Theatres are not exempt from the transition away from paper to electronics. Tickets are increasingly purchased, confirmed, and delivered through an online platform. These trends are fast moving, but incredibly important to consumers. Here are five of the trends we notice happening in electronic event ticketing technology as theatres of all sizes move away from the paper-and-pen method:
Mobile tickets with a scan code
You’ve probably been on the consumer end of this trend already. Most tickets are now delivered electronically and instead of a ticket stub, you get a box with black and white squiggles. On the day of your performance, you’ll present the ticket-taker with that box, they’ll scan for a code, and you’ll move on to find your seat. This seems to be the strengthening trend, eliminating the need for paper tickets (Find our predictions for mobile event ticketing through 2023 today).
Customize the night
A growing trend we’ve noticed is the option for guests to customize their entire experience, not just the show, in one place. This means that websites are making other offers available to their audiences, so the guest makes one transaction and secures their entire night’s itinerary. This can be done by partnering with other groups to offer additional experiences like dinner, night-caps, or after-shows. A good example of this is Chicago’s The Magic Parlour starring Dennis Watkins. Depending on the show you choose, you have the option to add a prix-fixed, 3-course dinner at the restaurant in the hotel where the show takes place, and you can also consider attending the Encore Room after the final show of the night. This allows audiences to buy up to three experiences in one place, customizing the whole night through.
Guests have almost always been able to make note of a seat preference. However, the technology trend now allows people to see exactly where their seats are on a virtual map before purchasing. Some sites even provide a 360 degree view of the seating options (this is more common in large venues like stadiums). Movie theatres have adopted this seat-choosing trend, too, allowing their audiences to choose and reserve seats ahead of time online.
Shifting Service Fees
Service fees are up for debate. Keep an eye out to see where the conversation goes, but for right now, fees are at the discretion of the organization. Patrons are starting to voice concerns with the practice, though, because of misleading headlines on sites that list ticket prices before those fees are calculated. (Find our take on the matter here). If you hear feedback from your audiences that they are displeased with any applied fees, take that into consideration.
Organizational Uses for Ticket Tech.
We’ve mentioned it before, we’ll mention it again: if your organization invests in a ticketing system, make sure it works for the whole administrative team. In the modern age of systems, most are able to offer benefits like class registration (proof here, TicketPeak is already on it!) and donor tracking for your development team.
By the time you read this, it’s possible there will already be five new trends, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to keep up! There is value in following industry trends to make sure your organization stays competitive with other similar-sized theatres in the region. Stay current and informed to make the best decision for your company to thrive in an ever-changing, technological environment.