The Arts & Everything in Between

April 11, 2024 | Duration: 47 mins

Creative Resilience, Entrepreneurship and Data-Driven Marketing


Lynn Aitchison

In this episode of The Arts and Everything in Between, Lucy speaks to Lynn Aitchison, founder of marketing agency Evolare, as part of our series celebrating International Women’s Day, featuring women sharing stories of creative resilience.

Lynn discusses her journey through the arts and cultural sector, including through her significant roles at After Digital and involvement in projects like the Old Vic’s Google grants and ads campaign. She shares insights into the importance of budget management for organisational growth, offering tips and strategies for effective arts marketing. She shares her perspective on the value of continuous learning, curiosity, and maintaining a growth mindset amidst the fast-paced evolution of digital marketing tools and platforms.

Have a listen for practical advice on leveraging digital marketing strategies and tools to enhance your organisations’ marketing efforts, based around Lynn’s expertise and her approach to overcoming challenges and seizing opportunities in marketing.



Explore innovative concepts and gain insights from professionals and leaders in the arts, culture, heritage and live entertainment space.

Join arts and culture industry leaders and specialists for actionable advice and inspiration as they share their stories and expertise and discuss the big issues at the forefront of the arts and culture landscape.



If you’ve got a topic you’d like us to cover or want to share your story – get in touch! [email protected].

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A special thank you to Lynn for joining us and sharing her experience. We also want to thank our listeners for their continuous support, don’t forget to subscribe, like, share, and leave a review for “The Arts and Everything in Between” podcast.



About Our Guest

Featured Guest

Lynn Aitchison

Founder and CMO of Evolare Digital

Lynn Aitchison is an award-winning marketing professional specialising in digital with 13 years’ experience across a wide variety of industries and a proven track record of delivering ROAS driving strategies.

She has experience across a wide range of sectors including, luxury goods, B2B, premium drinks, performing arts, visitor attractions and the adventure sports industry.

Her newest endeavour, Evolare Digital, of which she is CMO and Founder, sees her working with a wide variety of clients – especially startups and SMEs to improve customer acquisition and retention through innovative, impactful strategies and campaigns.

Alice: Welcome to the Arts and Everything in Between podcast brought to you by Ticketsolve. At the Arts and Everything in Between, we chat with industry leaders and specialists about some of the big issues facing professionals working in arts, culture, heritage, and live entertainment.

Lucy: hello and welcome to this episode of the Arts and Everything in Between podcast. My name is Lucy Costello and I am head of sales and marketing for Ticketsolve. Today, I am delighted to share with you another episode as part of this year’s series for International Women’s Day. This series, we welcome lots of different women across the sector who share their story of creative resilience within their career.

Today, I am absolutely delighted to be joined by Lynne Aitchison, founder and CMO of Evalare, a new [00:01:00] endeavor for Lynne. Lynne joins us and she talks about her experience of working across the arts and cultural sector, particularly focusing on marketing. We speak about her experience working on a series of different projects, the successes, the highs, the lows.

And also what it means to look at your budget in a way that will bring meaningful growth to your organization. We chat a little bit about some tips and tools as well as new ways of thinking of strategies within your organization. I look forward to sharing this podcast with you. And a quick reminder, if you enjoy listening to this episode, please like subscribe and share to the podcast.

Lynn, hello, welcome.

Lynn: Hello, how’s it going?

Lucy: Great. It’s so nice to have you join us today on this episode, a really special episode. As you know, this is part of our series for International Women’s Day 2024. [00:02:00] So so much for joining us and for sharing a little bit about your career to date.

Lynn: Oh, thank you very much for the invite.

That’s, um, that’s amazing. I’m glad to, glad to be here today.

Lucy: And, um, I was just thinking, Lynn, a little bit of, you know, how our paths have crossed, uh, previously. Um, and it, it was probably around this time, maybe two years ago when we met, because I facilitated your session at, uh, the Ticketing Professionals Conference.

Um, And was just blown away by some of the results that you shared at the time you were working with After Digital and now you’re a founder of, of your own company. I mean, in such a short space of time, that’s, that’s really quite incredible.

Lynn: Well, I mean, I was at After Digital for, for five years in total.

So, um, it’s, It’s definitely been something that I’ve built up to, but yeah, I think, yeah, you’re correct. The Ticketing Professionals Conference, that was, that was where we’d met. I think we were doing the case study on the [00:03:00] old Vic at the time. Yes. Yeah. Yeah, centered around their, um, their Google grants and Google ads activity, which as I recall, um, fairly, fairly hefty ROAS for them in the first year.

So we were really, really proud of that and really chuffed to share that.

