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Pricing

Sometimes People Prefer to Pay More

Terence McFarland, his team, and volunteers did a great job with LA Stage Day on Saturday.I had a group of eight or 10 very enthusiastic listeners for my discussion of pricing. It was late in the day and there was math involved, so given that, the energy was great. I talked about Revenue Per Seat and the potential dangers in managing by Average Ticket Price. We also had time to open the discussion up to any and all questions...

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Pricing

Even a “Free” Ticket Isn’t Free

The price of a ticket is much more than just the amount of money they give you to be allowed in the venue.I don’t just mean parking or the babysitter or the other legitimate hard costs that might come with a trip to see an event, though those are very real too.Recently, we talked about realizing that we are, as an industry, on the wrong side of the Convenience Gap compared to other forms of live entertainment, and I...

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Bright Ideas

Variable Versus Dynamic Pricing

Do you have one of those friends who can’t resist correcting people on the proper use of “who” versus “whom”?  Perhaps you don’t because you are that person. Regardless, you’re all welcome here.Personally, I let the who/whom thing go because I’ve never misunderstood anything said to me because of it.Other frequently mistaken words though aren’t as harmless. They have the potential to get you all mixed up, crazy, and worse still, losing out on money from ticket sales.So we’re...

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Pricing

How Much Does it Cost to “Make” a Ticket?

Let’s start answering that question by asking a different one.How much does it cost to make a sandwich?Let’s say that you buy bread, condiments, meat and cheese for about $2 and each time you turn on your sandwich press, it costs you $.50. Ignoring labor costs for a moment, it costs you $2.50 to make a sandwich. If you sell it for $6, you’ll probably end up with a profit after you pay for everything else a business needs...

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Pricing

The Fastest Path to Devaluing Your Tickets

It’s simple, really. Build a good email list for your venue/show/organization and send them discounts to your own show.If you want to Turbo-devalue your tickets, always follow the same or a similar cadence in how you do this. I know of a major organization (that I’m not even going to name or say the genre but trust me when I say that everyone who will ever possibly read this is familiar with them) that at one point had a...

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Pricing

Overvaluing Premium Sales

Venues have gotten much more sophisticated in the last seven or eight years at creating and selling “premium” tickets and ticket packages. I was reading recently about the Seattle Mariners’ successful program to do this recently, and it made me give this issue some thought.As I’ve said many times on this issue, I’m for it. Provided you don’t punish people for not buying premium and you legitimately deliver a ‘premium’ value, this should be a sustainable and positive way...

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Pricing

The Easiest Mistake in the World to Make About Pricing …

… is thinking there is such a thing as a “discount buyer.”And I can prove it to you.Next time you’re gathering six or eight of your co-workers for a meeting and have a few minutes before it gets started, do this little experiment.Ask the group if any of them have a band or musical act that they really, really like but that most people in the room aren’t likely to know. Most people will have one.Pick one of these...

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Pricing

March Madness Ticket Prices Going Through the Roof

Long wait for a regional final + hot local team = most expensive single-admission college basketball event MSG has ever hosted.Here's the news from SeatGeek:"It's been over 50 years since Madison Square Garden hosted NCAA Basketball Tournament games, and getting the local underdog in the bracket has only furthered the frenzy. Friday's doubleheader is the most expensive single-admission college basketball event MSG has ever hosted.Tickets for UVa-Michigan State and UConn-Iowa State are going for $355 each on average, coming...

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Pricing

“The Lion King” + Dynamic Pricing = No. 1

While we're on the topic today of math, ticket prices and calculating revenue, Patrick Healy's article in The New York Times yesterday points out how "The Lion King" has used dynamic pricing to become the top-grossing show on Broadway in 2013.Is your organization using dynamic pricing? 

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Pricing

Should Live Entertainment Be $1?

Chris Jones believes that the arts and live entertainment industry should abandon the middle class in favor of serving the high end and the low end. He believes this because this is the way that the rest of the economy is going, in his view, and therefore it's incumbent for live entertainment to follow suit.The metaphor he uses is the Dollar Tree store, where all kinds of potentially useful and high-quality stuff is sold for a dollar. He asks,...

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