Capitalize on the excitement of the new year by encouraging fans to add the 2016 schedule to their calendar

The approach of a new year means that new season schedules for Sports and TV shows are being released, and fans can’t wait to see what 2016 has in store. This is the perfect time to capitalize on the anticipation and excitement of the new year by encouraging fans to add the 2016 schedule to their calendars. Fans are already searching for the schedule and making plans for the new year, so offering them a tool that allows them to add the events to their calendar makes it easier and more convenient than ever.

CalReply accounts generally see the largest spike in subscriber growth in the 4-6 weeks leading up to a new season, so we highly recommend implementing the following action plan to maximize your subscriber growth during this crucial period.

1. Dedicated Email Blast

Sending a dedicated email to your user database is one of the most effective and low-cost ways to build subscribers. Emails have proven to have a higher return on investment than social media and any other form of digital engagement. Across a large cohort of clients, email marketing tends to be the highest converting channel for calendar promotion with over 35% of e-mail click throughs resulting in a calendar subscribe. Given that a single subscribe results in multiple real-time event reminders, converting email audiences into calendar subscribers is a powerful strategy.
Send your fans an email with a subject like that says something like “Add the 2016 UFC schedule to your calendar and never miss a fight!”. Be sure to Include a large “Add to Calendar” button in the body of the email so fans can click the button to go directly to the calendar page.

Here is an example of an email that NFL sent to their fans:

2. Promote Frequently on Social Media

Promotion on social media is one of the most effective ways to gain exposure for your calendars and build subscribers, so it is imperative that you promote heavily in the days and weeks leading up to the new season.

Generally you can promote more frequently via Twitter versus Facebook as Tweets move through the stream over time. Approximately 4-6% of your followers see any given Tweet so we recommend promoting frequently on Twitter (at least 3-4x a day) especially if you have a lot of other content flowing through.

For Facebook, we recommend sending out a dedicated calendar post each day to promote upcoming content and to increase the frequency of the promotion closer to the start of the season.

You should also pin your Tweets and Facebook posts to the top of the page to ensure that the link is always visible and accessible to fans. Be sure to use compelling imagery and creative copy to keep fans interested and engaged. Take a look at some good examples from FOX below:

Don't miss the premiere of The Simpsons Sept. 27! Set a reminder now: fox.tv/1ObitRW

Posted by The Simpsons on Tuesday, August 18, 2015

If you have a marketing budget, it is also a great idea to promote your Facebook and Tweets to reach a wider audience.

3. Social Promotion Countdown Strategy

Use a promotion countdown strategy to build excitement and encourage viewers to subscribe before the show or sport premieres. Include a daily countdown with the calendar URL on all of your social media pages including Facebook and Twitter. For example, a post may say “Empire premieres in just 3 days and it’s going to be the best season yet! Add every episode to your calendar now so you don’t miss a minute! – on.fox.com/Empire”

4. Digital and In-App Integrations

Ensure that all digital integrations on your website and in your app are in place at least 3-4 weeks before the season begins. Given that fans are most likely to check the website and app for scheduling information before the show or sport airs, it is crucial that the “Add to Calendar” button is available ahead of time. This will enable your fans to to download the schedule, instead of attempting to commit your dates to memory.

 

Timing is a crucial factor in the success of your CalReply account, so don’t miss the boat by waiting to promote until after the season has already begun. Use the buzz and excitement of a new season to your advantage and promote, promote, promote!