It’s the morning of your event and all has gone swimmingly – all your hard work marketing it has paid off and advance ticket sales are better than expected. You’ve got a small amount left aside to sell on the door and, at a push, a few guestlist places you can give to those friends whose help you’ve relied on.

It’s going to be a great night, but now you realise there’s something you haven’t yet covered: How are you going to get everyone in? Here are a few pointers to save you the stress…

  1. Multiple entry points

You might be running a gig above a pub where capacity is limited and there’s only one way in and out, but if there is an alternative entrance you can use, or maybe a few different ones, it’s worth utilising them or having one ready in reserve. You’ll know from your own experience that there’s nothing more annoying than being stuck in a slow moving queue, especially if there’s another set of doors that aren’t being used because the venue is understaffed.

  1. Splitting your ticket lists

If you’ve sold tickets through several different ticket agents, you should consider directing customers to different entrances or door staff depending on who they booked with. This will make entry simpler for customers and also make checking people in a hell of a lot easier. If you’ve just sold through one agent (WeGotTickets hopefully!) then why not split the list up alphabetically and direct customers accordingly. Which brings us conveniently to no.3…

  1. Signage

It doesn’t take much effort to put up a few signs directing ticket holders to the relevant entrances. This will speed up entry, save you incessantly repeating yourself when customers ask the same question over and over, and create a positive customer experience. It might not be very rock and roll, but if there is a build-up of confused looking punters clogging up the hallway, it can be quite off putting.

  1. Early ticket collection

What happens if all your advance ticket buyers turn up at exactly the same time? Sure, it’s sort of unlikely, but it would cause a bit of a headache if it happened – and, believe us, we’ve seen it happen! If the venue is open all day, or you are running a box office for a festival, why not get someone down early and allow customers to pick up tickets, wristbands, or get a stamp so they can by-pass the queues later.

  1. Brief your staff

It doesn’t matter who you have on the door stamping people’s wrists and ticking them off lists, make sure they know what they’re doing. You might think ‘how hard can it be?’, but even if you have all of the above covered, failing to pass on information to your door staff, no matter how many of them there are, is asking for trouble.

These are pretty obvious tips but you’d be surprised how many people don’t follow them. Our Support Department have to deal with all kinds of customer complaints and I know first-hand how easily these could be avoided. We even get customers being turned away from the venue because bar staff hadn’t heard of that obscure Americana artist playing later in the backroom. Spend a bit of time pre-planning, be clear with your instructions and you’ll get everyone in speedily and with no fuss, giving you time to concentrate on the actual event.

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