6 Event Lessons You Can Learn from Goat Yoga

Over the weekend I tried something I have never done before: Baby Goat Yoga. It was hosted by a local farm: Ferrari Farms here in Reno, Nevada. (Major props – it was creative and an excellent experience!) I first heard about it via word of mouth from a friend who saw it on Facebook. When she invited me, I knew I couldn’t miss it.

To an animal lover like myself, my heart nearly exploded.

I love baby animals. I love being active. As do most women in the 20-60 year old age range. (And, to be fair, in my class, almost half of the participants were male.)

The event was a blast. (How could it not be? It had about 12 baby, 3-week-old goats roaming around while we did gentle flow yoga!) And, it got me thinking about the importance of fun, innovative events like this to marketing mixes.

The best marketing today is personalized, connective (makes you feel like you are part of something), fun, and leaves you feeling great.

Baby Goat Yoga had all the elements. So, I thought I’d share what made the event GREAT from a marketing standpoint, and offer some suggestions of what they could have done a little better to capture the excitement about the event.

What made Baby Goat Yoga Great

Socially captivating and easily shareable

This event was MADE to be shared. The target market is a group who is already apt to share on social (women) and it involves a subject that just SCREAMS “Share Me!” (Baby animals and yoga!!) Who doesn’t want to participate, tell all their friends, encourage people to join them, and post photos after of all the fun?!

Leading up to the event, the Farm teased it with pictures of the baby goats to capture the attention of the community.

The owners created the event on Facebook and had the details there with the ability to share the event, mark yourself as interested or going, and get your tickets. They were so successful (and did so without promoting the event or paying for it to be advertised) that the two classes they offered got sold out! They continued to post about the event leading up to the day. And they did a follow up post, using the Poll function in Facebook to ask if they should repeat the event. (91% of respondents said YES! as you can see down below!).

What is really special is that this family owned farm created a fun, connective event that was designed for people who already love social sharing. They got an extra marketing boost from all the people who liked, shared, and commented on the post, who didn’t even actually go to the event! They offered two classes, both of which sold out, but their reach was far beyond the attendees.

The event worked so well because it was an experience. It was easy to do (they made it clear that even novices were more than able to come and participate), and it was a fun way for participants to do what people love the most – talk about and show the world who they are (if you are an active person who loves animals then this is how you demonstrate that).

The Farm worked with what they had

The event worked well because the Farm used what they had. They made sure it was within their realm and means. They didn’t decide that as a farm they were going to have a tech company come in and do a computer programming class; they kept it true and authentic to their core messaging.

They take care of animals. This class is in the spring when many baby animals are born. They have a large space already available, so they were able to hold a lot of people for yoga, a popular activity that many people already do on a regular basis. They didn’t overstretch themselves. They stayed true.

The Price Was Right

Tickets to participate in the class were $25 a piece. It’s not exactly cheap, but it’s still within reason for the perfect people to come. At that price point, you’re not going to get a bunch of young college kids who don’t have a lot of money. You’re going to get families and professionals who might take a look at your farm and have other events they could book in mind like weddings, birthdays, and celebrations.

Plus, I’m going to guess that there were about 25 participants in each class. That means this 45 minute event brought in $625 each time they held it. The yoga teacher was a family friend, and for 45 minutes of work, the labor cost couldn’t have been too much. Even with the two owners walking around during the class, assisting with goat clean up and maintenance, this event brought in a lot more than it cost to run.

If you go even further and evaluate that the marketing was free and gained widespread recognition for the farm, this was definitely a financially successful event.

What could have made it even better for the Farm

Increased engagement during the event

One thing missing was direct interaction and engagement from the owners with participants. I think there were a few missed opportunities that could have made the event even better.

Doing a small welcome speech with a short pitch about booking the Farm for future events would have not only been appropriate, it would have been helpful. I didn’t realize you could book the venue until researching their Facebook page after the event.

Even just putting out some printed materials on a table afterward, a business card or brochure, would have made a big impact on the participants.

Interaction before, during, and after on social media

While they did post about the event before and did a follow up post asking if they should hold the event again, they could have capitalized on the opportunity further by interacting with users’ social posts with comments, likes, and shares. (They did end up liking a post I tagged them in on Facebook, but their impact can go much further if they leave an engaging comment that draws others in and showcases who they are.)

Facebook post from the farm asking users if they should run the Goat Yoga event again. 91% said yes.
Ferrari Farms posted about the event afterward using the Facebook Poll feature to ask people if they should run the event again.

Another option would be to create an event hashtag and encourage posting via Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter using the hashtag so all the photos and posts related to the event can easily be found.

They could have also taken their own photos or connected with the attendees on Facebook and Instagram and featured users’ photos.

They could have “gone live” on Facebook during the event, which surely would have captured the attention of many on that Sunday afternoon.

If they really wanted to be social media pros, they could have taken photos of participants so participants could focus on having fun, and created an album, letting attendees know how and where to follow them to access the photos. They would have gotten a lot of socially engaged new followers!

Partnered with a nonprofit to raise awareness and get media attention

From my time at the SPCA of Northern Nevada, I can assure you that the local news would have LOVED to come out and cover this event. If the Farm had decided that even a small portion of the proceeds would go to a nonprofit organization or would be donated to animal research or education, and sent a small press release, the Farm would have been featured on TV and radio.

When I worked at the SPCA of Northern Nevada, I helped to get this furry event covered by local media for Sparkle Yoga. It was called Doga – Doggy Yoga, and it was the grand opening of the yoga studio! Events like this are covered often by local news. Check out the story here!

This kind of a fun, connective event, held on a slow news weekend, is just the type of story that warms the hearts of community members.

Baby goats grow up…but I’d still do yoga with this guy.

So there you have it, 6 lessons we can take away from Baby Goat Yoga. I absolutely loved the creativity of this event, the way they used what they had, the target market they selected, and the potential for even further social reach, and PR. What a great, inspirational case study!

Have you recently attended a great event? What was it? I’m always looking for inspiration and I love analyzing what makes events great. Share with me in the comments down below!

Thank you for reading, I hope you found this post entertaining and helpful.

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