Yesterday, the Georgetown to Idaho Springs Half Marathon ran their "Run Like It's 1978" promotion, where they rolled back the price of registration for one day only to $15.00. If you wanted a tech t-shirt or a finisher's medal, you could pay an additional $10.00 per item.
When I read that advertising promotion, I simply thought Whiskey Tango Foxtrot. Did former JC Penney's CEO Ron Johnson take over as race director and go to his slash and burn price strategy? Do they still teach Economics 101 in the schools?
From what I can gather, ~4,667 participants registered yesterday, taking advantage of the $15.00 discount. Right now the race has 4,992 registered participants, last year they had 3,024 participants total. The promotion was so popular that Running Guru
(see comments) couldn't handle all of the traffic, some people registered for the tech t-shirt or the medal simply because they couldn't register for the race. At some point registration closed yesterday and right now they are no longer taking any registrations, which leads me to believe the race is already sold out.
Meredith Holmes Brodeur commented "Super bummed! Was in the middle of registering, and it said you closed!!! REALLY disappointed!" She was so disappointed that she used the exclamation mark three times, which equates to screaming at the top of your lungs. Sorry Meredith, but with that $15.00 discount you also get 1978 servers to with it.
I decided to go back to my analyst roots and luckily I can still run pivot tables with the best of 'em in Excel. I pulled data from Running Guru's website and did my best to compare estimated financial numbers of 2013 to 2012.
I'm estimating that while the race will grow by close to 2,000 participants, gross revenue will be down $40,000. Not only that but their variable expenses will go up to accommodate those additional participants and the race has to deal with a new situation, which is how do we plan a race for 2,000 more participants.
I was baffled yesterday about this promotion and even more so after running the numbers.