Lucy: Absolutely. It was, it was a fantastic case study. So Lynn, maybe before we jump into kind of some of those projects that you’ve been working on, um, recently and, and as part of your, your, your new, um, Um, shall we say journey with your, uh, your company, Avalare, would you be willing to maybe share a little bit of an insight to our listeners of kind of like who you are, um, what’s led you kind of to work within the sector, um, what it is that you’re so passionate about?

I mean, I’ll just give a quick kind of, um, uh, plug. I mean, it, I don’t think I’ve come across someone from, from my experience and, you know, I work within marketing who’s such an expert of absolutely everything to do with marketing and the tips and tricks [00:04:00] that you share yourself and your insight, particularly around digital, I always come away from a conversation with you learning something new or kind of maybe a different way to think of an idea that hasn’t actually worked for me.

So a different way of thinking. So I’m really excited because I think, you know, you’ll bring that value to a lot of our listeners as well today.

Lynn: Well, thank you very much. My face is

Lucy: a bit No pressure now to share your knowledge, but, you know, please do.

Lynn: Definitely. Well, um, I mean, fairly sort of early out of, um, sort of graduating from, from university, I ended up working with an attraction, um, or rather a group of attractions.

So one of them was an indoor ski slope, um, an adventure center, and they had sort of other parts of the business as well. And I was there for five years before. sort of joining After Digital, um, who are, sort of, had been at the time focused more on the arts, culture and entertainment sort of sector. Um, As a sort of [00:05:00] overall focus anyway for the business, the marketing team did have a little bit of a more diverse portfolio, which I always think is a good thing.

Um, because some of the ideas that we would get to work with the arts and culture clients would actually come from luxury brands we’d worked with because we’d found a format that was working really well for them. We would try it out for arts, culture, entertainment clients, because it wasn’t sort of widely used for that sort of sector, we would find that we had a lot of success with that.

So kind of playing the algorithm on its preferences and things like that always seemed to kind of work out quite well. But anyway, I sort of ended up at, uh, After Digital, um, which I absolutely loved working there. Really, really great team. Um, and I was, I was there for five years, so the types of clients that I used to work with from the, this sort of sector, um, companies like the, the Old Vic, uh, Royal Academy of Dance, Co op Live, which is a new venue I think launched just this [00:06:00] year, um, Down in Manchester, affordable Art Fair and like some, some abroad, um, as well.

So Milwaukee Theological Society, things like that. So really quite a broad mix of, of types of clients from within the sector, which, like I say, that’s always really exciting for me because you’ve got to kind of think outside the box and every, everybody’s very different, um, as well. So that was either sort of taking, um, a sort of.

strategic lead, um, where needed, or even just providing very specific sort of skill sets to, to drive their, their marketing forward, or even coming in with a sort of full funnel strategy to kind of help them get wherever they wanted to go. So it was a really, really exciting, um, role for me. And I, I absolutely loved it.

I learned so much working there. I think one of those things, especially being an agency, it’s, it’s that sort of, I mean, it’s, it’s always very flattering when clients think you can solve any problem. [00:07:00] Um, and it does force you to, to kind of do that. Um, but yeah, it’s, it’s, um, definitely fast paced and definitely a position I would recommend for any young marketers.

Um, you will learn so much in such a short space of time, um, which is always good, but I mean, fast forwarding to now. Um, I basically decided at the end of last year, I was going to set up, uh, Evalair and do this for, for myself. Um, I, I can remember when I was at After Digital, I was always sort of praised on the, the sort of culture that I created for the marketing team specifically, um, who, although we were part of the larger organization, we did kind of sit for, for some of it a little bit outside, um, Of everything else because we had such a diverse mix in our portfolio, and we would work closely with the rest of the business for the arts and culture sort of clients and then for everything else we were kind of on our own and for some of that as well.

[00:08:00] I want to sort of create that that’s a continuation of that culture or an evolution of that culture, really, and for my own business and sort of marry up the sort of data driven strategies with the creativity that really does deliver exceptional ROAS. And so my sort of focus. Is, is going to be hopefully fairly broad.

I’m not wanting to sort of pigeonhole myself into any specific industry. I really enjoy that diverse mix. And I think it benefits everybody in the long run because you have to think in so many different ways. Um, but I do, I do absolutely love, um, working with. Either startups or small to medium sized businesses that are looking to scale and a lot of the the arts organizations I’ve worked with over the years, they have fit into that, that sort of second category.

So, um, yeah, I mean it’s the sort of stage of the business that. I enjoy most and I feel like it’d make the biggest impact. So that’s kind of where I would like to sit, but [00:09:00] we’re only a few months in. So you

Lucy: can, I mean, it’s so exciting just to, just to listen to everything you’re saying. And already, you know, I had prepared a list of questions and now I’ve like, Oh, here’s another one.

