Pro Tip: Season Ticket Price Communication

It’s that time of the year again. The season is almost over, and most sports teams focus their efforts on marketing their season ticket products for the next season, aligning the process with player transfers or trying to get as many renewals as possible before the team goes silent for the summer.

Price communication may seem a bit trivial, but it can actually make an important impact in the future, which makes it much more important than most believe it to be.

In most cases, at least outside of the US, the discount on single-game tickets is a key incentive used to push the season ticket product.

Let’s go through a numeric example that will help get our message across:

Consider a club that sells a €475 season ticket in a season that has 19 home games. Often, this €475 product will be sold without communicating the breakdown of the cost.

This means, that fans will apply a very simple calculation: €475 ÷ 19 games = €25 per game. This is not only the mindset of the average fan, but many clubs actually stress this very same math in their marketing efforts.

On the one hand, all makes perfect sense. It’s a simple message, which focuses on the main benefit of the season ticket product, however, there is also a downside to it.

Fast forward 5 months into next season. The team isn’t playing too well, your next game is against a less attractive rival, the weather is pretty lousy, and it’s on a weeknight. Everything screams that single-game ticket prices should be lower than originally planned.

That’s ok. You’re a month before the game, and haven’t published ticket prices yet, so you go ahead and publish a €15 single-game ticket product at the same location where season ticket holders paid €475.

Soon you might find that your inbox is quickly filled with angry emails from fans who are not planning to renew their season ticket next year, because you’ve basically eliminated their key benefit – the discount. Had they known, they would have never committed upfront, and would have waited to get the same ticket for a cheaper price.

One concept all single-game ticket buyers are used to, is game categorization. It is clear that not all games are similar – some are more attractive than others for various reasons – and therefore, they don’t cost the same. Most clubs usually have 3 basic categories, linked to ticket price ranges.

What if you introduce this very same concept at the season ticket level too?

Let’s go back to our €475 ticket, but this time, communicating the concept that not all games are equal within their package:

  • 4 Category A games @ €55 each.
  • 10 Category B games @ €20 each.
  • 5 Category C games @ €11 each.

Total: 19 games @ €475

You’ve now created the flexibility to touch single-game prices along the season, and have 15 opportunities in which you can go below the original €25 price point should circumstances require.

And all that, without annoying any of your season ticket holders.

It’s just a matter of framing and communicating pricing properly, to be as flexible as possible with your other products.

Want to make sure you nail your pricing from the get go? Give us a shout.