SBD/December 8, 2011/Events and Attractions

IMG Intercollegiate Athletic Forum: Ticketing Changes Help School Reach New Markets

Rapid changes in ticketing technology have helped universities dig deeper into both existing and untapped markets, panelists said. Univ. of Tennessee Senior Associate AD of External Operations Chris Fuller talked about how the school has handled recent changes. He said, "We moved forward with an integration with StubHub, so we got into the secondary market in a measured way. It was really designed to make things more convenient for our customers, with the ability to move and exchange tickets on their own.” StubHub Dir of Business Development & Partnerships Danielle Maged said of the company getting more involved in college athletics, “Where there is a school that is willing in the NCAA space to participate in that revenue stream, get sponsorship dollars, get data ... people are out there transacting. It’s happening, so you can either choose to participate in it or it’s just going to happen without you. So we like to include everyone.” Univ. of Michigan CMO Hunter Lochmann talked about using social media for selling tickets for non-revenue sports: “It’s been a great channel for us. We’ve sold about 120,000 through social media. The smartest thing I did was hire a director of digital marketing.” Ticketmaster North America COO Jared Smith added, “From a sales channel standpoint ... we saw a 400% increase year on year in the percentage of our online sales that came from a mobile device.” As for how realignment could affect ticket sales, IMG College Senior VP & Chief Innovation Officer Mark Dyer said, “It could be troublesome to lose regional rivalries. As a matter of fact you almost can’t use regional and conferences in the same sentence now, with some of the moves.”
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