I just want to pick up really quickly. But something that you’re saying to me is so interesting because I think potentially, and I’m going to say potentially, but just from my experience and. You know, I’m hoping it’s, it’s kind of across the board as well. There is this pressure where we’re all trying to do something new because, you know, new is innovative, it’s creative, it’s, you know, showing that we’re not falling behind the trends.

But then there’s also this pressure where, well, if you’re trialing something, you better make sure it works. So if it doesn’t work, then it’s a fail. And although we talk about, you know, especially this is something we talk about at TicketSolve, like failing fast, looking at your data, making smart decisions.

You You know, uh, the idea that, you know, you might have an idea that, you know, it’s a new one and it fails. It’s very, very daunting. I think on teams [00:10:00] of all sizes, smaller teams, you’re usually talking about resources and budget, bigger teams, you’re talking more people who witness your failure and who can experience it themselves.

Oh, I’m sorry. From the work that you’ve done and the work that you do and working across so many industries, you know, something that you’ve, you’ve really been emphasizing there is this idea that in order for your work to have been successful, you needed to have that awareness of trialing and different ways of thinking.

Um, but that’s not always something that necessarily comes Naturally, um, to a lot of people and kind of, I’m, I’m, I’m kind of picking as well, the fact that this series in particular is addressed for International Women’s Day. Um, like how have you been able to keep that sense of bravery and like, you know, you, you feel very fearless when I’m speaking with you.

If you could just sum that up for us, what is it that you’re putting on the in the morning and is it something we can all purchase?

Lynn: Well, I mean, I would like to say it’s a sprinkle of fairy dust, but unfortunately, I [00:11:00] think it’s just internal optimism. And I guess I don’t really know how to, how to quit things when I have a goal in mind.

I, I have to get there. There’s no, there’s no other way, but I think when it comes to what you were saying there about, um, learning how to deal with failures, because not every test is going to go well, um, what, what I’ve always done with, with the strategies that I’ve worked, worked on, um, is having that sort of growth mindset and that sort of fail fast and, and learn from the data.

There’s always a story there. And that story is actually just as valuable as it being a success because you now know what not to do or what you need to change to make that work. And most of the time, to be successful at anything really, it doesn’t matter whether it’s a campaign, life, a job, whatever it is, it’s, it’s really just not giving up.

But I think [00:12:00] there is always that sort of fear of going to your superiors to sort of say, look, we’ve tried this, it was a monumental failure. However, but it’s, it’s been able to position that as, these are all the things we’ve learned, these are all the things we’re going to do, but also making sure that these tests to qualify them as something that you’re going to, to continue to work on and, and test further to then go, right, is is it actually going to work long term?

Am I gonna be able to scale this? And so on. Making sure that the budgets are low enough. And the, the sort of quality of the data that you’re getting back is rich enough to, to kind of give you the confidence to go, right, I’m going to nail my colors to the mask. Let’s go.

Lucy: I love it. And actually just something that you’ve said there, which is, I’ve just circled it on, on my, on my piece of paper as we’re talking, as you’ve just mentioned, uh, internal optimism.

I love that. I think that’s probably something that is, you know, most of us do not adhere to at all. [00:13:00] We usually talk about like our internal critic imposter syndrome and it’s just, it’s, you know, you haven’t used any of those terms you’ve actually, you know, how can you be brave Lynn? It’s because of your internal optimism.

Lynn: I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’ve felt imposter syndrome before. I remember my first board meeting, I think, in my first managerial position, not long out of uni, where it was kind of like, why have I been put in this position? I haven’t applied for this yet. Not to say I won’t find out, which I did, um, but I remember the first meeting I had to go to, to present to the board and I literally was shaking like a leaf before I went in.

And I was. Also considering, should I nip to the bathroom and try and have a little bit of a sick, um, situation? Just, just in case something happened when I got in there. It was one of those little, is it, is it going to happen? No, we’re fine. Um, So, like, it’s one of those things, like, we all experience those.

It’s a choice [00:14:00] whether or not you’re going to listen or listen to something positive which relates to your goal because anything is possible if you try hard enough.

Lucy: Absolutely. Um, and, and I suppose kind of speaking on that, that optimism then as well, um, you’ve worked with, um, You know, an extensive amount of clients, not even just focusing in on arts and culture, but, you know, from, from external industries as well.

