Whether you’re grabbing sushi or boozy milkshakes, seeing a show at The Hamilton LIVE means treating yourself. This live music venue, located in the former Garfinckel’s Department Store, a site on the National Register of Historic Places, is the picture of opulence. Vaulted ceilings, marble fountains, it’s the perfect place to enjoy Grammy-award wining Latin jazz or hippie jam bands, says Keith Berquist.

“We’ll actually clear out the tables and chairs and sort of have a dance floor in front,” Berquist tells ToneDen. “Everyone’s up and grooving.”

Berquist is the Marketing Manager at The Hamilton. Located just blocks from the Treasury and the White House, the club is sumptuous and surprisingly intimate, especially given its grand façade. With a capacity that tops out at 700 people, The Hamilton is where DC music-lovers go when they want to embrace that upscale vibe.

Berquist came to The Hamilton from events giant AEG; he’s been working in music marketing since college. But these days, he says, he’s doing more sophisticated things than ever before, in large part thanks to ToneDen.

“I used to dread having to build Facebook campaigns. Even though I was good at it, it was time-consuming,” he says. “And I hated the ‘guesstimation.’ We weren’t doing conversion tracking before [using ToneDen], so I was basically monitoring click-through rate, trying to infer how many tickets I was selling.”

“It’s like moving from the Stone Age to the Bronze Age.”

Using ToneDen's Event Content Playbook

Last month, The Hamilton tried out of one ToneDen’s new Playbooks. “I was really into it,” Berquist admits. “It was so cool to see.” The Hamilton’s Playbook had two parts: first, it announced a contest where they’d give away two tickets — to any show of the winner’s choosing. Then, people commented on the post to opt into The Hamilton’s Facebook Messenger list, which sent them a message with a link to enter the contest.

That’s not to mention the 3,549 people their contest reached or the 128 people who ultimately subscribed to their Messenger list — a whopping 92% opt-in rate.

Berquist couldn’t have been more thrilled with the results. “We actually got a positive ROI, which I was surprised by because the goal wasn’t to sell tickets: the goal was to get people to sign up to be Facebook Messenger followers. But people were still buying tickets, so that was awesome.” In fact, people bought nine tickets, which amounted to a 16x ROI for The Hamilton.

This Messenger base the Playbook helped The Hamilton build, Berquist thinks, is key.

“It’s free, which is always a benefit. When you’re working with small budgets, the more free things you can do, the better … And the open and click-through rates on Messenger is so high. If people are starting to get tired of email, jumping to the next medium is a way to have that first-mover advantage. I see Messenger as a helpful nudge. The nature of a Facebook message is shorter copy. It’s quippier.”

Getting a peek into the next frontier of social marketing is just one reason Berquist recommends ToneDen. “It will use your time more effectively, it will save you money that you can allocate elsewhere,” he says, “and you have the resource of a team who know all the latest trends and are there to help answer your questions or introduce you to the latest happenings.”

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