Promotion and ticket sales can be a tricky art for event organizers, especially in a tough economy where disposable income is sparse and the competitors are many. But Eventbrite hopes to take some of the guesswork out of promotion as it introduces its new analytics and reporting tools today, December 15.
Billed as a social commerce and event planning Web site, Eventbrite allows organizers to list, promote and sell tickets for upcoming events. During an interview with TicketNews, co-founder and president Julia Hartz explained that her company’s new intelligence reporting is just the latest step to revolutionize event promoting and ticketing.
“It can be hard to understand the event life cycle when you’re an event organizer,” Hartz said. But she believes Eventbrite’s new analytics will eliminate some of the confusion and boost overall event attendance by giving promoters a better idea of who their audience is.
Organizers of any size can use the site’s tracking alone or in combination with outside analytics to gain a clearer picture of how an event evolves over time. The reports generated by Eventbrite include information on page views, ticket sales, geographic location and attendance, tracking intelligence from the time an event is listed on the site to the point of entry.
“One of our major challenges and goals is how that ticket buyer came to the event,” Hartz explained. With many organizers promoting their events across a variety of media, it can be important to overall ticket sales to quickly establish which methods are converting.
The analytics introduction is just the latest development for Eventbrite, which was founded in 2006 by Hartz along with her husband and company CEO Kevin Hartz.
“We saw a stagnant industry run by an 8,000-pound gorilla, and we wanted to democratize the ticketing industry,” Hartz said of the company’s founding. “We spent about two years, heads down, building a platform that was easy to use.”
Once that platform was finalized in 2008, the company was able to secure its first external financing and has since expanded. Even in the face of the dire economic predictions that had many in the live entertainment sector worried at the end of last year, Eventbrite has continued to grow.
“What we saw this year was the complete opposite of what we thought we were going to see in terms of an economic downturn,” Hartz explained.
In the past two years, Eventbrite has sold a total of $175 million in tickets, and $100 million of that has been in 2009 alone, she noted. While listing an event on the site is free, Eventbrite charges 2.5 percent plus a flat 99 cents per ticket sold.
Ultimately, Hartz attributes the sustained demand for live events on the experience had by attendees. Even as social networking and media continue to boom, consumers are still looking for the personal touch provided by a live event.
“What we can’t discount here is the power of the offline experience,” Hartz continued. “We want to tap into that power of bringing people together offline.”