So I can imagine that there has been times where you have looked at projects or you’ve been working with organizations who maybe haven’t experienced the results. Hence why they’ve reached out to you, um, either through, um, After Digital or, um, Evalair. But I suppose it would be great to learn a little bit about kind of some of the issues that your clients have faced and are still facing, a little bit about some of those case studies, um, as well and then some of the learnings that you’ve experienced from working so closely with your clients.

Lynn: [00:15:00] Yeah, absolutely. I think, um, I mean, most of the time I can’t actually remember any clients that I could pull out that have not come with a specific issue, whether that is we need to grow X amount in X time, which is an issue in itself, but equally can just be looked at as that’s a fantastic goal. We’ll help you get there.

Um, or someone coming to say, right, I need help with something very specific, like the old Vic, for example, we’d worked with them on their, um, their Google ads. So when they’d, they’d come to after digital, when I was heading up, um, the team there. I think what had, what sort of happened, they’d started to sort of see results dwindle.

I can’t remember off the top of my head if they’d had someone working on that internally or if they’d been using another third party, but either way, whoever had been managing that, it’s kind of dwindling in, in terms of effectiveness at that point. Um, and first port of call for, for anything like that, if it’s [00:16:00] channel specific or multiple channels that you’re sort of taking over.

is to, to, to audit what the account setups like, what the campaign sort of backends, all the techy bits. So do you have filters on the type of devices that are being targeted certain times? So for some businesses, you will see massive drop offs in terms of engagement, certain points of the week, certain times of day.

So avoiding, um, spending on, on these sorts of areas or equally. I’ve, I’ve had clients turn up to, to sort of using sort of Google ads as a, a sort of an, an example there where they’re actually targeting worldwide, um, worldwide sort of users. Whereas what they’re trying to promote is something really short term.

They need to be here now, sort of within the next two weeks they’re gonna be attending whatever. event or show, um, someone who is, is going to be traveling from [00:17:00] abroad, it’s highly likely that they’re going to need a little bit more time than two weeks, you notice, to, to kind of make that trip. So things like that, um, but equally also being able to, to sort of, you know, Make sense of your data and because I’ve had clients as well where they were spending a lot of money on a particular channel, but when you look at their analytics, actually, they were having much better success on.

So let’s say it was Facebook, but they were actually having much better success on Instagram before they decided to, um, do paid ads, but they’ve been excluding that platform for God knows what reason. But as soon as you start that and start spending on the channel, that’s. Particularly, um, sort of ripe for additional budget, you start to see things turn around.

Lucy: Wow, I mean, I know a lot of those, um, those issues in terms of like, working against a digital tool, it’s something that, [00:18:00] I think, you know, if we could master tomorrow, all of our problems would be solved, like the algorithms in particular. Um, but I suppose if you were kind of giving advice, so if we kind of take this idea of some of the resilience that you’ve experienced in your career is because you’ve been able to think, um, of different ideas or to think of similar challenges, but in different ways.

What are the ways, I suppose, that you would get started and, you know, um, from your experience as well and, and you mentioned there about, you know, maybe putting a budget behind, um, a particular campaign. How do we get started today in a way, I suppose, that we can maybe sustainably monitor and also keep it going but also then the added pressure of getting the results that we’re also trying to, to achieve at the same time?

Lynn: Yeah, I mean, it depends if someone’s starting from scratch or they’re building on sort of legacy campaign data and things like that. Um, if you’re starting from scratch, it’s usually a little bit easier because you’re just looking at your organic [00:19:00] data to go right. Where are people naturally coming in and using that as your sort of platform to go right.

If we’re seeing Facebook and Instagram, so basically the whole meta and sort of suite as where people are coming in just now, that would be first port of call to try and drive. sales through, um, through that channel first, and then start looking at the other ones, because you want to pick the place that you’re likely to have the best success, because that should, in theory, free up more budget for sort of future campaigns and trialing different things.

So I always say the quick wins first, because that will give you more flexibility to then test other channels. So I’ve worked with clients before who were really, really obsessed with. Meta, but, um, some of them would be maybe luxury brands, uh, for example, and, and they would have this obsession on this sort of one sort of set of channels.

And I remember introducing Pinterest to them, [00:20:00] which actually has, um, really good stats in terms of the sort of luxury purchaser. how much more likely they are to purchase, having seen that on Pinterest than on the Meta platform. Um, and we introduced that and I mean the, the ROAS for that was like three times as much as what, what was performing on, uh, just by doing that, that sort of introduction.

