This next niche idea can be a really fun and lucrative one especially if you live in a big city.
The idea here is to create a local event site with a focused specialty or theme (music, tech, luxury, etc.) and monetize with sponsored content.
This post will examine the opportunity and discuss how best to approach it.
Living in NYC, there's a lot to do. One way I figure out which events are worth going to is by relying on several NYC-themed event sites.
Some of my favorites include:
Watch My Video Walk-through of This Niche
I shot a video examining this niche- including a site review of the 5 event sites above using Ahrefs. You can watch it below.
Indeed, these sites curate NYC-area events in different ways.
For example, Gary's Guide focuses on startup, entrepreneurship, business, venture capital, digital-media events. The Printup List focuses on underground, cultural and musical events. The Skint focuses on free and inexpensive events. Guest of a Guest, by contrast, focuses on ultra-high-end events like invite-only parties and celebrity happenings. Brooklyn Based caters to the Brooklyn hipster- not as high-end as Guest of a Guest.
This comic by Tony Wolf introduces our new series, In Transit, reflecting on how we move around our city through essays, illustrations and articles. Check out more of his Greenpoint of View here. You can also follow him on Instagram and Twitter @tonywolfness. I've been a comic book fan my entire life.
In this way, these sites have discovered interesting ways of curating local area events that the big players like Meetup and Eventbrite just can't. In the process, they develop a core following- an audience who routinely visit for updates and trust the resources the sites market to them.
Not Just Events
Guest of a Guest and Brooklyn Based are also interesting because they are not just event-based. They also editorialize on culture, food and fashion. This is another interesting consideration- your event site could be a pure event list like Gary's Guide or, in addition, explore broader community affairs.
If you're going it alone, this might be a lot to take on- so perhaps curating events can be a good starting point.
It's important to understand that while these sites will often link to popular event ticketing platforms, it's to book the event- not to discover it. So, don't be overwhelmed by a site like Meetup.com. While an excellent site and app, your human touch is a powerful competitive advantage.
With founders Amanda Bradford Venue (The League), Danielle Strachman & Mike Gibson (1517 Fund), Brett Hagler (New Story), Josh Miller (FarmShots), Ryan Smith (LeafLink), Kristen Hadeed (Student Maid), Nigel Eccles (CEO, FanDuel), Cindy Whitehead (CEO, The Pink Ceiling), Jason Fiefer (Editor in Chief, Entrepreneur Mag), Allyson Dias (Program Mgr, Thiel Fellowship).
Word Of Mouth Power
And, think about this: whenever I go to an event from Gary's Guide, I often end up telling the host and other people at the event that I discovered the event on Gary's Guide- this word of mouth confers huge authority on his site.
This is an unorthodox, old-school way of getting traffic and building brand awareness. I've come to rely on these sites- Gary's Guide in particular. It filters out all the noise from event platforms like Eventbrite, which is often plagued by spammy webinars and lacks effective filtering and discoverability options.
Read stories, find parties and view photos of people and celebrities at exclusive events - delivered to you daily by Guest of a Guest Global editors
Gary's Guide, for example, succeeds despite not being mobile friendly and despite a somewhat cluttered interface because it organizes real-time event information in a clear and dependable way. I know that every Monday its event list will be updated and that the wheat will be sorted from the chafe, so to speak.
While most of the events he lists can be found on EventBrite, it would take me hours to discover them as I sort through spammy nightclub promotions and 'financial freedom' webinars.
Is This Niche For you?
Think about where you live.
You might not be in a cultural hub like NYC, but could you provide value by becoming a one-stop resource for local area events? Could you niche down and curate tech events, cheap events, luxury events, cultural events?
Maybe you live in a remote location- you can still profile the activities of a nearby big city.
Cheap Content: The Holy Grail
Plus, since you're merely aggregating content (the events), it's really cheap to produce these event guides.
Once you figure out a process, you can even outsource a lot of it.
If you haven't read my other niche reports, one of my favorite recipes for building a successful online business is leveraging cheap content. When I first started building sites, I was recently unemployed after the startup I was part of failed. So I was extremely cost-conscious. If you're on a budget, this could be a smart opportunity to pursue- this curated event lists won't take that long to do.
And you can even use a Virtual Asssistant to help compile them on a weekly basis once you figure out which resources you want to pull event info from.
Become A VIP
And, think about this...
Once you get big enough, you'll start getting invited to ticketed events and even get VIP treatment.
This could become a really fun and lucrative niche with an added social benefit.
With some diligence you can get traction with local users who want a Gary's Guide for their home town- a destination site that is a one-stop resource for the week's best events.
Once you get some traction and build up an email list- your audience will become extremely valuable to anyone who wants to regionally target their advertising. Say a new sushi restaurant is opening up in downtown Ohio- you can tacfully promote it to your audience in exchange for sponsorship.
Perhaps a musical act you love is coming to town- you might get free tickets for yourself and giveaway tickets for your audience just for promoting it in your newsletter and on your site.
An Alternative Approach
An alternative way of conceptualizing this site is to create a national resource for particular events. For example, you could become the resource for legal seminars, the resource for veterinary events, the resource for event marketing professionals. It's definitely another method to consider.
Event Keyword Research
Below, I used Ahrefs.com to examine some of the U.S. event-related keyword volume. This really isn't an SEO play, but it's interesting to see the searches that are being conducted- it might help prime your imagination.
- Generally not a super-fast path to monetization
- Not a strong SEO play- you'll have to hustle to get exposure, rather than wait to rank in the search engines