online as part of the event ticket purchase process.

Be like savvy like Small World Music Festival

We hope this spotlight on the Small World Music Festival helps you with your ticket sales and event awareness, plus some inspiration for hard working nonprofits. In the coming weeks, we’ll be posting many more “spotlights” on events, venues, our beloved ThunderTix users and some “secret” lesser known technical aspects of a successful event.