An Inflection Point for the Performing Arts

This is a critical moment for the performing arts industry as there are noticeable shifts happening in patron purchasing behaviors. Many organizations are finding subscription sales are dwindling, patrons are deferring ticket purchases until the last moment, and donations are decreasing across the board, leading to even well-established theatres facing new mission-critical headwinds, with some closing their doors, reducing staff, or shortening their seasons. 

Now is the time to take a business-first approach and find ways to turn your organization into a profitable business while not losing sight of the importance of providing quality performing arts experiences for your patrons and community. 

Luckily, On The Stage (OTS) is here to help! It is imperative that new strategies are implemented to offset the industry-wide shifts, and OTS is answering the new challenges with a new suite of revenue-accelerating features and workflows that will enable you to engage with your patrons in more targeted ways, activate additional non-ticket revenue streams, and optimize purchase flows to maximize the dollars coming from every stage of the customer journey, all while giving your patrons a best-in-class experience.  

Today, we are thrilled to unveil our latest features, designed to seamlessly work together to streamline processes and enhance the patron experience! This is just the first step in our ongoing mission to provide you with a robust technology platform and an audience engagement toolbox that will revolutionize your organization, captivate your patrons, and secure a bright future for the industry. So, let’s dive in! 

Our Latest Features

Let’s take a look at the features included in the latest release and how they can ensure your theatre not only survives today, but thrives for years to come. 

Embeddable Ticket Widget

Our embeddable ticket widget eliminates barriers, streamlines the purchasing process, and enhances conversion rates. By embedding the ticket widget directly onto your website, patrons can seamlessly purchase tickets without navigating away to a separate page or site. Fewer clicks mean higher conversions and lower drop off, especially those new to your organization where every click counts; translating into increased ticket sales, revenue generation, and an overall better experience for your patrons.

Not only will you be able to embed OTS ticketing into your website, you will also be able to update the look and feel of the widget to match your brand with customizable fonts and colors to provide a cohesive brand experience. For one of our early adopters, using the widget reduced the clicks required to check out on mobile from 16 clicks to just 8 –  increasing conversion rates by 35%! This led to more sales and a better ticket buyer experience…a win-win for all!

Your patrons will easily be able to see show listings in either a calendar or list view and color-coded availability flags for each performance drive urgency when a show is getting close to selling out. We’ve also added Apple Pay and GooglePay to checkout and optimized it for mobile devices (since over 70% of patrons purchase on their phones), further streamlining the process and elevating the buying experience. 

Offers and Upgrades

Built seamlessly into the ticket purchasing process, this feature encourages patrons to enhance their experience by upgrading tickets or adding featured add-on items (like merch, concessions, or parking) at checkout. By presenting enticing offers at the point of purchase, organizations can maximize revenue while providing patrons with personalized options tailored to their preferences.

Designed to work with our Add-ons feature, Offers allow you to set up conditions that will prompt the patron at checkout to purchase an additional item. For instance, you can set a condition that if a patron is checking out without VIP parking in their cart, you can configure an offer to pop up and ask them if they would like to add it. With Add-ons and Offers you are limited only by your imagination, but for more ideas, be sure to check out our blog post on creative strategies to maximize profits with add-ons, while at the same time enriching the patrons’ experience and creating memories to last a lifetime.

The Upgrade feature works hand-in-hand with our ticket types. With this feature you can configure a prompt within the purchase flow to upgrade their ticket before checkout (think upgrading a regular adult ticket to VIP).

Both features provide your organization with an endless number of options to not only increase Average Order Value (AOV) but also create memorable patron experiences that will keep them coming back time and time again. 

Audience Segmentation + Mailchimp Integration

Harness the power of data-driven marketing with our Mailchimp integration. OTS will automatically send tags to Mailchimp based on past patron behavior (show attendance, donations, add-on purchases, etc) so that organizations can send targeted, effective email campaigns that resonate with their audience, driving engagement, loyalty, and, ultimately, revenue.

Not a Mailchimp user? Not a problem. With our custom fields for patron profiles, you’re able to collect whatever additional information you’d like to retain on your patrons and export the lists for use in any other platform, including additional email platforms and social media outlets. With these new audience segmentation capabilities, you can expand your marketing efforts and be more targeted so that you’re able to reach the right people at the right time with the right message.

Post-Purchase and Post-Show Surveys

Gain invaluable insights into audience preferences and feedback with post-purchase and post-show surveys. Armed with this data, organizations can craft tailored experiences that resonate with their audience, fostering repeat attendance and long-term patronage. This comes in handy when you’re thinking about how to more strategically target your audience, what offers they would like to see, and how to customize their experiences using filtered booking flows to deliver messages and offers that resonate with each unique segment of your audience.

With post-purchase surveys, you can understand what motivated your patrons to purchase tickets, what they are looking forward to at the performance, any preferences or special accommodations they might need, and much more. In a post-show survey, you can gain valuable information for your season planning, understand what perks might entice a patron into becoming a donor, how you can make your venue easier to navigate – anything that might help you make the most of your patron experience. 

The more data you have about your patrons, the easier it will become to create compelling, targeted messaging and campaigns that will instill loyalty in your current audience and expand your reach to new patrons. 

Filtered Booking Flows

“The Whole is Greater Than the Sum of Its Parts”

All of the latest features in this release and the releases over the last year are designed intentionally to work in symphony to create automated workflows that tailor the purchase journey to your patrons while at the same time providing opportunities for your organization to maximize the value of each order, generate more repeat patrons, and thus increase the overall customer lifetime value.

