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New website corners the NZ events market

27 April 2006

New website corners the NZ events market

In just three months, EVENTFINDER has become New Zealand’s definitive events website.

Frustration was the catalyst for the inception of Eventfinder. Founding Director, Michael Turner, was continually frustrated by reading through Monday’s newspaper only to find reviews of events he would have attended had he known about them.

“It was frustrating not having a single, authoritative online resource where you could look up coming events from around the country across a broad subject range,” said Michael.

“We came up with the idea based on the premise that people would get out more if they knew what was on.”

Over the first six months of 2005 Michael and his team thoroughly researched the online events market and wrote a comprehensive and savvy business plan. Utilising his ten years’ experience in the IT industry, mainly as an Internet Strategist, Michael and his team quickly realised people wanted a user-friendly, one-stop method for finding events.

“Most people don’t know what they want to go to until they see it advertised,” said Michael. “That’s why we came up with the system for navigating by location, date, and categories like Arts, Music and Sports.”

After seven months development and testing, the Eventfinder site went live on 23 January 2006 and traffic has grown dramatically from day one. The site has attracted over 20,000 users since then, and in March alone served over 42,000 pages to more than 12,000 users.

“We were a bit taken by surprise by the immediate surge in popularity,” Michael said. “We’ve already had to add more hardware to cope with demand.”

One of the differentiators of the site is that businesses and individuals can sign up for an account on the spot and start adding their own events.
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“We found during our research that businesses want a cost-effective and immediate channel for promoting events. Compared to other media like newspaper and magazine advertising, Eventfinder allows organisers and promoters to access a huge audience at a very low cost. Details can be updated at anytime, day or night, at no extra cost, and changes are immediate.”

Eventfinder is currently offered in five plans that range from “free” (which lets you manage one event) to $99.90/month for the 100-event Premium Plan. Options are also available to include images, organisation or company profiles, and links to event websites and booking agencies.

“We insisted on keeping a free option, so communities and charities without any marketing budget can still get their event noticed by the wider public,” said Michael. “We’ve helped promote events for charities like the Starship Foundation and organisations like the Auckland Philharmonia, Royal New Zealand Ballet and Soccer New Zealand.”

“It’s a zero-risk option for business, as account plans can be upgraded or downgraded at any time, so it can be tailored to your budget and events schedule.”

Eventfinder – you need to get out more.


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