But if, if you’re sort of starting this sort of process and you’ve got channels that, that you’re already advertising on, maybe having varying levels of success, first thing that, that’s always kind of. useful if, if there is budget available, um, getting in the right professionals. To help on that. So a lot of clients that I’ve worked with previously, they, um, things like Google ads or Google grants, cause maybe talk about that a bit more later, but Google grants, essentially, if you have a sort of educational or nonprofit.[00:21:00]

sort of arm to the business or you are a non profit or you have sort of an education arm, you can then apply for Google Grants, which is up to 10, 000 of ad spend a month. I’ve yet to find a client that can spend the full 10, 000, but it’s there and it’s available. Um, but that, that’s something that Is, is usually because it’s free, free money, just dumped on someone’s desk and the marketing team go and learn how to do that.

And usually they’re sitting there like, Oh, dear God, no, get themselves into a bit of a mess. Um, again, sort of pressures from their superiors. Why is this not working? Why are we not getting more from that? It’s because they don’t have the, the skillset to do it. It takes a long time to, to get really competent on that channel.

Um, So, and as well, I’ve worked with a lot of either freelancers or people internal to various agencies I’ve worked with who sort of specialize in getting the most from your Google [00:22:00] Grants, because I mean, up to 10, 000 in ad spend should not be sniffed at, uh, if you can, you can do it. But I mean, if, if any of the listeners just sort of type in Google Grants, they’ll get all the sort of, uh, eligibility criteria.

So worth having a look at that. If you think you might and trying to get that applied for, but like I say, get in a help where you need it. And then anything that you can do yourself but equally any agency you take on everybody should have a fairly full funnel and sort of multi multi channel approach so you will get advice.

on what you’re doing internally that sort of ties up. So email and social media, for example, there’s lots of ways to tie them together to really push for ticket sales. Um, so if you’ve got an agency working on your social media, you will no doubt get a lot of very useful advice on the email side of things to make sure that [00:23:00] whichever stage of the sales funnel that both channels are pulling their own way, um, because that’s, that’s really what a multi channel strategy is, is all about, or a full funnel, um, strategy, is making sure that all your, your channels, um, speak to each other, and you’re, you’re basically able to push a new user from just aware of your business to converting and hopefully retaining them in the future as well.

Lucy: Absolutely. Um, so I know something in particular as well that you have great experience on. And I think this is really where we start to kind of get into the, this idea of, um, growth mindset within the podcast episode a little bit is, um, kind of looking at where we, we might be or where we are, um, spending money.

Within our budgets, your experience of how sometimes that’s not really the most optimum method for spend [00:24:00] and how we can look at kind of changing that assumption a little bit as well. And again, I suppose, making more informed decisions based on spend. And, and, yeah, I’m just, I’d love to kind of hear your take on this Lynn.

Lynn: Sure. So, I think out of Well, quite a large portion anyway of the the arts, culture and attractions clients that I’ve worked with in the past. I have always noticed they spend horrendous amounts of money on their websites and this seems to be every four to five years. They are spending really, really silly money on, I mean, don’t get me wrong, the websites look beautiful.

Um, there’s a super creative, um, sort of. designed to, um, different bits that, that you can engage with throughout the site. And it’s all lovely, but it doesn’t, it doesn’t do anything to drive sales other than like, once someone lands there, [00:25:00] yes, it all needs to work and you need a reliable ticket system, all of that.

But, I, I always feel that this needs to be flipped on its head. And this was something that, that my old boss, um, uh, after digital, and I used to talk about quite a lot because you would, you would get a new client sort of, or a potential client coming to you saying, right, we want to spend this much on our website, but we’d quite like to do this, this, or this, or get to this goal, um, for the marketing site.

Can you help? And you would look at the budget for the website and then look at the marketing budget, be like. Okay, right. You’re not, not going to be able to do much for that. Um, one thing that maybe would be quite handy for some of the listeners. Um, when you’re calculating how much you, you need to spend on your, your sort of budget for the year, generally this sort of rule of thumb is.

You’re looking at how much you want to make. So if you, you want to make 10 percent growth on [00:26:00] whatever your overall revenue is, um, you’re looking at between sort of five and 20%, depending on how well known your brand is to the people that you’re trying to target. So that can mount up to quite a lot. And it does shock a lot of organizations sometimes when you kind of put it to them like that.

Um, I think. Sometimes, I mean, I have seen a t shirt for this, um, I think on LinkedIn before where it’s sort of like, I’m a marketer, not a magician.

Depending on who you’re speaking to, um, people can, it’s not like they’re meaning to be unrealistic about what the spend should be, but it comes across as very unrealistic sometimes. Um, and I think that’s just a sort of lack of education because the client relationships. that have been most successful for me and I’ve enjoyed the most, uh, over the sort of years working sort of agency side.

