Case Study: How Submersion Saw 1230% ROI

Table of Contents

Overview of Submersion

Submersion Festival is an event produced by The Rust Music (NYC) & Aspire Higher (PHL). These teams joined forces to bring together electronic music fans from all across the US for a carefully curated event – with handpicked talent from across the globe such as KOAN Sound, Emancipator, Luke Vibert (along with his Wagon Christ alias), Chase & Status, and over 70 other acts. The ones to lead the event were co-producers Jesse Boyer & Ryan Karolyi along with their seasoned staff.

The Problem

This was our second installment of the Submersion Festival. We wanted to expand from our first year in center city Philadelphia at the 23rd Street Armory & level up festivities across the board. For our 2nd year, we decided to do a weekend camping festival at Paradise Lakes in Hammonton, NJ.

With that said, we needed a way to reach more fans & drive more ticket sales as we grew into a multi-day event. 

We wanted to amplify our marketing efforts online & offline to reach as many people as possible but also needed to do this on a budget. It’s important to note, we are a small first-year camping festival & every dollar counts. We didn’t want to be throwing money at FB ads & hoping for the best like we would have done…maybe 5 years ago because FB really converted back then. But things have changed. 

Brands can’t just look to social media to sell all of their tickets & we know our strongest marketing tool is our community. Word-of-mouth marketing is a HUGE driver for us:

1. People to find out about artists & events. 

2. People to make purchases. 

“I can’t tell you how many times, we have attended a show or festival because of our friend’s influence.” Jesse Boyer

So we decided we needed to expand our field marketing team & small online group of promoters into a larger ambassador program. We wanted to give people a chance to earn free tickets & rewards for helping us spread the word. 

But we did not want to manage this manually. We had managed street teams & promo in the past. It is a nightmare without a platform to help manage it all. We couldn’t spend hours tracking down ambassadors and collecting proof of shared content or posters being put up around different cities.

The Solution

We were not strangers to SocialLadder. We had seen how it had worked for other festivals like Imagine & Okeechobee, so we knew it could work for us. Even though we are a smaller festival, we have a mighty community of loyalists. Our team knew if we gave them a chance to support us & earn rewards along the way, they would be stoked. 

SocialLadder was the top pick because it was the only platform that combined referral marketing, social media marketing, & field marketing. We knew it was important to track all of this in one place for transparency for us & a streamlined experience for our ambassadors. 

It allowed us to track everything easily, manage rewards, & report on performance – it was exactly what we needed

The Results

In just 90 days & with only 56 ambassadors, our community drove the following value:  

  • Over 32k in sales
  • More than 5k in EMV via ambassadors UGC & social media actions 
  • Avg value per ambassador was $1,171
  • 1230% ROI 

As for field marketing, we could easily track & credit our ambassadors for handing out flyers, promoting around college campuses, & putting up posters around high-traffic areas like record shops, coffee shops, bars, venues, etc. 

Our amazing team at Ticketing Co also had no issue getting this all set up to be fully automated & integrated for all sales tracking. 

“SocialLadder saved us so much time, allowed us to connect with our community, & helped us make the 2nd year of Submersion a success.” – Jesse Boyer

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