Ticketfly Donates to Support Voter Turnout with Wilco and the Capitol Theatre

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We are stoked that Chicago rock band, Wilco, will make its Capitol Theatre debut this October for two of only a few stops on their U.S. fall tour. Billed as “An evening with Wilco,” the no-opener shows will feature songs from every part of the band’s incredible career.

As if you needed another reason to go, your ticket will also help support a great cause – driving voter turnout for the mid-term elections this November. In an awesome collaboration between Wilco, the Capitol Theatre, and Ticketfly, we’ll be donating a portion of each ticket sale to HeadCount’s #GoVote campaign.

HeadCount is a non-partisan non-profit that stages voter registration at concerts and festivals around the country. Its impact is huge: in 2012, it registered more than 100,000 voters before the Obama-Romney election. Participating in democracy through voting is critical to building the society we want to live in. HeadCount wants to make sure you’re signed up to make your voice heard!

We are running a big “get-out-the-vote” initiative in the next two months, and every dollar translates into more people at the polls. These donations will make a huge difference as we gear up for the November elections.
- Andy Bernstein, HeadCount Executive Director

These events also have some extra special meaning to the band. Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy’s son, Spencer (with whom he’s been touring all summer), will be eligible to vote for the first time this year.

Tickets go on sale on Friday, September 5 at 12:00pm EDT. Grab your tickets to the show on Tuesday, October 28 or Wednesday, October 29 and support a good cause.

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Vote for Ticketfly’s SXSW 2015 Panels, Presentations, & Meetups

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South by Southwest 2015 may be eight months away, but the time to vote on content has arrived! This year, we’re going BIG for both the Music and Interactive conferences. Our submissions range from music event discovery and paid advertising to choosing a technology stack, scala best practices, and building concurrent systems. Whether you’re a venue owner, talent buyer, marketer, engineer or technology enthusiast, we’ve got something for you!

VOTE for our Music panel:  How Tech Companies Are Reimagining Event Discovery

Last year we moderated a panel on analyzing and acting on fan data to know and grow fan communities. This year’s panel will focus on how technology companies are using data to drive powerful recommendations and search algorithms, enabling the best live event discovery experiences for fans. Hear from Facebook, Google, DoStuff Media, and Ticketfly about the changing world of event marketing, what’s coming, and what it means for you.

VOTE for our Music presentation:  How Much Should You Spend on Event Marketing?

Are you looking to build awareness? Attract new customers? Sell more tickets to a show? No matter what your goals are or how big or small your event marketing budget may be, learn how to optimize your spend to achieve the results you desire.

VOTE for our Interactive presentation:  How to NOT Build a Highly Concurrent System

Building off of our 2013 interactive workshop on how to build scalable software, our 2015 presentation will outline pitfalls to avoid in building a highly concurrent system. Leverage our best practices to learn how to build your system for scale.

VOTE for our Interactive Scala & Reactive Design Meetup

After our 2013 interactive workshop, an enthusiastic group of engineers in attendance took us out for beers to geek-out on scala. We had so much fun, we thought we’d host a formal gathering this year for scala enthusiasts (with beers, of course). If you want network and share knowledge about functional programming and reactive design, this meetup is for you!

VOTE for our Interactive presentation: How to Choose a Tech Stack

New tech stacks are appearing and disappearing, faster than ever. How do you know you’re making the right long-term choice? Hear from Ticketfly’s VP of Technology on past technology decisions throughout his career, a review of what’s out there, and Ticketfly’s approach to technology decisions to scale for the long-term.

Magic is Coming to Ticketfly….

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It’s not all work and no play around these parts. We’ve mentioned before how we’re a competitive group and when our employees need a chance to rewind there are a variety of options to choose from: ping pong, musical instruments, video games, and other fun activities can be found throughout the office. However, our inter-office competitions have been taken to a new level recently by an entirely employee led enterprise: Magic the Gathering.

The popularity of Magic is on the rise across our Engineering team. Several times a week hopeful competitors gather in conference rooms to test their skills in a battle of cards hoping to be named the winner. And we’re not going to lie: they’ve gotten pretty good. So good in fact that we’re putting out a challenge to our fellow Magic loving engineers in the Bay Area: Come join us in the office for a Magic the Gathering Tournament and test your skills against ours.

We’ll provide the decks, scoreboards, snacks, you name it. The only thing you’ll have to bring is yourself, and a resume. If our current Magic playing engineer population is any indication of fit and success within our company- then we want to meet you! One sheet of paper is all that stands in your way between awesome prizes and potential gainful employment.

Tournament Details:

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Ticketfly Acquires WillCall to Reimagine Live Events

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This is an exciting day for Ticketfly. I am very happy to announce that we have acquired WillCall, an amazing concert discovery, ticketing, and in-venue commerce app for iOS and Android.