They have been the ones where if a [00:27:00] client doesn’t know something, the more time you spend educating them on, on how things have to work, how you need to think about things. I think that just, it just makes, for an absolutely beautiful, uh, client agency relationship over however many years you work together.

Everybody seems a lot more happy because you know what’s going on, you know the reasons why, and you have that sort of relationship that if there is a sticky conversation you can just have it and as long as, you You’re both transparent about it. Um, I think a lot of this sort of agency client relationships fail when the client sort of keeps core information from you, um, which basically just makes it really, really difficult to kind of do what you want to do.

You need to do.

Lucy: Yeah, absolutely. Um, and that kind of level of trust is really important I think, when you are, you know, feeling that there’s a lot on the line if you are going after a new project or, or kind of fighting for additional budget. [00:28:00] Um, and I think that’s something, you know, that we’re, we’re used to now and you know, because I suppose as, as it becomes more normal that.

Budgets are down for marketing each year, you know, it can become a bit desensitized. I think in our sector in particular, um, where it’s just the norm rather than, well, let’s change that. Let’s flip it on its head and let’s, you know, get a bit of a fire again and try and fight for, for, for more. But then obviously with that additional fight for more budget, we’re then faced with the pressure of having to generate more results.

Um, And I suppose then just something that, you know, I was kind of keen to, to touch on as well a little bit is, as you’ve kind of, um, you know, become an entrepreneur and you’re very entrepreneurial and everything that you say as well, but you’re now, you know, founder of, of your own agency, you’re wearing a lot of different hats, um, within your role.

And I suppose from, from your role, even with After Digital, you’ve always Once upon a time, You know, looked at kind of covering so [00:29:00] many different aspects of, of marketing as well. But how are you finding juggling it now that it’s, it’s really, you know, like it’s your own brand in itself.

Lynn: Um, I mean, it’s, it’s, it’s a lot trying to sort of do everything on your own to start with, especially because I’m sort of building, building my own team and at the moment sort of relying on freelancers that I’ve worked with before and obviously, uh, trust, um, But it doesn’t feel like work because I know, like, that’s the sort of internal optimism type thing coming out in me again.

I know this is for a really big, um, big reward for me, being able to look back hopefully in three years time to go, wow, built that, that was excellent. So, and then whatever the next. iteration, the next evolution of the company, um, is aimed for that. But, um, yeah, it’s, I think when it’s, it’s for [00:30:00] yourself, it doesn’t feel like work.

It, it just, I, I really enjoy what I do. I, I love building things. I love, Sorting out problems for clients and this is just doing the same for myself at the minute because I think all all agency sort of roles that I’ve, I’ve had, and I mean it’s very flattering that clients, assuming that you can solve any problem which is, and I think that That sort of helps someone with a personality like, like mine where you’re presented with a new challenge of kind of, this is the problem can you help and it’s like, I actually don’t know but yes I will do my best to get you that.

And you just learn so much by doing that. So, yeah, I think it’s going to be a rollercoaster of a year for me, but I’m very much looking forward to it.

Lucy: Oh, no, absolutely. And, you know, we’re wishing you the very best success. And I mean, from the case studies, even that I have listened to you present that, I mean, you [00:31:00] are results driven, there’s no denying that at all.

Um, and I suppose just again, kind of honing in on that. You know, you’re, you’re well used to kind of the current, um, shall we say like budget for 2024 and how we’re all, you know, feeling what things are looking like for the sector in particular, and kind of looking at maybe some of your takeaways from where you have, um, maybe more strategic spending within your organization, you know, how can.

From your opinion on your experience, how can we start looking at getting the most from our marketing budget as it is currently?

Lynn: Yeah, definitely. So I sort of touched on, um, Google grants earlier. That is a check it out. If you are eligible, get yourself applying for that. It’s um, it’s budget that is [00:32:00] immeasurably useful if you can get hold of it.

So if you’re a nonprofit or there’s an education alarm to the venue, the attraction, go for that. Um, but I think the main thing is. Getting the simple things right. So making sure that your data is, is rich enough that you can make. Decisions and that are going to help drive sales. There’s lots of ways to sort of save budget.

If you are really, really on top of your data, and that might be something that you hire in either a freelancer or an agency to help with getting that bit right, really does unlock a lot of other sort of options and activities for you. But even sort of simple channels like making sure that your email and database is working for you so that ties into other channels you can extract your, your email database which usually they have a much higher, and intent to continue to purchase from you or make a first purchase if [00:33:00] they’ve.

They’ve subscribed, but they’re, they’re relatively new. Um, these are the types of things that you can use on social media to create look alike audiences and things like that, um, which essentially are, um, so the, the characteristics of the email addresses. The profiles that are attached to the email addresses of your newsletter, which again, sort of just repeating, those would be considered a higher intent sort of group, and you can then find people that have similar interests and behaviors to them on social media, it will do all of that for you, and you will be able to use those audiences to drive ticket sales from that.

