exclusive Features May 17, 2019

Eventbrite’s Asia Pacific GM Phil Silverstone on what’s driving growth and its new partnership with promoter Andrew McManus

Eventbrite’s Asia Pacific GM Phil Silverstone on what’s driving growth and its new partnership with promoter Andrew McManus

Eventbrite’s Asia Pacific this morning announced an exclusive, multi-year ticketing deal with music promoter Andrew McManus’ One World Entertainment.

Eventbrite will be ticketing partner for One World Entertainment’s tours in Australia and New Zealand, as well as its national festival brand, Under The Southern Stars.

McManus said: “In our search for a ticketing partner that would help us re-evolve whilst remaining independent, Eventbrite quickly emerged as the obvious choice.

“We are confident that this partnership will expand the One World Entertainment live event footprint throughout Australia and New Zealand, and we feel honoured to be a part of the Eventbrite family.”

The deal is the latest example of growth for the Melbourne-based Asia-Pacific operations in the past five years.

It’s been picking up music clients in Australia and New Zealand as well as in Singapore and Hong Kong, where Eventbrite launched a localised platform earlier this year.

Here Asia Pacific GM Phil Silverstone looks at the future of the company and the overall live music experience.

Your latest client is Andrew McManus’ One World Entertainment. What services will Eventbrite offer which will help One World customers with their concert experience?

Our partnership with Andrew and One World Entertainment is an exciting next step for Eventbrite in Australia.

In the months ahead, Eventbrite will ticket tours for artists such as Kris Kristofferson, and festivals like Under The Southern Stars.

What this means for music fans is that they’ll enjoy the streamlined purchase process and seamless customer experience they’ve come to expect from Eventbrite; while One World Entertainment will benefit from Eventbrite’s industry-leading conversion rates, data-driven audience insights and our integrations with powerful partners like Facebook, Instagram and Spotify.

You recently also signed Origin Fields and renewed deals with Novel and 100% Entertainment. Do you offer them the same services as One World or are their requirements different?

There’s a large and growing number of venues, promoters and festivals using Eventbrite for their events.

While they might differ in terms of musical genre, location or venue capacity, there’s one thing they all have in common: they want to sell out their event, whilst providing the best possible experience for their customers.

Our role is to orient ourselves around those goals and help our music clients provide a flawless experience for their attendees from consideration to purchase, to the moment they scan their ticket at the gate.

For clients like Origin Fields, Novel and 100% Entertainment, this means providing 360-degree support they can rely on – from our 24/7 customer service staff to our on-site support team – combined with best-in-class technology that puts them in control of their event and ticketing.

So if they want to make changes on the fly, check pre-sales, add dates or review the performance of their social campaigns, they can do all of those things with a single tap using the Eventbrite Organiser app on their mobile phone.

Would it be fair to say Ultra Australia’s 40,000 tickets have been Eventbrite Asia Pacific’s largest event to date?

In terms of the ticketing solution, the number of attendees, the on-site and customer service support our team offered, Ultra was the largest event we’ve worked on and reflects an exciting new growth chapter for Eventbrite in Australia.

When we first opened an office here in Melbourne in 2014, we had four staff who were focused almost entirely on business development.

Now we’re edging closer to 40 staff across Australia, New Zealand and Asia, including a highly-skilled on-site and field operations team and a 24/7 customer service team.

In growing out this functionality, we’re now well-equipped to serve the needs of larger and more complex events at scale, including festivals like Ultra, Beyond The Valley and Rainbow Serpent, where we’re tasked with bringing an exceptional festival experience to more than 20,000 attendees.

In Q1 2019 your San Francisco headquarters reported total paid tickets of 27 million, compared to 2018 Q1’s 24 million tickets. What percentage of those sales came from Australia and/or the Asia Pacific?

Eventbrite has processed more than 64 million tickets and powered more than 1.1 million events in the Asia Pacific region since 2012.

One of the most significant growth categories here in Australia has been music.

We’ve seen our music ticket sales grow by an average of 74% annually, with more than 3.3 million music tickets processed since we first opened our doors here in 2014.

We’re proud to be the ticketing company powering Australia’s live music industry, and we look forward to continuing to support independent Australian venues, promoters and festivals for many years to come.

Asia is a growing live market, why were Singapore and Hong Kong chosen first, and are you allowed to say what the next city will be?

Singapore and Hong Kong are two markets we view as strategic to Eventbrite’s long-term success.

We’ve experienced strong organic growth in the Asia Pacific region to date, and we’ve been impressed by the growing appetite for live experiences that exists in both Singapore and Hong Kong.

Research we commissioned earlier this year revealed that 95% of Singaporeans and 86% of Hongkongers attended at least one event in the past 12 months.

In both markets, 4 in 5 survey respondents indicated a preference for spending money on experiences over possessions.

Not only do we benefit from this growing trend, our platform is also helping event creators build businesses around experiences that help meet this demand from consumers who want to get out and do more.

How successful has your integration with Facebook been in terms of driving up ticketing numbers, and is it the same strike rate for Instagram, Spotify and YouTube?

It makes sense to sell tickets where your customers are spending the majority of their time.

Our integrations with Facebook, Instagram and Spotify do just that, by putting the right event in front of the right consumer at the right time, wherever they are online.

For venues, promoters and festivals, our integration with Facebook is particularly powerful.

With a two-tap native checkout flow, this integration offers a seamless purchase experience at natural points of discovery, enabling unprecedented audience reach and driving incremental ticket sales.

In terms of expansion, what do you regard as priorities for Eventbrite Asia Pacific for the rest of 2019?

There are secular tailwinds driving the market for live experiences, and we’ve enabled this experience economy on a global scale by empowering creators to flourish on our platform.

Within the Asia Pacific region specifically, the mid-market of live experiences is massive and growing.

We are focused on delivering the best-localised platform experience for customers in each of our markets and are pursuing multiple opportunities to build continued scale throughout APAC.

How has event ticketing changed in the last few years, and how will it change within the next five years?

I believe we’ll continue to see a spike in demand for unique live experiences.

Over the past several years it’s become clear that it’s not enough to put a popular DJ or artist in a venue and expect that it will sell out.

Events like the wildly successful Solomun gig at The Wool Shed last year prove that it’s not just about the music – customers are craving multi-faceted music events that offer something new and never-to-be-repeated, something they’ve never experienced before.

More than ever, people are placing a high value on differentiation and outstanding customer experience – and this is true of their ticket purchase experience as much as their experience of the event itself.

Related articles