High Price Of Tickets Cited Among Greatest Barriers To Attendance

A big h/t to You’ve Cott Mail (YCM) for sending around an overview of the Culture Track 2014 report from LaPlaca Cohen, which studies the attitudes, motivators, and barriers of culturally active audiences. I’m still wading through the document but one item that should catch your attention in the YCM overview is high price as a primary barrier to attending live events.

ADAPTISTRATION-GUY-086Long time readers are well aware that ticket prices are an oft examined topic here at Adaptistration and it is looking like the Culture Track 2014 report is likely to serve as one more quantifiable nag that this issue isn’t going to go away on its own. I highly recommend taking the time to read the entire report and the sections on loyalty models and on-site participation via technology are worth special attention.

Download the Culture Track 2014 report

About Drew McManus

"I hear that every time you show up to work with an orchestra, people get fired." Those were the first words out of an executive's mouth after her board chair introduced us. That executive is now a dear colleague and friend but the day that consulting contract began with her orchestra, she was convinced I was a hatchet-man brought in by the board to clean house.

I understand where the trepidation comes from as a great deal of my consulting and technology provider work for arts organizations involves due diligence, separating fact from fiction, interpreting spin, as well as performance review and oversight. So yes, sometimes that work results in one or two individuals "aggressively embracing career change" but far more often than not, it reinforces and clarifies exactly what works and why.

In short, it doesn't matter if you know where all the bodies are buried if you can't keep your own clients out of the ground, and I'm fortunate enough to say that for more than 15 years, I've done exactly that for groups of all budget size from Qatar to Kathmandu.

For fun, I write a daily blog about the orchestra business, provide a platform for arts insiders to speak their mind, keep track of what people in this business get paid, help write a satirical cartoon about orchestra life, hack the arts, and love a good coffee drink.

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2 thoughts on “High Price Of Tickets Cited Among Greatest Barriers To Attendance

  1. I sometimes wonder about price truly being a barrier: tickets to “popular” music events seem to me to be no less expensive than classical concerts and performances. For example, the American Idol tour in Dallas (actually in Grand Prairie TX) has prices from $100 min up to $650. I know the Dallas Opera and Symphony prices are less than that – I’m a subscriber to both. Casino acts in southern Oklahoma seem to run $30 – $80 or so (based on my recall of newspaper ads) , which are a little less than the opera and symphony. I would guess it is a matter of choice, perhaps regarding a “pop” event as more “special” than classical; or the relative special-ness of the appeal of a star performer at the two events.

    • Those are good observations and a frequent point of discussion on this topic but by and large, the primary difference is repeat attendance and related frequency. Pop acts are based on a very different business model than resident performing arts orgs.

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