Mixer can do a LOT. It has a ton of powerful and useful functionality, but in the early stages, your focus should be on database growth and the associated features. So here is a quick guide to help you know where to put your early efforts:
Structuring Campaigns to Promote Database Growth. Whether you are starting from scratch or have an existing database to access at launch, continued growth is essential. Be sure to read through the Recruitment and Activation tips to help structure your campaigns accordingly.
Graphic Assets. To launch, you’ll need the following in place:
Images associated with auctions and events
Auctions. You’re going to want to launch with a mix of big and small ticket items. Read through the Auction section here.
Surveys: Have at least a couple of surveys available before launch. Survey tips can be found here.
GROW YOUR DATABASE
Like any database platform, database growth is fundamental to achieving success with Mixer. You need to recruit new members, and you need to activate existing members.
These are two different but overlapping campaigns that need to run all the time. Build them into the fabric of your on-air and online promotion culture. Let’s look for a minute at each:
Recruitment is about NEW membership.
Keep it simple. “Rate. Earn. Get.” “Listen. Rate. Earn.” “Have a say in what we play.”
Don’t just alert existing members to the cool premiums available for auction. Promote the premiums as a reason for new members to join.
Some listeners simply want a voice. The ability to rate songs will be enough. Drive song ratings and new membership by reminding people they can have a say in what you play. Use Mixer Charts to help promote this (this also helps activate existing members).
Others will be more interested in premiums. Talk about the auction items on-air. Remind listeners they can bid by joining.
Make sure you’re always ready to “greet” new members. This means you ALWAYS have current banners, fresh auctions, available surveys, etc. This is their first impression. Don’t ask them to sign up and then appear stale.
Be sure you always have some small premiums available for auction. A new member doesn’t have many points. If they log-in for the first time and every premium seems unattainable, they may be discouraged. See other auction tips here.
Never. Stop. Recruiting.
Activation is about engaging the existing membership.
Update auctions often and promote new items.
Don’t put everything up for bidding at once.
Give them exclusives. Make their membership special.
Give them exclusive or early access to a pre-sale code (put the code on a banner).
Make membership a requirement to win tickets to an in-studio performance. This feels exclusive!
Use event check-ins as a way to qualify for a premium giveaway. For example, if you’re sponsoring a happy hour party at a client’s restaurant/bar, create an event for it, and tell you members that everyone who comes to the happy hour and checks-in is qualified to win it. This also gives you valuable data you can deliver to the client, quantifying the traffic you’re able to drive to their location.
General Auction Best Practices
- Update auctions often and promote new items, on-air and online.
- Don’t put everything you have in your prize closet up for bidding at once.
- Don’t underestimate the value of smaller items! Not everyone is going to try and bid on big-ticket items, but signed CDs, posters, t-shirts, etc, with low-minimum bids, can help maintain engagement and generate participation.
- Be sure to tag your auctions. This is a great opportunity to develop richer listener profiles. See more about tags here.
- Process auction winners ASAP. This is important.
- Use auctions to drive new membership! Promote them on-air and online. If non-member listeners are hearing about cool prizes they can earn, they’ll be encouraged to join.
How long should an auction last?
This can vary, but generally 5-7 days is a good length. Larger, experience-based premiums that have a higher minimum bid should generally last longer, two weeks or more, allowing listeners time to accumulate points.
How should minimum bids be determined?
Think in terms of how your listeners are accumulating points. If you’re going to set a minimum bid at a high number (500 points or more), make sure you either are allowing ample time for the auction to run so that listeners can earn the required points, or that you’re offering additional ways in which they can earn, such as surveys or event check-ins.
It doesn’t make sense to start an item at 2000 points if the only way they can earn points is by rating songs, at 5 points per rating. While that might satisfy existing users who have previously accumulated a lot of points, it will discourage new members because the minimum bid may seem unattainable.
Are auction winners notified automatically?