So that’s a really, really easy way to do that. Um, also making sure that you are continuing to build your email database because the more you sort of, um, drive that, the more data you’ll have to play with for these types of audiences. Um, like I [00:34:00] said, that’s, that’s probably the two most simple, um, options for you.

Um, Another sort of option is making sure that the advertising that you’re doing right now, so whether it’s on social, whether it’s a sort of Google ads, whatever that may be, if you can personalize it based on either the behaviors or data that you have about the sort of people interacting, the better.

That’s something that I’ve always found that, um. sort of pikes people’s interests if you can be super targeted to either hooking them in on the most interesting part of the sort of show, the event that you’re advertising that best suits their Their sort of behaviors and kind of similar to the sort of email database and [00:35:00] idea if you’re using that as lookalike audiences if you have a sort of a family orientated shows and that’s something that you can build in and really focus on and because that should come out in the lookalike audiences and whether that’s the mum booking the dad and that should be apparent in the In the data, and if you can personalize it specific for that, you’re going to have a better chance at higher click through rates and conversion rates from that as well.

Lucy: Absolutely. And I love that you mentioned about lookalike audiences, because sometimes I would speak with, um, like my friends or family members and, you know, you, you get that, um, That kind of like whisper where, um, someone will say, I think my phone’s listening to me because I’ve just been served an ad in my head.

I’m always thinking you’ve been profiled through look at like audiences as well, I’m sure. But the other one I was just going to say to you there was, um, it’s so interesting that you’ve, you’ve mentioned and highlighted, um, [00:36:00] emails as well, and the importance of like gathering emails within your database.

Because I think with like the move towards. AI and, um, you know, like always being fearful of algorithms and, you know, um, is it copy or content or, you know, video, what works best on each platform. Sometimes we can forget as something as, you know, like, not to say that going back to emails is going back to basics or anything, but like emails are a core foundation.

And I do think sometimes we can get lost in, and What about, you know, what are we doing here in terms of, um, like this new platform or have we considered looking at this, um, when a lot of big questions, I think, or, or kind of, uh, fundamental issues within marketing can happen because there isn’t a substantial or a healthy or an engaged email database.

Lynn: Absolutely. I think as well, email just isn’t, it’s like talking about SEO when you’re launching a new website. [00:37:00] It’s really important. It’s just not sexy. Right. Do I want to work on this email campaign or do I want to work on this sort of pool funnel, beautifully curated, uh, meta or TikTok or whatever.

Social, um, sort of campaign, which has flashy videos, gorgeous imagery, all of this. It’s, I know which one I always prefer to work on, um, but when budgets are tight, email is literally your cheapest available channel to not only sort of nurture people through your, your sort of sales cycle, um, getting people to, to join up, even if they’re, they’re quite new to, to your venue, uh, or your business and then sort of.

over time coax them into a purchase. Um, but equally the people on your email database should be sort [00:38:00] of primed for those repeat purchases. So those are your, your sort of first best customer when, when you don’t have the budget to go after huge new audiences to try and convert them. Um, as well, every business has a, uh, quite a different, um, sort of conversion timeline.

So luxury. Um, brands that I’ve worked with that can be six months plus, um, sort of venues that I’ve worked with that can be anything, um, from sort of like a month if it’s going to be someone traveling to the area, it can sometimes take a bit longer, um, or it can be even as low as sort of seven days to, to get someone from, I’ve seen the ad, I’m now buying a ticket, so knowing your, your sort of conversion window.

Knowing that quite well and even sort of looking at again, tied back to email, the lifetime value of an email subscriber. So this applies to pretty much any business that I’ve worked with, whether it’s, um, [00:39:00] B2C or B2B even as well. Knowing the lifetime value of that particular subscriber or customer is really, really important to sort of know.

Who is going to, if budgets are tight, who you can focus on that’s going to drive the most revenue. Um, and also as well, if you find that if someone subscribes to your newsletter, they make four purchases within a year. It’s really important to keep driving people onto that list because you know, once you’ve got them on average, they’re going to buy four tickets.

Whereas everything else that, that sort of happens outwith that sort of platform where you do have a wealth of data about a particular, um, sort of, uh, contact within that, um, it’s a little less obvious. the value of them over time.

Lucy: So then I know we’re coming up kind of close to the close of the podcast, but I think something that I [00:40:00] I’m not surprised that it’s kind of come out as a theme of this podcast as well, but just something to kind of maybe acknowledge is within your role.

