Toronto-based AudienceView Ticketing is working with Mirvish Productions to sell tickets to The Wizard of Oz over Facebook and will be announcing a full self-serve ticket platform for reserve seating and general admission in January, it announced today.
AudienceView is claiming Mirvish is the first theatrical production company to offer ticket sales and reservations for friends within Facebook, which is available on the Mirvish Productions page. Using AudienceView’s AVTiki app, theatre goers can buy tickets for themselves and reserve the seats next to them for friends. A Facebook notification is then sent to that friend to complete the transaction by paying for the ticket.
Mirvish has been a customer of AudienceView’s customer relationship management (CRM) ticketing and e-commerce software since 2005. It powers TicketKing, the official ticket selling operation of Mirvish. Now they’ll be using AVTiki to tap into the social graph, says Kevin Kimsa, chair and CEO of AudienceView.
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AVTiki and AudienceView’s other sales channels will soon be offering both reserve seating and general seating ticket options on a self-serve platform, Kimsa says. So far it’s been focused on reserve seating tickets, but wants to tap the general admission market because of success by companies like EventBrite in being used for small “wine and cheese” style events. The worldwide market for ticket sales is about 10 billion transactions per year.
“We’re announcing a self-serve general seating and reserve seating ticket element,” he says. The announcement will come at the Intix conference hosted in Florida at the end of January, 2013.
“Ticketing has always been social, for about 1,000 years,” he says. “The online social graph puts that type of referral on steroids because you can do it instantaneously.”
Mirvish isn’t the first client to use AVTiki to sell tickets on Facebook. The product launched eight months ago and has been used by customers such as U.K.-based The Ticket Factory and the University of Minnesota. The latter client saw a better than 100 per cent improvement on selling tickets to football games with the platform.
The key for ticket sellers who want to do well with AVTiki is a willingness to experiment, Kimsa says. That’s easy to do considering tickets can be deployed to the system and retracted with the click of a mouse. Different sellers may find that their audience wants to buy premium tickets on Facebook, while others will see distressed inventory move at a discount on the social network. It all depends on what you’re selling.
“You need to figure out what the secret recipe is for this type of live performance,” he says.
The Wizard of Oz begins shows in December at the Ed Mirvish Theatre. Currently, a reality show on CBC Over the Rainbow is searching to find a new star to play Dorothy.