Ticketmaster, SeatGeek, True Tickets Expand Services
Multiple ticketing providers are diversifying their services to meet the needs of venues preparing to reopen their doors with limited capacity while finding additional ways to protect customers during the pandemic.
In some cases, they’re exploring new technology to identify potential health risks to ticket buyers and determine whether patrons are free of COVID-19, given the restrictions in place through privacy laws.
Ticketmaster and True Tickets are both in the early stages of testing those digital layers of security through blockchain technology and third-party health information supplied through Clear and IBM.
Initially, Ticketmaster and SeatGeek, among other primary ticketing vendors, have developed social distance tools to remap seating bowls into smaller groups to help arenas and stadiums ramp back up at a fraction of total capacity.
Ticketmaster’s tools are part of a bigger platform called SmartEvent, which extends from regulating traffic flow at point of entry to contactless concessions, ticket transfers and contact tracing in the event of infection.
On its own, the social distance mechanism essentially uses customized algorithms tied to variables such as the number of seats and distance between seats, plus the percentage of capacity that venues are allowed to hold under local government restrictions.
The technology takes into account the pitch of each seating level, seat width and other physical dimensions.
Ultimately, the tool can remap a seating bowl within two minutes, Ticketmaster officials said, saving ticket managers several hours they would otherwise have to spend to manually complete the task.
SeatGeek’s new system called Adapt has similar capabilities for its clients.
Its game day feed with updated weather, parking, rideshare locations and other information folded into the ticket buyer’s mobile application now covers COVID-19 event policies to guide customers through the event.
“We’re focused on helping venues get fans back in buildings in a safe way without diminishing the magic of going to a live event,” said Jack Groetzinger, SeatGeek’s co-founder and CEO.
“Kudos to the ticketing industry in general,” said Nic Barlage, president of business operations for the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers, which recently signed SeatGeek as its primary and secondary ticketing provider. “Between what the providers have done to evolve in this COVID environment, they all have great options. We’re excited to get back moving again.”