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Email remains theatre’s biggest discovery channel

Email and word-of-mouth remain the biggest discovery channels for theatre-goers, with around a half of patrons selecting them as their primary source of information.

A new report from AudienceView, which surveyed more than 5,000 members of TheaterMania and WhatsOnStage’s online communities, found that 31% of respondents chose email as their No.1 discovery channel despite the growth of areas such as social media over the last decade.

Word of mouth accounted for 21% of US consumers through TheaterMania, and 14% of UK consumers through WhatsOnStage. The third biggest segment in both markets was online advertising, according to the An Overview of Buying Behavior & Consumer Preferences in Live Entertainment report.

Facebook was the biggest social media channel for discovery, making up 10% in the UK and 6% in the US. TV ads scored 8% in the US but just 2% in the UK, while radio ads scored higher than social media platform TikTok.

Some 87% of ticket purchases are made online, with 8% in-person and 5% via telephone. AudienceView’s data found that 93% of respondents under the age of 60 typically buy online, compared to 84% of those aged 60+.

The survey charts audience demographics such as age and household income, as well as detailing how far ahead of events patrons tend to buy tickets, the devices they use, and how much they are willing to pay in fees. Forward-looking data relates to when consumers will buy tickets using virtual assistants and with cryptocurrencies.

AudienceView said: “Generated from the survey results, this forward-looking report will assist live events organisations of all sizes with delivering a worldclass customer experience.

“The report aims to uncover the changing behaviours of eventgoers, including their opinions on factors they consider when buying tickets to an event, how far in advance they make a purchase, event discovery channels, preferences related to ticket delivery and payment methods and much more.”

Image: Denise Jans on Unsplash