As many managers know, events can be a huge part of your website, and spark a lot of engagement with your audience. At Localist, we’ve seen this for our customers on a large scale: we recently reached 100,000 events posted across all of our customers’ online event calendars!
To celebrate this milestone, we thought we’d dig a little deeper into the numbers behind managing events. Where does the traffic to an online event calendar come from? What features do administrators and end-users really love? Read on to find out.
1. 100,000 events.
Again, that’s a ton of events. In order to get to 100,000 events, Localist calendar administrators leaned heavily on features such as:
- Importing events from iCal feeds
- Bulk uploading events from a spreadsheet
- Uploading events quickly via our super-easy manual event addition function
2. 8,300 hours of administrator time saved.
Assuming that administrators saved 5 minutes per event, that’s 8,333 hours of administrator time saved over 100,000 events. Saving 5 minutes per event is an estimate based on the complexity of entering and managing events on other calendar systems. Plus, our totally eliminates duplicate entry—another huge time saver for administrators. In everything we do at Localist, we try to think about eliminating unnecessary mouse clicks, getting to the core of what each feature should do as efficiently as possible. Some of our functionality, such as using a text field for date entry instead of requiring several clicks on date drop-downs, might only save 10 seconds per event. But multiply 10 seconds by 100,000 events, and you’ve got 277 hours saved.
3. 205,910 total all-time notifications sent.
That’s 205,910 notifications for events, as of December 31, 2012. This number includes weekly event digests, and all email reminders. It’s not even including social media posts, which we’ll cover later. We thought we’d look at this number as a reminder that the online event calendar is not just a source of information—it’s a marketing tool for your organization and the events it publishes.
4. 700,000 students served.
While not all of our customers are schools, our higher education customers have a better tally of the community they serve than our media, non-profit, and for-profit customers.
5. 2,047 code deployments in Localist history.
That’s 38 code deployments a month, and over 1 a day. We’re always working to improve Localist based on customer feedback and changing technology.
6. 4,651 attendees at most popular event.
Our most popular event ever was the Vans Warped Tour. No surprise there! Our attendee count includes Facebook and Eventbrite attendees. Perhaps this event was so popular because it took advantage of our social integration, and was also posted on a Facebook page. Later, we’ll cover just how important social sharing is to an online event calendar’s success.
Localist’s patent-pending trending algorithm takes attendee and social media data to display the most popular events first. Calendar users love this, because they can see what’s cool and rearrange their schedule to make sure they’re catching the best events around. Plus, since our algorithm automates the trending display, this feature saves even more time for Localist administrators.
8. 335% more people find out about events because of online sharing.
This past October, we added some sophisticated social tracking to Localist. In the 30 day period we first started tracking, there were 2,956 shares across all Localist platforms, corresponding to 9,927 clicks, or a 335% “viral lift” because of online word of mouth. The most popular ways to share events were:
- Copying an event’s URL from the address bar. It seems old-fashioned, but this was extremely popular. In most analytics systems, traffic from people who click these links is recorded as “direct.” Yet truly, this type of sharing is a form of social media. With 1811 people copying the URL, 8920 shared it—a 495% viral lift. Whether people emailed the link to friends or just pasted it into Facebook, they’re sharing events like crazy.
- Sharing an event on Facebook via a share button. Facebook sharing is huge. In just 30 days, events on Localist were shared via our Facebook buttons 596 times, and those events were clicked on 800 times.
- Sharing an event on email via a share button. As we found in our , users still want to find out about events via email. Our analytics show this too, with 200 shares via email sharing buttons.
- Sharing an event on Twitter via a share button. With 152 shares, and 99 clicks on those shares, Twitter is also a popular sharing mechanism. But Facebook and email remain supreme.
From looking at these metrics, we can see that our customers have robust, engaging online event calendars that are bringing more people back to their websites.