Case Study: Falkirk Gin Festival: Scaling Our Drinks Festival With Technology

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Tell us about your event. How did it get started? Who is it aimed at? How much has it grown since inception?

Harbro Events was founded in 2016 with our first event – Falkirk Whisky Festival. A long time lover of whisky, founder Andrew Ure wanted to create his own celebration of Scotland’s national drink.

After sourcing the perfect venue, a historic hall in Larbert near Falkirk, he got to work selling tickets before the exhibitors were even confirmed.

The event sold all 500 tickets within 48 hours, and it went on to be a big success, with over 20 exhibitors allowing guests to try dozens of drams and purchase them from the on-site shop, ran by Glasgow off-licence The Good Spirits Co.  

Andrew and his wife Kirsty went on to grow the gin festival to 600 people the following spring: in addition, they have a craft beer festival – Craft Beer Discovery – planned for June 30 to July 1 2017 at Falkirk Stadium, which will cater to 1500 beer lovers.

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Why did you choose to move your ticketing over to Eventbrite?

The first festival sold tickets through a website designed in-house. The initial upside of having no ticketing fees was overshadowed by the time we had to spend manually administering the ticketing process.  Many nights were spent writing envelopes; double checking addresses and dealing with tickets that went missing in the post. It was costly to print tickets and purchase envelopes and stamps – but the biggest cost was how much time it took.

Andrew took the decision to move his ticketing online after being contacted by Eventbrite. Initially hesitant as a small business with tight margins, the couple were surprised at the affordability of using Eventbrite and the benefits it brought.

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What challenge(s) has it helped you solve?

All tickets are emailed directly to the purchasers after ordering – no faffing with stamps and missing mail – and anyone that lost a ticket could have another emailed to them easily. The small fee charged, more than made up for the hassle and costs associated with posting physical tickets.

Any other benefits for your business?

On the day of the event the Eventbrite organiser app is easy to use and can scan people in quickly – no tearing tickets – and planners can rest assured that no duplicate tickets have been made as each barcode is unique.

Harbro Events have used Eventbrite for all three festivals, and plan to continue for future events, the cost is small to organisers and the benefits are huge.


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Mark Kelliher

I’m a well traveled New Zealander with a passion for music events and love sharing my knowledge of the music business. I’m also the Product Marketing Manager for Eventbrite UK.