I’m sure many of you (like us) are asking why, in an age where high demand commerce plays out on Black Friday and Cyber Monday with over 100 million shopping online for 2 days, how is it that ticketing is still the anomaly?
Its of course hugely frustrating for all involved however you can’t help but think the ‘way’ ticketing, in particular presales are done have become a victim of their own success. After more than 15 years of being operated in the same way, isn’t it time for rethink before fans give up entirely?
Disheartened fans may take a long time to forgive these moments and it’s a long way back to loyalty from there. Ticketing companies might take the heat for now but how long can artists continue to risk their brand reputations and the opportunity cost of not really knowing their fans.
Artists have been selling tickets for a while now on the same platforms, yet these 3rd parties still haven’t found a way to use the data to ‘verify’ fans, in a more human and real way.
Less is more right now
Afterall, it’s the loyal fan’s that are disrespected with their time being wasted over and over again. Fans are the lifeblood of the music industry, in the current climate we should be making it cheaper, simpler and easier (not harder) to attend live shows.
Its high time for some innovation in how to get tickets without sitting in a queue of bots, like fools, sweating and swearing at our laptops at 9am.
In our view adding more technology right now is only likely to make it more complicated and expensive for fans.
In reality there’s only one party that is pleased with the current ‘way’, the race against the clock doesn’t benefit fans or ticketing company staff, but the touts can’t believe their luck.
They are absolutely thrilled everyone is still using speed as an advantage to securing tickets. And then throw a presale code into the mix, a code, hmmm who might that benefit, a hardcore fan? No, a bot of course.
It’s time to rewire the experience
We feel the focus of the commentary surrounding the last couple of weeks in particular is all wrong. It’s less about the demand being too high, and more about knowing the real demand, and then being able to deliver against that. And it all starts a long time before that 9am race.
Imagine if the place that artists and fans actually hung out, the place where they shared content, where they told them about their music and involved them in everything else they create- was the same place that authenticated them and then allowed them to buy a ticket. It made sense before technology took over right? Doesn’t seem too much to ask again?
We’ve seen fan communities grow exponentially when access to tickets is one of the main reasons to sign up. In turn when artists have successfully satisfied this demand, 85% of fans said they’d recommend the experience to friends, they become advocates. This seems more enjoyable for all and much better than yet another social media storm creating 100’s of detractors.
It really can be that simple. Giving a safe environment to interact, where the insights can be used to benefit the fan not the platform. This can be built up by an artist for weeks, months, and even years before they get to this high demand moment. This then puts the power and knowledge in the artists hands, to understand their true demand for tickets- and be able to plan and execute it accordingly.
Levelling the playing field
So we’ve figured out how to create the right environment for artists and their fans. Now how do we get these genuine fans tickets? After all they are the ones who will buy the album, take days off to travel to shows and be waiting in the line for just about anything artists do.
Well, let’s go back to the 9am race thing. Why don’t we take away speed being an advantage? Level out the playing field?
Create a fair window where everyone can tell the artist where they would like a ticket for, at whatever time of day that suits them, they might be working a night shift and 9am is their journey home.
Waiting rooms create panic, confusion and frustration, why can’t you just register for the tickets you want, confirm you want them with a credit card (like a hotel room or uber) and when tickets become available there’s a fair chance you get what you want.
Behind the scenes without bothering fans, there is an opportunity to use technology for good, so that when tickets are all confirmed, they end up in the hands of real fans. Just like that. No one wasted more than 90 seconds- registering. Everyone can then get back to their business- and if they were unlucky that time- it feels like slightly less of a sting that they didn’t just waste an entire day fighting robots.
The solution already exists. Fans need to advocate for it, artists need to listen to them and evolve.
Tijani Barker is Community Growth Manager at planet, to get more insights on building fan communities visit https://planet.fans/