Tips for Selling Tickets Online for a Theater Production

Hosting a theater production is a great way to connect with locals, while also providing an opportunity for talented actors and actresses to showcase their skills.

When you are planning a theater production, managing the logistics of marketing the event and selling tickets online and in-person can cause you to feel overwhelmed or unsure of where to begin. Use the following tips for selling tickets online at your next theater production to generate interest in your event while simultaneously encouraging ticket sales.Theatre-production-performance-on-stage

1. Find an event registration software that works for you

First thing is first. If you want to sell online, you need a registration platform to manage credit card payments, create custom ticket types, etc. 

Using an event registration platform is one of the most convenient solutions for event planners today and comes with many benefits like: 

  • The ability to collect payments online
  • Desktop and mobile purchases on the go
  • The ability to find your event posted online
  • Reports and analytics
  • Custom event pages and ticket types/packages
  • Reduces workload and fewer errors


2. Consider your target demographics and how to reach them

It is important to consider the audience and demographics you intend to reach with the play or production itself. The demographics, or the age range, gender, and location of your target audience can help you determine what types of tickets you will sell, preferred ticket options, show times, etc. 

While attempting to determine the demographics you wish to target, consider special groups that you may want to keep in mind once you designate ticket types. Common ticket types may include student, senior, veteran, and military ticket types.

Consider the following when researching your intended demographics: 

  • Age * Can help identify if they are tech-savvy enough for online ticket sales
  • Gender
  • Cultural background/education/history * Anything that might connect them to your show
  • Family status
  • Where do they hang out? How can you reach them?


3. Assigned seating

For most theater, assigned seating and seating maps are suitable and often extremely beneficial. For other events, they may cause aggravation and confusion among guests. Before choosing whether to incorporate seating maps, charts, and assigned seating in your next theater production, be sure to compare both the pros and cons.


Some benefits of seating map at an event include:

  • Crowd control and social distancing is applicable 

  • Provides a visual guide for attendees when selecting their seats

  • Avoids confusion among guests who are unsure of where to sit

  • Tired pricing options (guests can pay more for closer seats)


Some cons or drawbacks of using seating maps and assigned seating at a theater production event might include:

  • Promoters need to create a seating chart (however, Purplepass will create one for you free of charge)
  • It can be time-consuming if you need multiple charts or have a large floor plan
  • Guest's can't change their minds about seating arrangements



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4. Collect donations along with ticket sales online

Hosting a theater production is not cheap, nor does it only require a few days of planning. If you are working with volunteers or a local group of actors, consider collecting donations for support.


Offering supporters the opportunity to donate to your theater production group with the use of an online platform or solution is a great way to significantly increase the overall amount of donations you can receive.


5. Create an online presence

If you want to promote a theater production or if you are thinking of selling tickets online, you will need to create an online presence for your theater production or any theater group you represent. This might include: 

  • An official website
  • A blog
  • Social media accounts 
  • An event page with ticket links

Having a website or an event page provides a digital platform to offer information regarding the upcoming theater production, location details, venue guidelines, and more. Use your online presence to showcase the talents and skills of cast members, while also providing links to merchandise and suitable ticket types for all users.

If you are new to designing or building websites, no need to fret. There are many free services and web-building platforms, such as Wix and WordPress, that provide guidance and free templates to help you get started. You can then use widgets from ticketing platforms such as Purplepass that can be integrated directly into your website for ticket and merchandise sales.


6. Offer hybrid event options

Another way to increase ticket sales for an upcoming theater production you are planning and managing is to offer hybrid event options. After the COVID-19 pandemic, many individuals have transitioned to working remotely and even attending events remotely for their own health and safety, and those around them.

Hosting a hybrid theater event with online or virtual showings can significantly increase ticket sales and overall attendance. Some advantages of hosting hybrid events online, virtually, and even with live-streaming include:

  • The ability to maximize your reach and reach millions of prospective viewers and/or attendees

  • Reach attendees who will pay for a ticket but have no way to attend in person

  • Spread brand awareness and online visibility with the use of a virtual event

  • An option for friends or family out of town



Livestreaming widget for promoters

Purplepass offers a live stream widget
for streaming events directly on your website.


7. Ticket support for multiple showings

You should always offer multiple showings of any theater production you are hosting. With a platform such as Purplepass, you can easily manage multiple showings for one event without the hassle and from one central dashboard.


8. Merchandise sales (online and in-person)

Selling merchandise for a theater production is a significant source of revenue, regardless of how large the production is or the number of attendees you receive. Selling ticket add-ons as well as merchandise online can help to streamline any event you are hosting by:

  • Allowing attendees the opportunity to purchase merchandise ahead of time

  • Freeing up space for more people to purchase merchandise in person

  • Preventing lines and traffic from building, which can discourage those who intend to shop in person

  • An easy checkout experience 
  • Sell more than merchandise; concessions, drink, food add-ons. 

drink-add-ons-PurplepassYou can also consider offering ticket add-ons online, which can save time for those handling ticket sales and customer service on the actual day of the theater production event.


9. Use talent and cast to broaden your reach

Think of it like affiliate/referral marketing.

Work together with the cast and talent of the event you are hosting to help promote your event’s online ticketing and merchandise platform together. You can also provide your talent and cast with special links to share with family and friends with the hopes of generating additional ticket and merchandise sales, both online and in person.


10. Offer exclusive discount codes and promos

Use discount codes to encourage ticket sales for an upcoming theater production. Offer discount codes for those who are early to the sale, senior citizens, or even those who were referred to the online portal to purchase tickets from a cast member.

You can also consider offering discounts to those who plan to attend in groups or interested in seasonal theater production passes, depending on the type of productions and events you intend to host.

different-student-discout-codes-for-ticketsTheater productions do not have to feel tedious to manage, even if you are planning and hosting many productions and events throughout the year.

With a proper ticketing platform such as Purplepass, maximize your reach and ability to sell tickets to attendees in all age groups and demographics. Using a proper ticketing platform can remove the guesswork from the event-planning process while streamlining the act of managing seating, total tickets sold, and even the sale of vendor merchandise.

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