Though theoretically a part of the brand new SXSports conference at South By Southwest, the “Stop Pricing Tickets Like It’s 1999 Panel” on Saturday at the Driskell Hotel in Austin was full of takeaways for the concert industry as well. That’s thanks to the experience of the two panelists, QCue CEO Barry Kahn and StubHub Director of Business Development Greg Ivry, who conducted an open, back-and-forth discussion mostly related to the two companies tactics in approaching ticket sales, and how they see ticket-buying trends for both sports and entertainment events changing in the future.
Kahn’s company’s focus is on dynamic pricing, and he reiterated multiple times a new hope that ticket prices aren’t looked at as having a set “face” price, but rather a change based on demand. “There is no such thing as an optimal, magical price,” he said, pointing out that when he meets with clients to discuss pricing options and asks if they want to make more money or fill the room, they often say “both.” That’s not really possible. “The best practices or solutions are the ones where they’re trying to do [one thing], and you can use prices to do that.”