You Can’t Beat Wellington on a Wednesday: A new approach to events marketing

April 21, 2011 at 4:57 pm Leave a comment

By Jamie Crump

Wellington WednesdayWellington is wonderful in many ways, so wonderful in fact that we’ve been able to use alliteration to launch a new approach to events marketing and own a day of the week. 

We know that New Zealanders love to come to Wellington for the cracking nightlife, restaurants, bars, cafés and shopping, but it’s the events and experiences that often tip them over the edge to book and decide to come now. 

So we asked ourselves ‘how can we put Wellington events and experiences in front of New Zealanders on a weekly basis in a fun way?’  Our good friends at TouchCast came up with the idea of a weekly Dutch auction website called Wellington Wednesday.  But before we go any further you may well be wondering ‘what’s a Dutch auction? Well here’s the low down…

Gotta Love Those Dutch

A Dutch auction is also known as a reverse or descending price auction.  The auction begins with a high asking price which is lowered until a participant is willing to accept the price. You’ve got to be on your toes, because if you wait too long for an item to reduce in price someone will grab it before you do, or it will hit its reserve.

So how did it get its name?  Well it’s named for its use in the Dutch Tulip Craze.  A period in the Dutch Golden Age of the 1600s during which contract prices for tulip bulbs reached extraordinarily high levels and then suddenly collapsed.

You’re now probably wondering as I did, does the more common ascending price auction have a nickname?  Well would you believe it, it does – it’s called an English auction.  So if you want to impress your friends start calling Trade Me an English auction site!

It’s all about the experience is the place to get fantastic deals on all the good stuff that makes Wellington the ‘coolest little capital in the world’ – at a price that drops by the minute.

It’s not just your average daily deal website like GrabOne where a large volume of one product is offered at a static low price – it’s an experience site where you decide the price.  The Dutch auction approach provides the potential to give huge value to consumers if they have the nerve to hold back against other would-be buyers.

We see Wellington Wednesday as a marketing tool to showcase the ‘best of Wellington’.  We’re not about shifting lots of product and making money from the site.  The idea is to work with local businesses and event promoters like you guys to create awareness of all the choice events and experiences Wellington has to offer by providing a limited number of tickets to those experiences each week. 

We’re also using the site to give people access to select Wellington ‘money-can’t-buy’ experiences, like the Hurricanes one we had up for grabs last week – where you got tickets to the Hurricanes vs Blues match, a 1st XV Lounge Pass, a behind the scenes pre-match tour of Westpac Stadium and the opportunity to stand in the players tunnel as they run out onto the field.

Here’s a parting thought for you.  With group buying websites launching on daily basis, how about or  Nah, doesn’t sound quite the same does it…

Next time I’ll update you on how Wellington Wednesday is going and what we’ve learnt. In the meantime, tell us your ideas on what ‘money can’t buy’ experiences you could offer.

Entry filed under: Domestic, Marketing. Tags: , , , .

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About Positively Informed

Positively Informed is a group blog manned by the senior management team at Positively Wellington Tourism. It’s a place for us to share our musings on tourism, the marketing of Wellington, report on the outcomes of our projects and post examples of random things that inspire, interest or intrigue us.


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