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The Shuberts reveal some stats on social media and selling tickets.

Every so often, Shubert Ticketing slips an email into my inbox called “Market Notes”, which is their every-so-often insider bulletin about ticketing trends that often comes with some terrific insight on how to sell more tickets to your show.

I have to be honest – when I get one of these emails, I feel all James Bondy . . . like I’m being passed a classified government document that reveals what really happened at . . .

I know, I know, I’m certainly not the only one that gets this email, but allow me a little bit of a spy fantasy, will ya?  Thank you.

Ok, and now on to what the Shubeys revealed in this special edition . . .  it’s all about social media and its ability to sell a ticket.  Here’s what the Shubert Swami had to say:

We love social media. It’s inexpensive, and every show is looking to build the next great viral marketing campaign. With the popularity of Facebook, we must be reaching lots of ticket buyers, right?

As has been our custom for the last few years, we did a survey of the 2011 Telecharge phone and web ticket buyers. There were a few questions on the impact of social media on ticket buyers for Broadway shows.

Here’s the good news: 75% of customers who have visited a show’s Facebook page have “liked” a show, and two thirds of them have written on their own Facebook page about a show, their experience at a show, or their plans to see a show.

That level of engagement sounds fabulous; however, only 16% of all respondents had ever visited a show’s Facebook page. A lot of the heavy lifting that drives awareness and establishes a show’s broad brand presence remains the work of traditional media: print, TV, radio, outdoor, direct mail, and more recently, online banner advertising.

Social media is obviously a major force, but we need to find ways to even better engage Facebook fans and find out more about them. Are they potential ticket buyers at all? Will they purchase top-price seats, or are they more likely to buy at TKTS or the rush price?

Amidst the excitement we all are aware there are limitations to social media. And campaigns aimed at Facebook fans are important, but the data remind us that traditional media still delivers the high volume of impressions to potential ticket buyers that get the Facebook conversation started.

So what did I takeaway from the above?

The folks that engage with your social media presence are your more passionate fans.  And it’s important to keep them engaged and active, so that they’ll encourage the growth of more fans like themselves.

But, the social media user is still not the Traditional Theatergoer . . . or that’s not where the Traditionals choose to interact with our brands (or with any brands, most likely).  While the average age of a Facebook user is getting closer to the average age of a Traditional Theatergoer, we’ve still got some years to go before we catch up with interaction levels.  And don’t even get me started about Twitter.

Don’t get me wrong.  I love social media more than James Bond loves Octopussy.

But we have to remember . . . Social Media is not a secret weapon.  It’s just one more tool that has to be used in the right combination with your entire media mix.

Thanks again, Shuberts, for sharing this valuable info.  To read my other entries about “Market Notes”, click here.

(Got a comment? I love ‘em, so comment below!  Email subscribers, click here then scroll down, to say what’s on your mind!)

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Can’t get enough of the Shubert’s statistics? Listen in on my one on one podcast with Brian Mahoney the Shubert’s “Swami” of statistics for a full inside rundown on Broadway tickets and media.

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