By optimizing the purchase journey according to the unique characteristics of your organization and patron base, you can drive sales and revenue growth while catering to diverse audience interests and creating loyalty that keeps your audience coming back for more.

What is a Filtered Booking Flow? 

A filtered booking flow refers to a customized and optimized pathway that patrons follow when purchasing tickets or making bookings for specific events or offerings. Unlike a standard booking flow that presents the same options to all users regardless of their preferences or needs, a filtered booking flow tailors the user experience based on predetermined filters or criteria.

When a filtered flow is combined with a targeted customer segment and a compelling offer created and shown to this specific audience, you have a highly targeted workflow that optimizes both conversions, revenue, and patron experience!

You can set conditions that allow you to sell tickets based on: 

  • Event: You can create a different filtered booking flow that appeals to a targeted audience based on the event. Provide extra incentives to those potential ticket buyers with a special, limited path to do so.  
  • Ticket Categories: If an event offers multiple ticket categories (e.g., VIP, General Admission, Student), the booking flow may filter options based on the patron’s selection or eligibility, urging them to purchase an upgraded experience. 
  • Upgrades:  Some events may offer additional VIP experiences or upgraded ticket options. By only presenting the relevant upgrade options to your targeted ticket buyer with a filtered booking flow, you not only optimize the revenue for your production but also ensure unforgettable experiences are never overlooked. 
  • Times and Dates: Boost attendance at historically lower performing dates and times or make sure that opening night is a packed house by filtering based on specific show dates and performance times. 

Overall, a filtered booking flow enhances the user experience by presenting a targeted group of ticket buyers with a tailored and streamlined purchase journey that aligns with their preferences and needs. By presenting strategically targeted, relevant options within the flow of the purchase, you can increase conversion rates, improve patron satisfaction, and ultimately drive revenue growth.

In Perfect Harmony 

While each of these individual features, tools, and tactics serves a unique purpose, the magic happens when they work together in harmony. By taking a multi-channel, multi-tactic approach that uses multiple features, you’ll be able to achieve tangible results that will have a direct impact on your organization’s success for years to come.   

Key industry-wide shifts are challenging performing arts organizations to adjust their approach and acknowledge that what has worked in the past will not continue to be sustainable in the years to come. It’s more important than ever to find ways to turn your organization into a profitable business while not losing sight of the importance of providing quality experiences for your patrons and community… and that is possible when you have the right tools, strategy, and resources. 

Audience Engagement Plays to Ensure Success

So, what do these Filtered Booking Flows look like in action, and how do they help ensure the future of your organization? To demonstrate the incredible value these features offer and spark your imagination, we’ve put together a few audience engagement plays that outline some of the most effective ways to set up your productions and achieve tangible business outcomes utilizing multiple features in the OTS toolbox. And we won’t stop there. This is just the start of a larger OTS Audience Engagement Playbook that will provide a full library of plays, each with its own workflow built on proven industry best practices. New resources will be released on a regular basis to drive your strategy.  

Early Bird Offers

By running an early bird campaign, you will create a sense of urgency and exclusivity that will result in more tickets early on. This helps replace the advanced revenue and guaranteed attendees historically provided by subscription purchases. OTS makes running this campaign a breeze. Easily target your audience with custom fields, create your incentive via the OTS promo codes, set up your custom URL with filtered booking flows, and promote with our various marketing tools and integrations!. 

Repeat Patron Promotions

It is not sustainable to continually acquire new patrons for each production, so it’s important to encourage repeat patrons. A proven strategy to get one-time patrons to return time and time again is by adding targeted campaigns to your ongoing strategy that incentivize repeat visits and foster loyalty. Consider promotional discounts when first-time attendees buy tickets to the next show. Get creative with exclusive offerings that are only available to those who attend more than one show. You will create your targeted audience, identify a unique incentive for them to return, offer a frictionless experience for them to accept that offer, and track the success of your campaign. OTS makes all this not just possible but seamless with audience segmentation, promo codes, filtered booking flows, unique URLs, marketing, and reporting. 

Non-Ticket Add-ons & Upsells

Give your patrons the opportunity to purchase additional products, services, upgrades, and experiences while you already have their attention – when they are already buying tickets! These can be anything and everything you can think of, from parking and concessions to VIP experiences, merchandise, and everything in between! This approach empowers theatres to generate additional income beyond standard admission while, just as importantly, fostering a deeper connection with their audience.  

Consider targeting your most loyal patrons with an exclusive VIP ticket. Set up a unique promotion and market to your specific audience, sending them to a unique URL that has the experience pre-populated. And don’t stop there. Give them an opportunity to add additional perks to their order and see their engagement skyrocket, all while generating more funding for your organization. It’s as easy as that with OTS!

Download our Audience Engagement Playbook for more details on these three OTS Plays and access to additional Plays you can implement to take your audience engagement to the next level.

Let Our Expertise Work for You

We believe in the importance of the performing arts industry and have seen firsthand how life-changing the arts can be for your community. We have proven success at the highest levels of our industry on Broadway and beyond, and that connection allows us to see these trends and build our features based on proven tactics that have worked across the industry as a whole. Not only are we able to identify the Broadway-best tools you need, but more importantly, we’ve built them into the foundation of our platform so you can easily implement them to drive the same success.

We’re committed to evolving with the industry and continuously innovating to provide you with the tools and resources that are critical to your success and ensure your theatre thrives for years to come.

Accelerate Revenue and Provide Exceptional Patron Experiences with OTS

To learn more about OTS and see how our suite of tools seamlessly work together to maximize revenue and secure your organization’s future, schedule time to chat with a team member today.

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