We’ve been friends and business partners with the WillCall folks for some time now, and are big fans of what they do. The WillCall app offers one of the best event discovery and commerce experiences we’ve come across, allowing fans to purchase and share tickets with just a few taps on a mobile phone. WillCall is best known for its curated list of concerts in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York. Their latest innovation leverages beacon technology to let fans open bar tabs on their phones with a single swipe as they enter the venue, and close out at the end of the night by simply walking out the door. Think Uber for drink ordering.

Ticketfly and WillCall have a shared passion for improving the event-going experience for fans. But fans won’t be the only ones to benefit from Ticketfly and WillCall joining forces. WillCall has some great tools for venues and event promoters as well, including a simple and intuitive iPad-based point of sale system, which integrates seamlessly with its bar tab functionality. Over time the WillCall POS will integrate tightly with the Ticketfly platform. We believe that the melding of concessions and ticketing data is crucial to helping promoters better understand their customers and reward loyalty.

The way people experience live events in the future will be very different than in the past. The phone will play a big part in that. Ticketfly has been a leader in mobile event discovery and ticketing for years. Nearly half of the traffic to Ticketfly.com and the 500 mobile-optimized websites we power on behalf of our partners originates from mobile devices. WillCall will be yet another tool in our mobile arsenal.

The combination of WillCall’s innovative mobile technology and Ticketfly’s broad network of leading independent venues, promoters and festivals will be powerful, and one that will accelerate innovation for fans and promoters alike. This partnership will lay the foundation for a frictionless show-going experience, and help us to continue to transform the way people experience live events.

Andrew Dreskin Co-founder and CEO, Ticketfly

Read more in Fast CompanyTechCrunch, The Next WebHypebot, and Pollstar.

Burning Man & Ticketfly: A Long History

After months of planning and anticipation, Burning Man is almost here! Our excitement reached a new high this week as members of our team left to help set up ticketing operations at Black Rock City.

There is a long history between the Ticketfly and Burning Man communities, with roots that were planted way before we announced our ticketing and technology partnership earlier this year. Many members of the Ticketfly team have attended the gathering on the playa for years, and as an organization we share Burning Man’s ethos.

Ticketfly team members have collectively been to Burning Man over 30 times since 1998.

For some employees, the Burning Man experience has been truly transformational. For Valerie, our VP of Operations, Burning Man helped put her life into perspective and had a profound impact on her personal and professional journey:

My last year at Burning Man was 2001. When I came back to San Francisco, September 11th happened right afterward… between the inspiration one finds at Burning Man and the sadness of 9/11, it hit me pretty hard that life is way too short for regrets. I decided then to go back to school and get a degree, which was something that had nagged me for a long time. I often wonder where I would be if one of those two things never happened.

When I applied for a job at TicketWeb in 2002, I included Burning Man Cafe volunteering as a note on my resume. I’m convinced that it helped me get the job, because we talked about Burning Man a lot during my interview!

Ellis, a Director on our Sales team, was similarly moved by his travels to the Black Rock Desert:

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Summer Spotlight: ‘Express Yourself’ at the Mad Decent Block Party

Nothing says summer like a Mad Decent Block Party. These outrageous shindigs have been popping up across the US & Canada every summer since 2008, and every year they just get bigger and bigger with new cities on the roster and tickets selling like hot cakes.

Finish your summer off right at a #MDBP with Mad Decent affiliated artists like Diplo (the ringleader), Dillon Francis, Flossatradamus, Action Bronson, Baauer, RiFF RAFF, Liz, Zeds Dead, RL Grime, Jack U, and MANY more. Get your tickets while you can:

8.1:  Merriweather Post Pavilion ⋆ Columbia, MD

8.8:  Festival Pier at Penn’s Landing ⋆ Philadelphia, PA  SOLD OUT! 

8.30: Whitewater Amphitheater ⋆ New Braunfels, TX

9.5: Shaw Millennium Park ⋆ Calgary, AB

9.13: LA Center Studios ⋆ Los Angeles, CA 

9.14: LED ⋆ San Diego, CA  

For updates, follow Mad Decent on Twitter and Instagram

Happy 25th Anniversary, Merge Records!

Merge Records has been churning out amazing music for 25 years, and what better way to celebrate their silver anniversary than throwing a 4-day festival? Head out to Cat’s Cradle in Carrboro, North Carolina July 23rd-26th to celebrate Merge 25 with a large part of the indie music community, from fans to artists. 

The lineup includes top-notch talent including Wye Oak, The Clientele, Destroyer, Caribou, Lambchop (performing Nixon), Neutral Milk Hotel, The Rock*A*Teens, Ex Hex, Bob Mould, The Mountain Goats, Superchunk, and The Love Language. 

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Ticketfly Tours: MØ, Real Estate, Bear in Heaven, and Soulja Boy

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Coming soon to a Ticketfly venue near you… , Real EstateBear in Heaven, and Soulja Boy!

