Over a year after acquiring middle market competitor Ticketfly for $200 million from Pandora, Eventbrite has announced a new ticketing solution specifically designed for independent music venues, promoters and festivals. Dubbed Eventbrite Music, the new solution is built on top of Eventbrite’s existing platform and promises to deliver the best aspects of Eventbrite and Ticketfly into one app for independent organizers, as they move towards sunsetting the latter brand in 2019.
Eventbrite Music is “a very progressive next generation solution,” Eventbrite music division president, Andrew Dreskin tells Billboard of the mobile-focused new solution. “Ticketfly was a platform that was built for enterprise level independent music venues, promoters, and festivals. We took the learnings there and we built a bunch of technology into the Eventbrite platform to form Eventbrite Music.”
The new solution enhances marketing and distribution capabilities with more than 50 distribution partner sites, including YouTube, Spotify, Pandora and Songkick. Eventbrite simplifies the checkout experience for customers and organizers by allowing venues to embed checkouts into their website or two-step purchase flow placed within discovery partners such as Instagram and Bandsintown. Fans can discover artists, purchase tickets and scan their way into a venue all without leaving the Facebook app on their mobile devices thanks to a deep partnership with Eventbrite.
“I have been excited over the past few months to switch over from Ticketfly because of the Facebook integration,” says Jordan Olels, marketing and ticketing manager for independent Seattle venue, Neumos. “Before we'd have to manually go in and fill out each little detail on the Facebook event. Now we create the title, hit publish and all the details are there.”
Eventbrite Music’s focus on streamlining marketing tasks is an essential component for the independent music community, according to Olels.
“Obviously time is money for everybody, but for us there is limited time with the amount of employees that we have,” says Olels. “Little things like that save us literally hours every week.”
“Over the years we've built a really special community of venues and promoters,” adds Dreskin. “They're our friends and our clients and we build technologies specifically to make them successful and that will continue on.”
Neumos has piloted Eventbrite Music including the Eventbrite Organizer app and has seen improvements to the small business through the data and analytics tracking on the platform. The Eventbrite Organizer app is available to all Eventbrite clients today. Eventbrite will continue to migrate Ticketfly clients over to the Eventbrite Music platform in a very orderly and thoughtful fashion, according to Dreskin.
“I've seen an increase of ticket sales and there's obviously multiple factors, but a big increase has been linked to Spotify and definitely Songkick,” says Olels.
Eventbrite Music’s mobile-first technology turns every smart phone into a mobile box office, offering data and analytics, customizable permissions and reporting, guest list editing and more at organizer’s fingertips, eliminating the need for desktop computers or separate scanners.
“It can be really difficult to produce shows remotely without an app like Organizer,” says Ric Leichtung, Events Director for AdHoc Presents.
New York-based AdHoc Presents produces over 600 events a year ranging from 100-capacity shows to concerts in 3,500 space venues.
“As we're expanding into other markets and producing shows in places where I am not physically, I'm able to keep track of walk ups in real time, I can see exactly when people get there, get notifications when certain agents arrive. The Organizer app keeps things, for lack of a better word, organized,” adds Leichtung.
As AdHoc grows its presence in the music community, Leichtung wants to keep its focus on getting more money into the hands of emerging artists and doesn’t see a partnership with a larger ticketer as a means to that end.
“My faith is really in Andrew Dreskin. He has pioneered all the greatest ticketing technology in the past decade or more,” says Leichtung. “As an independent promoter I don’t identify with Ticketmaster or AXS. I think it would be a clash with our brand and our values. We like partnering up with a ticketing platform that doesn’t have outrageous fees.”
Even though Eventbrite listed Live Nation as a main competitor when it went public in September, Dreskin continues to put a strong emphasis on the middle market where both Eventbrite and Ticketlfy have dominated in the past with venues like the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C. and The Troubadour in Los Angeles.
“We love the middle market. We think that frankly it's the place to be,” says Dreskin, who sees growth within the middle market due to social media and streaming giving independent artists more exposure than ever and creating demand for live experiences.
“Ticketfly took advantage of the social revolution. It was the first fully integrated platform to power all the technology for a venue or event promoter: website, email, social marketing, ticketing, analytics,” says Dreskin. “Now when I think about Eventbrite Music, I think of this as ticketing 3.0.”
According to Dreskin, Eventbrite have been working on this new solution for more than a year. Plans for Eventbrite Music were already in motion when Ticketfly suffered a hack in May that the company described as a "cyber incident." Many clients were temporarily moved to the Eventbrite platform with some choosing to remain after the incident.
A one platform strategy “was our plan all along,” says Dreskin. “Where companies fall down is when they have a hodgepodge of 12 platforms and when they build an interesting feature on one of them, but the other 11 don’t get it. That’s not in our DNA. We always knew that we would take the finer points of Ticketfly and build them into Eventbrite.”
Eventbrite Music’s Organizer app is available for all operating systems and more information on the new solution can be found here.