Yes, but follow-up for processing may still be required. We recommend using the Auction Winner Instructions (found on Station Settings/Basic Info page) to minimize the processing efforts. Your winner will receive an automated email that will say “Congratulations, you’re the winner of [auction item name].” You can customize the info that follows. We suggest something along the lines of this:
”If your prize is a digital download, coupon code, or anything that can be delivered digitally, we'll send you an email with all the details about collecting your prize. If your prize requires pickup, please come to the station offices, Monday - Friday between 9 am and 5 pm, located at [address]. Tell the receptionist you've come to collect an auction item. Please be sure to bring valid photo ID!”
Surveys are vital. For the listener, they can be fun and an easy way to earn points. For you, they can be an easy way to learn more about your listeners. For your client, they can be a path to greater insights to their potential customer.
Listeners can only answer a survey once.
Encourage participation by assigning a high point value to your surveys.
Be sure to tag your surveys. This is a great opportunity to develop richer listener profiles. See more about tags here.
Keep surveys short. Depending on the nature of the questions, 5 - 10 is acceptable. If it’s fun, silly and light, more is ok. But if it’s serious in nature, keep it around 4 - 6 questions.
You should always have some fun, introductory surveys active for new members. Don’t let these expire. Localize them. Favorite local sports franchise, taco stand, local craft brewery, etc.
Outside of the fun introductory stuff, be careful that you don’t overdo it with surveys. You want accurate and usable responses. If surveys are overdone, listeners will click through them mindlessly just for the points reward.
Partner with a client to craft questions that they need answered. Don’t forget - after the survey closes, you have the ability to send an email to the survey participants. Work with your client to maximize this opportunity.
Even when crafting a client-related survey, throw in a fun question or two.
There are several great ways to use your aggregated song research data, all of which can be sponsored.
A weekly (or monthly) listener countdown. Run a report in your Custom Aggregation page for the highest-rated titles of the week. Set a minimum sample size if you choose. “These are the highest-rated songs of the week, as decided by YOU, the listener, brought to you by [sponsor].” (Bonus - make sure that sponsor has a premium available for auction, a sponsor-specific survey or both during this timeframe.)
Year-End Top 100. Run a report on the calendar-year and pull the top 100 titles. Make this a sponsored year-end countdown. Coordinate with the sponsor to include premiums for auction.
Artist chart. Is a core-artist releasing a new album, single, or coming to town on tour? Use your aggregated data to create an artist-specific countdown to drive awareness and song-ratings. If it’s a concert, create an event so your listeners can check-in to the concert for additional points.
Events can be created through the Admin Backoffice, and accessed by your listeners via the mobile app. They can check-in at an event in exchange for points.
Events don’t have to be concerts. They can be the location of a live-remote, they can be a client’s address, they can be any location or event that you want your listeners to visit.
When assigning a point-value to an event, consider how difficult or easy it is for listeners to attend, how valuable it is to your client, and how valuable it is to you.
Be sure to tag your events. You can learn a lot about listeners by knowing the places they go. Learn more about tags here.
Don’t let the end of the event be the end of the value! After the event, you have a list (that you can view and export) of people who are interested in something very specific. Use this information to re-approach your client. Consider working with your client to create an email, which you can target specifically to event attendees, with an offer.
Listeners can only check-in to an event once.
So we’ve installed and deployed and you’re ready to announce the new program to your listeners. Make sure you’re ready. Planning your launch around a station-sponsored event, concert, single debut or core-artist album release is always a good idea, simply because it affords you the opportunity to incorporate related premiums (tickets, CDs, merch, etc) at launch. Here’s a quick checklist you should review before you invite your listeners to participate:
Are all your graphic assets in place?
Do you have assets ready to post on the station’s official site and social, directing people to the sign-up URL, and/or the mobile app download links?
Ad(s) on user homepage
Promotional Image on user homepage
Are auctions in place, both big-ticket premiums and low-dollar smaller items?
Do you have a least a couple of surveys waiting for new members?
Do you have an ongoing event or two posted? This is not mandatory, but the more available content you can provide for launch, the better!