SBD/November 6, 2013/Franchises

Cavaliers' New Ticketing Strategies Paying Dividends, Topping Last Year's Sales

Cavaliers fans exceeded their '12-13 season total for individual ticket sales
The Cavaliers' revised season- and single-game ticket strategies "are paying early dividends this fall," according to Kevin Kleps of CRAIN'S CLEVELAND BUSINESS. Single-game sales this season already have "exceeded the season total from all of last year, which is more impressive when you consider that individual tickets for this season have been on sale for less than a month." The Cavaliers in '12-13 "for the first time split single-game ticket sales into two stages," citing historical data which showed that "during the initial preseason selling period, a 'significant number' of single-game tickets for contests that occurred in the second half of the season were bought by ... ticket brokers and other ticket resellers." The team believes that "delaying single-game sales for contests played in the last three months of the season prevents ... brokers on the secondary market from snapping up most of the available seats for the marquee dates on the schedule." The Cavs said that individual ticket purchases in the first 24 days of the '13-14 on-sale period "exceeded the season total for 2012-13 -- a figure that included the sales for the first and second halves of the home schedule." The team said that group deposits "have jumped 200% over the like period" in '12. Also, renewals among existing group buyers "are up 5% compared with the like period" in '12. The Cavaliers rank "in the top five in the league's 'team website metric rankings.'" The franchise in January "launched Wine & Gold United, a membership club for season-ticket holders," and said that new revenue it has generated this season "has doubled the 2012-13 total for new business generated by season-ticket holders" (CRAIN'S CLEVELAND BUSINESS, 11/4 issue).

MEMBERSHIP HAS ITS PRIVILEGES: Kleps wrote the Cavaliers have "transformed their season-ticket membership into a '365-day-a-year-relationship,' and they have a big logo on the court to prove it." The "All For One. One For All." decal was "adorned with the name of each Wine & Gold United member." Pieces of the court "now have the names of each season-ticket holder." Members of the club have their "say on several game-night features." Cavs President of Business Operations Kerry Bubolz said, "There were four halftime acts, international acts, and they got to pick which one they wanted. There were two different types of burgers, and they picked one they wanted us to serve. There were different Cold Stone Creamery flavors they got to choose from. They got to select the design of our opening night T-shirt that was modeled by the Scream Team" (CRAINSCLEVELAND.com, 11/6).
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