In our second series edition on crafting a winning theatre strategy for 2024, we’re exploring the world of premium. At Ticketmaster, we aim to assist you in optimising your yield from each ticket sale and boosting your Average Ticket Prices (ATP).  

Our research suggests an increasing desire among fans to enhance their theatre experience. As trends evolve and audience expectations shift, understanding the nuances of premium offerings becomes crucial. Our focus is on providing insights to empower the theatre industry in creating a compelling premium experience that not only drives higher average ticket prices (ATP) but also resonates with the wants of today’s theatregoers. 

Understanding the motivation behind attendance 

When queried about their motivation for attendance in 2023, 56% of fans cited it as a ‘treat,’ securing the highest response rate. Following closely were ‘fun’ (53%), ‘interest in theatre’ (36%), and ‘birthday’ (21%), emerging as the next prominent drivers (multi-select question). 

Furthermore, 65% of fans are attending with their partner, suggesting ‘date night’ is a common reason to attend the theatre, implying a desire for a special experience. 

Fan spending 

Fans shared that their average expenditure on a ticket in 2023 is £60.50, with a willingness to consider spending up to £95.70 on average. The challenge lies in enticing these theatregoers to elevate their experience and choose the more premium seating options. To tackle this, considering premium options with Ticketmaster could play a pivotal role in the success of an onsale. Crafting compelling incentives and emphasising the added value of premium seats can motivate fans to trade up for a more enriching and premium theatre experience. 

Ticketmaster excel at optimising every ticket sale and understanding the VIP customer base. For instance, our VIP audience consists of 3.1 million opted-in and engaged customers, allowing for refined targeting and highly effective VIP marketing strategies. As customers are spending more on tickets, food, drinks, and merchandise in 2023 compared to 2013, it’s evident that exploring and investing in premium experiences is a worthwhile opportunity. With average spend rising across the board: an increase of 13.2% on tickets, 29.41% on food, 19.05% on drinks, 86.67% on merchandise and a whopping 173.81% on accommodation. 

The strategic significance of VIP campaigns 

Hamilton, photgraphed by Danny Kaan 

This year, Ticketmaster has run VIP campaigns for West End shows, presenting exclusive access, special pricing, and premium add-ons for select partners. Our aim with these campaigns is to shift consumer perspectives, moving away from reliance on heavy discounts and low-priced seats. Instead, we aim to highlight the luxurious experiences that West End theatre offers, especially with the best seats in mind. 

In our current campaign (running from December 1st to 15th), we’re supporting Hamilton, MAMMA MIA!, MJ The Musical and more, drive Premium sales during the crucial gifting season. 

Discover more about our recent findings by checking out the other articles in the Behind the Scenes series here.

Ready to enhance your premium offerings? Reach out to the Ticketmaster team at [email protected]

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