Event Punch Card

Full disclosure. I stole this idea from my daughter’s high school. Well, I adapted an idea from my daughter’s school.

The other day, Cece announced that she was attending a tennis match at a school across town. When I pressed her, asking which friends were playing or if she was going to see a boy, she said, “It’s a COTY event.”

COTY stands for Class of the Year, and the school targets various events throughout the year to boost attendance. Sporting events, dances, plays… those announced as COTY events benefit from a huge increase in number of seats filled and the students get out of their comfort zones a bit.

If you struggle with lackluster attendance at your events, you might consider implementing an event punch card to reward the customers who do attend.

First, come up with a name and identifying logo. For this piece, I’ll call it Whatnot University: Random Events for a Well-Rounded Education. Whatnot-University-emailNext, create a punch card. If you design it business card size (3.5 x 2″ or 1050 x 600 px), it makes it easy for print shops or for you to use pre-perforated DIY cards.

Then you can randomly tag certain events through your promotional materials. Author events, book clubs, trunk shows, wine tastings… these are all great options of different types of events you can choose to match the sensibilities of your customers.

When customers arrive at the various Whatnot University events, simply punch their card. No purchase necessary. They get credit for showing up.

When the punch card is full, you can reward the “graduate” with a special discount, a gift card, or a chance to enter a drawing to win something really great.

The reward doesn’t have to be fabulous. Class of the Year receives one day off from school. Just one day. But the experience of attending interesting events is the true reward.

Beth Golay

Beth is a reader, writer, marketer and Books & Whatnot founder. Even though she knows better, she's a sucker for a good book cover and will positively swoon if a book is set in appropriate type. @BethGolay