Karen Marie Ørsted (born ’88 in Odense, Denmark), better known by her moniker MØ, is a singer-songwriter with an electropop sound and vibe similar to Grimes, Twin Shadows, or AlunaGeorge. MØ first made an impact on the music scene when she lent her vocals to Swedish producer Avicii’s “Dear Boy” in 2013. Her debut album, No Mythologies to Follow, was released in February 2014.

MØ – XXX 88 | Listen for free at bop.fm

9.22: 9:30 Club ▴ Washington, DC
9.26: Union Transfer ▴ Philadelphia, PA
10. 1: Varsity Theater ▴ Minneapolis, MN
10.16: The Regent ▴ Los Angeles, CA
10.21: Wonder Ballroom ▴ Portland, OR

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REAL ESTATE

This Jersey-bred indie rock group is made up of Titus Andronicus‘ Martin Courtney, Etienne Duguay (who also records as Predator Vision), Alex Bleeker, and Matthew Mondanile, also of Ducktails. The foursome played together in bands — including a Weezer cover band — during high school, but didn’t become Real Estate until 2008. Check out their latest album, Altas, with hit-single, “Talking Backwards.”

Real Estate – Talking Backwards | Listen for free at bop.fm

7.20: Pitchfork Music Festival ▴ Chicago, IL
7.26: Main Stage at SSFCU ▴ Denver, CO
8.2: Gundlach Bundschu Winery ▴ Sonoma, CA
8.3: The Catalyst ▴ Santa Cruz, CA
8.4: Harlow’s Restaurant and Nightclub ▴ Sacramento, CA
9.19: Cat’s Cradle ▴ Carrboro, NC
9.20: 40 Watt Club ▴ Athens, GA
9.24: Zanzabar ▴ Louisville, KY
10.1: The Altar Bar ▴ Pittsburgh, PA

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Coming Soon! The Regent Reopens in Downtown Los Angeles

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The Regent Theater has been a focal point on Main Street in downtown Los Angeles for over 100 years, and the newly refurbished venue is about to make a comeback into LA’s indie music scene. Our partner, Mitchell Frank (the man behind Spaceland Presents, The Echo, and The Echoplex), bought the place in early 2012 and has been overseeing major renovations since. The Regent will reopen in August 2014 as a 1,100 capacity venue/bar/restaurant, and we can’t wait to check it out.

Help christen Spaceland’s new digs! Get your tickets to the first announced shows on the Regent’s calendar:

October 7th  ▴  Angus & Julia Stone

October 16th  ▴   

October 21st  ▴  Metronomy

For live updates and concert announcements, like The Regent on Facebook and follow them on Twitter and Instagram.

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Email Marketing FlyTip: Design for Mobile

Do you read your email on your phone or tablet? Yeah, we do too.

Today, almost half of event-related emails are opened on mobile devices.*

And this number isn’t going down anytime soon. Here are four ways to make your email marketing campaigns more mobile-friendly.

1. Write for mobile! 

You know how it feels to scroll through a sea of unread emails. Don’t you usually delete a bunch of unopened (likely promotional) emails to clean things up before getting to the real meat? First impressions are key on mobile, so pay particular attention to your sender alias, subject, and preview. These drive the decision to open…or not to open.

44% of ticket buyers open event-related emails on their phone, and 94% of those people are using iPhones.*

Here is what’s visible on an iPhone:

iPhone Email Preview

  • The first 20 characters of your sender alias – in this case, our friends at “The Capitol Theatre”
  • The first 35 characters of your subject line, the line below the sender alias
  • The first 75 characters of your body or customized preview, the two lines below the subject line

Here is what’s happening on an Android device:

Android Email Preview

  • The first 20 characters of your sender alias – hello again to our friends at “The Capitol Theatre”
  • The first 75 or so characters of your subject line. Note that Android will wrap the subject line onto the next line if it can’t be contained on the first. If this happens, there’s no preview text.
2. Subject: Keep it short and sweet

It’s probably safe to assume that your email subject line will be viewed on a mobile device. To be sure it’s seen, include the most crucial information in the beginning, such as:

  • Discounts or special offers, e.g., “Presale today”
  • Popular artists
  • Recency messaging, e.g., “Just announced”
  • Urgency messaging, e.g., “Last chance!”
3. Mix it up

Ever get bored of seeing the same subject lines over and over? We thought so. Don’t let things get stale; keep it fresh.

Also, remember that there’s no such thing as a perfect, evergreen subject line. What works for the Drake vs. Lil’ Wayne presale may not work when announcing Weezer is coming to town. Your fans will appreciate you shaking up subjects from time to time, and you’ll learn what works best.

4. Preview it yourself

Send yourself test emails to check how they’ll appear on mobile. Is the most important information clear and defined from the inbox? How does your mobile preview look? Note that emails may render differently by device depending on which email server your customer is using.

Would you want to open the email to learn more? What you see is what your customers and future customers will see. It never hurts to double check.

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