And I think it’s it’s fair to say across, you know, anyone, regardless of the industry who’s working within marketing, it’s changing all the time. And some of the big milestone moments that you’ve definitely experienced, it’s like. The change from Twitter to X, Meta, AI, the introduction of that, the changes to algorithms, Google Analytics 4, like.

Even in there, there are changes that have only happened in the past kind of 18 months alone. You know, we, we, we do as marketeers, we always need to be learning. And, you know, um, I suppose kind of working through challenges, problem solving, everything that you’ve kind of been mentioning since the beginning of this podcast as kind of, um, a final maybe note to, to some of our listeners, this international women’s day series, what are some of your top tips that have really helped you kind of.

Keep up to, keep up on top of the trends, I suppose, be [00:41:00] more familiar with some of the, the behaviors that are happening online, um, you know, how can you advise to someone who is, you know, still maintaining, you know, their day to day admin, all of their tasking, as well as then the additional pressure of getting used to new platforms, new ways of looking at data, you know, how do we make it kind of, you know, Uh, achievable for us so that we can see, you know, the success in, in our career that, that you’ve definitely, um, experienced in yours.

Lynn: Um, I think one really solid bit of advice is, and this is something that I struggled with to start with, especially once I got into a managerial role, you put such an effort into developing the rest of your team, you forget about yourself. So I used to always schedules like the last few hours, don’t get me wrong, 4pm on a Friday.

That is when a client will get in touch to say, Oh my God. This has happened. I’ve known about [00:42:00] it since five o’clock in the morning, but I’m just letting you know now, like, the worst has happened. Please help. Um, but I did use the schedule at the end of the day. So if the worst didn’t happen for a client that I had to down tools and just focus on that, which, um, luckily wasn’t the case.

It wasn’t every week, but it was fairly regular. You’re like, Oh God, um, great start to the weekend. Um, but the end of the day on a Friday, typically if nothing had went wrong, it would be quite quiet. Um, or you would have ticked a lot of your list anyway. So I used to give myself an hour. To an hour and a half where I would catch up on all of the newsletters and things like that, that I would sort of keep, uh, keep tabs on.

So there’s a, a sort of Google one as well, which will cover all the Google products. Um, same for, for sort of meta and things like that. So that’s either sort of LinkedIn, um, newsletters or. Email ones, or I would sometimes just have [00:43:00] alerts that would come in. So Google alerts to kind of keep me up to date with, um, with any sort of big things.

Um, and just make sure you have that time to focus on yourself as well. And that could even be a new formats available on Meta. So, I’ll just do the, the sort of Facebook, um, or Metacademy, which it used to be, it might have changed name by now, but there are learning resources for pretty much all of these platforms.

So you can spend time learning whatever’s been added. You can learn that, um, in, in sort of handy sort of video tutorials and then you get tested at the end. It was something I used to get my entire team to, to do, um, on, on a regular basis. Um, but I guess. Sort of, I guess, a trait that will help you, um, through, through your sort of careers, just to be curious, um, always asking questions.

So I used to have great relationships with, um, so the, the sort of Google support, um, [00:44:00] Google ads, um, Meta. wherever TikTok, when we started doing that as well, getting representatives on that side that will, will give you all the extra information that you could possibly need. Um, that, that definitely is worth, worth your while.

Um, and, and having that, that sort of extra support or someone that you can go to on that side, um, has always really, really helped me. But I think the best, the, the way that I’ve sort of succeeded, um, in previous roles is building a, a team of people that are super smart, smarter than me, and, um, basically just making sure that there’s nothing blocking them from doing a great job.

Of delivering the strategies that I pulled together. I’ve, I’ve had some amazing teams, um, especially after digital. I cannot think of anybody that I worked with there that I would not 100 percent work with again.

Lucy: Amazing. [00:45:00] And then if you don’t mind, I think just one other piece that you mentioned as well, which is super important to keep all of that together, your internal optimism.

Lynn: Yeah, absolutely. Harder said than done at some points, but bad times or stressful times never last long. So, um, yeah, I guess it’s a kind of keep your chin up always.

Lucy: Well, thank you so much, Lynn, for joining us today. This episode of The Arts and Everything in Between is a special one. Special episode as part of our series for International Women’s Day 2024.

And thank you so much for giving us a little bit of insight into your, your incredible success. Congratulations on your new firm, Evalaire, and also thank you so much as well for giving us kind of an insight into, you know, your creative resilient, resilience, your hunger to always be learning, um, and you know, how little fear kind of you show towards problem solving as well.

Lynn: Thank you very much. It’s been great. Great to be on. Thank you.

Lucy: Thank you.


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