Tickets, bookings… you’d be forgiven for assuming that they are pretty much the same thing. We often use the two terms interchangeably and, after all, you have to book tickets to attend events, don’t you?!
Despite their perceived similarities, there are several key differences. The two systems may work in tandem, but they operate in vastly different ways, and offer distinct enhancements to your chosen business model. For some, a reliable booking system is all they need; for others, ticketing lies at the core of their profit-making; and finally, for those in between, a mix of ticketing and bookings is required for different aspects of their business. They are many disparate ways in which you can use both ticketing and booking to enhance your business. Let’s talk you through the how and why.
Customers will wait in anticipation for their favourite events to release tickets, hunched over their laptops to make sure they’re first in the digital queue. Tickets will usually go live at a specific time and there will be a finite amount of space at each event. As a result, they often need a different distribution model to ensure that events are promoted sufficiently and that they gain enough attention both from consumers and third-party companies. Selling tickets is often a more time-consuming task – it requires an extra level of promotional effort from everybody involved. At Booked it, we’re aware of this. That’s why our system comes with a catalogue of third-party companies, all available to you and your business, to ensure your event is reaching as many people as possible. With advanced statistics regarding the reach and audience of each company, it’s difficult to go wrong when you’re selling tickets through Booked it.
In contrast, bookings are often more readily available (although throughout the pandemic, it has often felt as though they are a scarce resource). Booking slots don’t have a specific release date and they don’t generate queues. However, whilst ticketing systems become crowded at specific times, booking systems are often regularly in high demand at a steadier rate. People use them more often and, as a result, they require constant care and monitoring to ensure they are constantly running smoothly. That’s why, at Booked it, we have multiple servers to guarantee the functioning of our system, and account managers are on hand 24/7 to provide a direct point of contact should problems occur.
2. Access management
We have established now that ticketing generates more intense periods of ticket purchasing; however, these brief spikes are often punctuated by gulfs in user activity. In the same way, event attendees often arrive in larger quantities within a short space in time, and therefore require more concentrated, immediate attention. At Booked it, we’re always one step ahead of the crowd – literally. Using our software, it’s easy to manage guests as they arrive in real-time. Scanning their tickets, directing them to their designated area, and bringing their details up in an instant if needs be – it’s never been easier. For large scale events, we can provide you venue with a range of hardware and devices from handheld scanners through to RFID wristbands. This will make it easier for teams of your staff to oversee a large quantity of guests simultaneously.
For bookings, a different approach is required. We’ve already said that bookings occur more often, and at a steadier rate. Whilst this may appear less demanding, bookings require constant vigilance to run smoothly. With bookings, customers are arriving at your venue all the time, each expecting to receive a certain level of customer service. This means your staff must be always attentive – before, during, and after each booking. You can make things easier for them by getting your software you do the heavy lifting. Our software comes with full web integration, easy enquiry management, and automated SMS and email messaging, so your focus on the customer never falters.
The last distinction between tickets and bookings lies in the features Booked it uses to enhance the user experience. For ticket buying, we have so many add-ons that supplement and strengthen our software. We can create individual referral links, provide waiting lists and resales, and offer full refund protection (if the customer pays an extra fee). That’s just the tip of the iceberg, as we also offer pre-registration to guarantee that customers will be first in the queue, security and fraud protection to ensure that your system in never compromised, and even the option to print tickets if customers feel more secure with their tickets in hard-copy form.
Our booking software has many tried-and-tested features that make your life easier every day. We’ve already mentioned the full web integration and automated messaging service, but did you know that it can also run birthday campaigns, direct marketing, and customer reports that will enable you to make informed choices about where you’re going right and where you’re going wrong? We tailor our approach to you – not the other way around.
Tickets and bookings are just what we do at Booked it. We understand the nuances involved with each process, and have tailored our software accordingly. Check out the key differences for yourself, here and here.
Words by Rebecca Clayton
The night time economy has been one of the sectors hardest hit by the pandemic- with doors firmly shut for the entirety. This £66bn industry is the fifth largest industry in the UK employing around 8% of the UK’s workforce. A massive 60% of town centre revenue is generated after 6pm, and for every £10 spent in a live music venue, £17 more is spent in the local economy. Nightclubs, festivals and live music venues like yours are desperate to get back to doing what you do best- creating the best events and experiences. Here is our 5 step guide for reopening.
