Small Business Start-Up Idea – Community Events Website

It can be difficult to keep track of all the local events that are taking place, often because the information is spread across numerous sources such as local newspapers or even the local news on television. A community event website would be a smart way of using technology to make it more convenient for people to get access to this information all in one place. This is unlikely to become a major business, but it could generate some additional income for you via paid advertising and sponsorship.  

Skills needed: You will need to have basic computing skills in order to maintain the website. If you have programming knowledge you will be able to build your own database and website, otherwise you will have to pay someone else to develop these for you. A background in marketing would be useful as you will need to generate high levels of traffic.  

Business environment and set-up cost:  There is little international potential (except for tourists looking to find out about your local area) unless you become very successful and expand into some kind of portal for community events over a larger area. This could be a cheap business to set up if you have your own computer equipment and are competent enough to build a website. You will need to invest in both online and offline marketing in order to generate traffic. The overall cost will vary from £1,000 to £5,000.  

Marketing Techniques:  

  • Participate in the pay-per-click schemes of the popular search engines
  • Become mutually linked with as many local websites as possible
  • Allow people to sign up to be informed via e-mail when an event is listed in a category that interests them
  • Use a viral ‘Tell a Friend’ campaign to get people to forward event details to people they know
  • Work together with event organisers to offer coupons and discounts and set up an opt-in mailing list to distribute them
  • Use banner advertising on websites that local people are sure to frequent (e.g. the website of the local free paper)
  • Use OnlineOffice to set up web-site, blog and online shop to promote your business online

Complimentary business ideas: Arrange with event organisers to sell tickets through your website on their behalf and take a small percentage or cover charge as commission.  

Notes: Your information must be reliable and constantly updated. If you choose to sell tickets you must have a delivery system in place.  

Online examples & resources:  

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