How do you know when to market your event? They say timing is everything and as a race director who probably keeps a stopwatch and start gun handy, you know that better than anyone. The date of your event is set (or maybe not), but do you know exactly how many months in advance you should open registration? Or how long people normally need to train for a 5K, triathlon, marathon, etc?
If you aren’t sure or just want some solid proof, the almighty Google can help. There’s this cool thing called Google Trends which allows you to input key terms and get a report on when those terms are searched for. And it’s completely free, of course.
Google Trends allows you to filter by location (worldwide vs. country), date range, and more. So if you want to know when people start thinking about registering, training, or sweat-wicking socks, just ask Google. You’ll get hard data that will show you (down to the week), when that term is most frequently searched. From there you can time your event marketing to coincide with these high traffic weeks (and essentially predict the future).
Here are a few examples:
Search trends for the term “triathlon”
The search trends start growing in April and peak the first week of August. If you’re a triathlon event director, plan to market your event in August to increase your chances of being found online.
Search trends for “running plan”
The first week of January and the middle of August both have very high search traffic. January is obviously because of New Year’s Resolutions. But what about August? Our guess is that the kids are going back to school, summer’s over, and mom and dad are ready to get fit again. Market your event and training plans for your event during these peak times.
Search trends for “fast 5k”
If you organize a 5K that you know has a fast, flat course, June is your best month to market it. Promote your event this month and be sure to target your messaging for competitive runners.
Get in Google Trends and play around…throw in some key terms that would apply to your event and see what insights you can get from it. If all goes well, your team will be calling you a psychic soon!