The pop star Taylor Swift’s business acumen is once again in full display as she comes up with a novel way to solve an age old economic problem.
The problem is as follows: when the tickets for a rock concert are sold, the fans who buy the tickets tend to span a wide spectrum of income levels (from students through to HNWs). Historically, the concert organisers would price the tickets at an “average” level to ensure that they cover all of these income categories. However, that would immediately lead to a black market wherein richer (or keener) fans would buy the tickets from poorer (less avid) fans. What Taylor Swift seems to have done with help from Ticketmaster is to have circumvented this problem by getting fans to show their hand early (and thus giving herself a chance to price them to perfection).
For the tour supporting her latest album, “…she initially only sold tickets to those who registered weeks ahead of time through Ticketmaster’s new technology, called Verified Fan. Ms Swift added an additional hurdle to potential touts, unveiling a points system that gives fans who watched her videos or bought merchandise a better chance at buying tickets. Later, tickets were released on general sale but at steeper prices, with the best seats running into the thousands of dollars, slicing the arbitrage opportunity for touts.”
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