Marketing Tool Thrills NYC

Thrillcall offers an option for venues to use their own product and unsold tickets to create buzz about events

  • by Jessica Boudevin
  • Published: June 27, 2012

Thrillcall hits the road. The company is officially launching its service in New York June 28.

Need to find out what’s going on in your town tonight and maybe even score a deal? There’s an app for that.

As of its New York City launch party June 28 featuring local artists Ra, Ra, Riot and Lissy Trulli, Thrillcall, a marketing and promotion app for ticket sales, will be officially launched in three cities. The service already extends to San Francisco and Los Angeles, and provides music listings for same-day events.

Thrillcall partners with venues to provide limited-time, exclusive offers.

Upcoming offers for New York include deals for the Governor’s Ball, VIP entry for shows at SummerStage, and a number of exclusive offers for CBGB Festival. Thrillcall is partnering with 15-20 entities in the city and expects to add more after the launch.

“We call San Francisco, L.A. and New York launched because there’s the expectation of programming on a daily basis,” said Matt Tomaszewicz. “We have offers live in other cities, but those three are the ones that people should expect to be able to check the app for new offers every day.”

In Los Angeles, users can expect to find exclusive offers from several Sunset Strip venues, Drai’s Hollywood, and both House of Blues Sunset and HOB Anaheim, among others.

Thrillcall used to seek out venues and partners; however, the launch parties have gotten the word about the app out to the point that venues are contacting the company looking to create offers for their shows.

In the case of Parish Entertainment Group, which has San Francisco-area venues The New Parish, Brick & Mortar, Hibiscus, The Rock Steady, and Place Pigalle, one of their music writers brought the app to their attention, thinking it could be a good marketing tool.

Thrillcall partners with the venue or artist to offer regular tickets or exclusive experiences for those with the app.

“They got my attention because that is the kind of thing we were looking to do with our brand: adding true value rather than offering discounted tickets,” said Kelsea Shanley, in charge of public relations at Parish Entertainment Group. Their venues see the most response when they offer exclusive items or experiences. “Things like a reserved seat at a general admission show, or a signed poster from the band, can make a real impact, because they are invaluable,” she added.

Thrillcall uses these exclusives to build buzz, not just relying on the popularity of a particular show to get people to buy their offers. The company doesn’t just buy a block of tickets and re-sell them, they work with the venue to re-package the tickets into more attractive packages.

“It’s an important distinction that we’re not a secondary market, but a marketing platform. We give the opportunity to the venue, promoter or artist to promote their show by using the content that’s at their disposal — their ticket,” said Tomaszewicz. “What that does is get word out on the show again because people share the offer with their friends in a text or on social networks, so whether those people buy the offer or not, now the show has been promoted using its own content.”

For the most part, Thrillcall earns a percentage of each ticket sold. A client comes to the company with a content offering, decides how many tickets they want to make available, and Thrillcall does the rest.

“We make more money the more tickets we sell,” said Tomaszewicz, “and that creates the initiative on our side to keep building our download rate and the number of people that we have paying attention to our offers.”

Ease of sharing on social sites is an important aspect of the Thrillcall app. Right now, the company is focusing on Facebook because their research has shown that there are stronger conversions on promotions and advertising on that site as opposed to twitter.

Thrillcall_in_action.pngThe Thrillcall app in action.

Thrillcall’s website launched in November 2008, and launched a mobile app February 2012 when it was discovered that the website had more than 30 percent of traffic from mobile devices.

“With a mobile device, you see more sharing on social networks; and there’s a stronger, more affluent, task-driven customer on mobile, not just someone browsing,” said Tomaszewiciz. Because of the task-oriented nature of mobile, “our conversion percentage for someone who opens the app to someone who buys an offer is outstanding. I would say conversion for a normal, primary ticketing company is anywhere from three to six percent, and ours is much higher than that.”

In addition to launch parties, Thrillcall has started putting on some events only available through the app.

“We did a secret show with Geographer around San Francisco’s Noise Pop Festival in February, as well as seven events I helped co-produce at South by Southwest this year,” said John Koch, Artist & Promotions Management for Thrillcall. “We typically do special events built off of pre-existing concerts and tours,” such as showcases, after-parties and secret shows.

These additional offers and experiences help keep the conversation going after an event is over.

“Every one at Parish Group is a live music fan first and we feel keeping the fans and the bands excited about each show is important,” said Shanley. Thrillcall is the marketing tool they use to perpetuate that excitement.

Interviewed for this story: John Koch, (415) 374-3923; Kelsea Shanley, (415) 845-9773; Matt Tomaszewicz, (415) 956-9180

  • by Jessica Boudevin
  • Published: June 27, 2012