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Bright Ideas

Monty Python to Broadcast its Last Show

In July, the legendary comedy troupe will provide another hint to the live entertainment industry about what the future could look like by broadcasting The Last Night of Monty Python from the O2 Arena in London to theaters all around the world.If you are still wondering whether the business model-broadening powers of live broadcast aren’t real, here’s the key piece of the article I just linked: “Originally, members John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Michael Palin, and Terry Jones had...

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Customer Service

The Wrong Side of the Convenience Gap

I’m going to ask you a question, and I’d like you to be honest with me about the answer. (Especially since you don’t actually have to say anything.)Imagine it’s lunchtime and you’re at home. Now think of two things that you sometimes eat: One that you eat because it’s convenient to get or inexpensive, and one that you really, really like. One that’s fine and meets your lunchtime needs, and one that you really enjoy.Got those in your mind?So...

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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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News

Ticketing System Implementation Leads to a Riot

I often say that one of the wonderful things about working in live entertainment is that it’s not a matter of life and death. And while people who work in making sure venues are safe have a reasonable beef with that statement, even they would probably get what I meant.Ticketing is typically an even safer occupation. Nobody expects danger from the roll-out of a new system. Annoyed season ticket holders having to adjust to a new website perhaps, but...

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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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Experience

Why Live Event Venues Are Never Full for Long, and Why That’s OK

Fifty percent of seats for live entertainment go unsold. Or is it 40 percent, or maybe 35? Different analysts and executives from major ticketing organizations have been quoted over the years at different numbers, but let’s just agree that it’s a substantial percentage, and a staggering raw number.But it’s also a classic “glass (or venue) half-full or half-empty” kind of question. Is the unsold seat total a bad thing, or is it more complex than that?Let’s work through it....

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Selling Out With

Selling Out With Jack Reuler

Is "free cheaper than cheap"? For Mixed Blood Theatre in the Twin Cities, it seems to be. Its admission initiative called "Radical Hospitality" allows anyone to attend a show for free. Three seasons of the campaign is paying off with increased popularity and donations.After hearing about the program on HowlRound.com, we spoke with Mixed Blood Theatre artistic director Jack Reuler. He shared further insights into what aspects of the program are working, what they're continuing to tweak and what...

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Marketing

How to Avoid Big Mistakes With Ticket Sales Marketing

Lately, we’ve been talking a lot about ticket sales marketing and the importance of knowing when to kill a program that's just not working. To help you evaluate whether a marketing program is successful -- or if it needs cancelling -- we've put together four posts that'll walk you through the process. Take a look:• First, a reality check: If a marketing campaign is working, then you should be able to see the results pretty clearly.• But, how do...

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ICYMI

In Case You Missed It

Each week we’ll share a collection of articles we think are well worth reading. And now, in case you missed them …• The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra successfully completed its $5 million emergency fundraising drive. Find out the breakdown of how they got it and their next steps for fiscal health.• The Canadian Museum of History, formerly the Museum of Civilization and Canada’s largest, most-visited museum, is launching a fundraising campaign, but it has set the bar very low for...

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News

What Does Success Mean to You?

It’s only a slight exaggeration to say that all of Silicon Valley is currently devoted to creating a hit app that gets huge overnight, develops a worldwide presence and becomes incredibly valuable. The truth is that it’s probably only 80%.That’s the subtext of what “success” means in that ecosystem right now for many people and in the zeitgeist of the place.And yet, Vietnamese game developer Dong Nguyen doesn’t define success this way. How do I know that? Because he...

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