Improving ASB’s marketing problem

Although ASB loses money, MCHS maintains a higher attendance rate at dances than other schools do.

Jessie Ortiz

Although ASB loses money, MCHS maintains a higher attendance rate at dances than other schools do.

Jessie Ortiz, Multimedia Editor

Recently, ASB has been receiving criticism from the student body due to the lack of sales from Winter Formal. In hopes to restore said losses, ASB has a fundraiser by selling chocolates. If ASB was to reassess their marketing strategy, the participation problem, addressed by Spellbinder staff writer Rebecca Guerrero in this article , could have been potentially avoided.

During the final stretch of the Sadie Hawkins dance ticket sales, ASB implemented the down payment method. This tactic proved to be highly effective, and helped reach the 80 students goal to have Sadies hosted at Dave and Busters. Students had to only pay $5 to ensure their spot at the dance. This made the $30 overall payment more palatable to the students. “I was going to buy it either way, but I didn’t have $30 with me. When I heard I could do the $5, I was like, ‘Oh my God yes,’” said junior Nayeli Playas. If ASB didn’t offer this, possible attendees like Playas would have been lost. If ASB utilized this tactic earlier, would it have affected Winter Formal sales?

There are three techniques that ASB can implement to boost participation: urgency, appealing to emotions, and building rapport.

Creating a sense of urgency is an effective technique that many reputable companies use. An ad from your favorite company stating, “GET 20% OFF YOUR NEXT PURCHASE FOR THE NEXT 24 HOURS!” is an example of this. ASB can do something similar by making a countdown announcing how many days are left to sell their tickets, and having an increasing price to make students want to buy their tickets earlier. This, paired with a down-payment, can encourage students to purchase their tickets earlier. When asked about varying the prices of their events as they get closer, Aaron Teran, ASB President of Saddleback High, said, “…people will buy the ticket earlier because they are cheaper, and when the event gets closer, people will spend the money to go, even though their friends bought tickets earlier.”

Any experienced marketer and salesperson knows that appealing and selling to emotions is far more effective than selling to logic. Take L’Oreal’s motto, “Because I’m Worth It,” for example. L’Oreal uses emotions to make their customers feel empowered when they purchase their products. ASB can do the same by having one-on-one conversations with students by sharing anecdotes and promising that they can have the same experience by attending their events.

Finally, ASB can build rapport to end the so called “corruption,” addressed in this article. By building rapport (their relationship with the student body) the students would begin to put trust in ASB that their events will be the best they can be and that they will be enjoyable. Apple is a great example of this. No matter how ridiculous the price, loyal customers return to purchase phone model after model. ASB can achieve this connection by making friends with students and having better communication with their events. A heightened sense of transparency can used to build trust too; sharing data and involving students in the decision process can strengthen rapport. Although ASB isn’t as large or powerful as Apple, they can replicate the same effect they have on their customers.

I’d like to end it on this note. Although it seems our ASB is hitting an all time low, it is performing better than other schools in the district. When compared to Saddleback, our attendance rate at events is much higher. About 9% of their school attended their Sadies, whereas, our school has about a 30% attendance rate at our dances. Just to put this into context, that’s about 100 students from their school and 100 students from our school. When comparing our school to other schools, we have three options to avoid losing money. Either increasing attendance rates, cutting back on costs, or increasing prices. When asked for his say, Mr. Ramos, ASB Advisor, said, “We need to cut back on dinner. Winter Formal and Prom at other schools don’t offer that.” He also commented that they don’t have venues like ours often, with Sadies being an exception.