The Aurora Winter Festival launched in 2018 as one of Canada’s biggest winter festivity attractions. Poised to open in both Vancouver and Toronto metropolitan markets, Aurora reached out to Digital Hot Sauce to build a strategy that would pique curiosity, emotionally connect with several different markets and ultimately drive ticket sales for the event.

Client: Aurora Winter Festival
Our Services: Paid search and social advertising

Our Approach

Hot Sauce developed an 8 month plan that included pre-launch awareness building, public launch amplification, and post-launch revenue generation activities. We deployed video, visual and copy based ads across YouTube, multiple display networks, Google Search Ads, as well as Facebook and Instagram. Hot Sauce also advised on website development, conversion rate optimization and set up the entire digital data & attribution reporting mechanism to track success.

Results

In the pre-launch awareness phase, our goals were to generate impressions and excitement for the event as well as begin building an “early interest” email list as well as remarketing audiences to re-engage during the event phase. Using programmatic display, native and paid social ads, we drove over 1.8 million impressions between the two cities, with a CPM of just $2.89. To keep frequency low, we consistently A/B tested different ad variations every 2 weeks, and implemented those learnings with our next iterations. Ad clicks would lead to an email capture landing page, the entries of which were used for remarketing later.

The pre-sale and event phases shared the goal of ticket sales, and utilized paid search and social campaigns. With an average order value of $63, the two cities totalled over 8 million impressions, with an average CPA (cost per transaction) of $2.16 using paid social campaigns. Paid search generated over 100,000 impressions with an average CPA of $4.26.

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