Theatregoers no longer have to compete with London weather and other punters thanks to the app TodayTix, which has just launched in the UK.
The last minute theatre ticket application for smartphone, which moves unsold ticket inventory and became a hit on Broadway, is now offering its service to the West End.
The founders, ex-producers Brian Fenty and Merritt Baer, found the industry lacking in innovation when it came to ticketing. “The industry generally made it harder to buy tickets. Our philosophy was the exact opposite: make it as easy as possible to get tickets into the hands of consumers, and in doing so, broaden the scope, availability, and access to theatre events."
Of course, ticket websites such as Ticketmaster and See Tickets. already have an online vendor presence, but offer a different service: “A high-touch end for a high-tech process,” that hasn’t been seen before, says Merritt.
Users simply need to download the app, browse through available shows, and purchase tickets instantaneously at the lowest cost in less than a minute. The firm also offers a courier service, which dispatches a runner to meet you at the theatre with tickets in hand.
In an industry that has typically had problems attracting a younger audience, TicketTix also fills this gap; the average user is 32 years old, more than a decade younger than the industry average of 44.
Yet, as a disruptive force within the industry, there has been opposition from some established producers. Certain producers were worried that TodayTix was conditioning audiences to buy only day-of discount tickets, rather than tickets at face value – the lifeblood of commercial shows.
We are re-engaging an audience that hasn't been to the theatre in a while
But in an industry with an average ticket price in excess of £60 and the vast majority of consumers ready to buy at full price, the owners are not worried about this critique. Instead, they argue that they are bringing new audiences to the theatre, and adding to a consistently busy industry.
"Hopefully, by making it easier to see theatre, and affordable, we are re-engaging an audience that hasn't been to the theatre in a while and also bringing new people to the theatre."
And with Mobile set to grow, Merrit says “UK mobile commerce revenue is expected to grow by over 70% in 2015 and it is thrilling to be a part of that. Mobile is no longer the future: it’s now.
“London’s West End is synonymous with theatre and we are ecstatic to be able to offer a service that makes theatre more accessible than ever.”