1. Turn on bookings now. As much as nightclubs, festivals and live music venues are chomping at the bit to open up again, your customers are just as keen to get back to partying. Nothing can replace that feeling of anticipation for a live event, festival or night out, getting it booked and looking forward to it for weeks, and even months. So give your customers something to plan for and turn on bookings. With Booked it’s booking and reservations system, you can take bookings quickly and easily, as far in advance as you like.
2. Build up to the opening. Clubs are set to open again in June. In a normal world, you’re so busy with the day to day running of your events, having the time to create truly spectacular campaigns is thin on the ground. But here, you have an opportunity to plan a campaign around reopening, building momentum and excitement for opening day.
3. Start selling gift cards. With everyone locked down for months on end, the one thing people want as a present is an experience. Sure, they can’t experience your venue right now, but what they can have is a gift card to experience it in the future. The gift card market in the UK was worth a huge £7bn in 2019, and the demand isn’t going anywhere soon. With your own gift card, people can buy packages, tickets or just spend it on drinks on their night out. Booked it can help you to introduce your own gift card- improving cash flow now.
4. Listen to customer feedback. Feedback from your customers is some of the very best business advice you’ll ever get. Use the time between now and reopening to review the customer feedback you’ve had over the last few years, sorting through what’s important with what’s not and implementing the relevant improvements.
5. Work on a sustainable model. As well as the reopening, think longer term too. Every nightclub, festival and live music venue will be a sell out when the doors open, but the challenge for every venue is how to sustain the interest when the buzz of not partying for 18 months inevitably fades. Think about your CRM and loyalty, what will follow your reopening campaign? Answer these questions and you’ll have a sustainable model for the future.
Talk to Booked it today for a range of technology solutions designed for the night time economy.
Festivals, live music events and club nights are all about freedom, fun and the pure joy of living life. The last thing your customers want to worry about is where to stash their cash. Going cashless for your large scale events will be a big winner with your customers, and it’s proven to increase spend per head by over 30%. Here are the 6 reasons to make your large scale event cashless using the new generation of RFID cashless payment technology from Booked it.
1. It’s better for cashflow. Buying the tickets, finding a new outfit, getting topped up with credit. With an RFID cashless payment solution, getting topped up with credit to spend on the night becomes an integral part of the pre event preparation. And because most customers top up in advance, that’s really good news for your cashflow.
2. It’s more hygienic. We’ve always known that cash isn’t clean because of the fact that it gets passed about from person to person. And in the pandemic, keeping your event as hygienic as possible is your priority. Statistics show that money changes hands over 50 times, and viruses can live on the surface of cash for 72 hours. Go cashless and these problems and more are eradicated.
3. It’s more efficient. Using cash equals more time at the bar for your customers and less time enjoying the event. Once they’ve got their RFID wristband on though, paying for food and drinks is completed with a quick tap of the wrist. They get their drinks quicker and you get less queues at the bar, quicker turnaround for orders and a more efficient bar overall. The RFID technology even works offline, so if your event is out in the sticks, it can still have top notch tech.
4. It’s easy to top up at the event. We’ve all done it. Smashed through the money you bought with you (or loaded onto your wristband) way too soon, but the event is so good there’s no way you’re going home yet. To keep the event bouncing, top ups can take place at an onsite kiosk or straight from your customers’ phones.
5. It’s easy to get customer insights. Post event, and as well as the clean-up, it’s time for the analysis. What bars performed well, what did customers buy, how much did they spend? This is all vital information to plan and improve your next event. And it’s all available from your RFID cashless payment solution dashboard. You can even use the dashboard during the event to prevent stock-outs. No-one wants to miss out on their favourite drink at a festival!
6. It’s not as expensive as you might think. All that cutting edge technology has to be expensive, right? Actually, the RFID tech is available from just £1 per wristband, with no set up fees, no contracts and all of the support you need to make the switch to cashless for your events. Let the cashless partying commence!