Consider Pricing Simplicity to Avoid Lost Sales

LiveNation_LogoLive Nation wins a lawsuit that was, frankly, a little nutty to begin with. The plaintiff’s claim is that, as a monopolist, Live Nation charged service fees that caused him damages and, therefore, LN should be forced to have an ‘all-in’ pricing model. The judge said, rightly, that the claim of a monopoly was irrelevant, and that whether the fees are added or part of the ‘all-in’ price, the plaintiff would be paying the same and, therefore, there were no damages.

Despite the inanity of this suit, there’s a message for those of us in the business, beyond the typical “I want to pay less” message. Prices are just one of several things about our business that create friction between the desire to buy tickets and actually going through and buying those tickets. People are confused, partly because they don’t buy in our category often enough to get used to how it’s done, but also because it is truly complex. They don’t understand the secondary market (though they use it), and they believe a whole lot of pseudo-myths and bits of misinformation (Like the idea that if you buy directly from the physical box office, you pay the lowest price available. This is something I’ve heard a lot of otherwise well-informed people say.).

So as an industry, we need to think about pricing simplicity. It’s difficult for a whole range of reasons, but the cost of the consumer-facing complexity is confusion, inertia and friction, all of which translate into lost sales.

Read about the lawsuit at Pollstar: LN Prevails In Ticketing Suit.

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