Tixel, Bolster Group report details ticket-buying habits in Australia

Featured image credit: Edward Cisneros on Unsplash

Ticket marketplace Tixel and culture marketing agency Bolster Group have released a report detailing the preferences and behaviours of ticket buyers, as well as a look into the state of the music and events market in Australia. 

The report, called All Options Open – Ticketing State of Play 2022, details responses from more than 1,200 ticket buyers and music and events industry experts.

According to a report from Ernst and Young, Australia’s contemporary music sector drove A$835m (£474m/€540m/$525m) worth of ticket sales in 2019, with 8.3 million attending events.

However, with the beginning of the Australian summer looming, changing behaviours are evident in what should be the country’s peak ticket-selling period. According to the research in the report, 71% of event-goers reported having changed their ticket purchase behaviour following the COVID-19 pandemic.

Some said they were purchasing more tickets, some said less and some replied they were just buying tickets differently to how they used to. Pandemic-related cancellations and postponements have also made music fans think twice about purchasing tickets, while the report says this is roughly 70% the case for Gen Z buyers.

A shift to a flexi economy has also seen consumer expectations change, influencing a switch in policies for airlines, accommodation providers and gyms. Some 84% of event-goers said that they were more likely to purchase tickets if they knew they could resell them easily if they were no longer able to attend.

Some 41% of event-goers said that they think twice about purchasing a ticket to an event that doesn’t allow easy resale.

Jason Webb, co-founder Tixel, said: “Today’s ticket is considered by many as an option, not a commitment. Especially with 18-25 year olds. Their mindset isn’t BNPL (Buy Now, Pay Later), it’s BNDL (Buy Now, Decide Later) and they feel secure in the knowledge that if they change their mind or plans change, they can sell the ticket and move on. There’s a level of fluidity in tickets today that we’ve not seen before, driven primarily by consumer desire for flexibility.”

The most common buyer type that emerged during the research process were the Early Bird fans (42%) who purchased tickets during pre-sales, followed by those buying tickets for a group (22%). Other types included those taking a risk, procrastinating about a purchase or keeping an eye on sales.

Ticket buyers not only have a fear of missing out on the event, but also a fear of the event selling out, which is driving fans to purchase tickets as quickly as possible. This helps to offset the effects of the delayed purchase cycle from the remainder of the buyers.

Some 91% of event-goers said that they needed to really love the artist or band performing to purchase a ticket, while 62% said they bought tickets to go with friends. A further 65% said that a line-up video was enough to sway a decision to purchase a ticket.

Darren Levin, head of strategy and solutions, Bolster Group, said: “We know audiences are typically buying later, much later, but this report takes a deeper look at why. As we head into a turbulent summer period, we hope this report arms you with all the info you need to get a handle on an ever-evolving audience. We could think of no better partner than Tixel, who have witnessed similar market shifts first hand, and we hope to build on this research year on year.”