1000heads: Ticketmaster: Social Ticketing

This morning, Mashable is reporting the launch of Ticketmaster‘s latest layer of Facebook integration, a move that allows users to see exactly where their Facebook friends will be sitting at various different events and gigs across the globe.

Live on over 9000 events across the Ticketmaster website, the new interactive map enables seat tagging, which will post to your Facebook wall requesting (or nudging) your friends to do the same.

Got that? No? Try watching this 80 second explanation –

Social ticketing is something we’ve talked about before here at the ‘heads, but that was more around using social media to reward regular attendees with loyalty points and bonuses. What Ticketmaster have done here – really quite well – is taken the Facebook social graph API and applied it to their own site.

In a similar way that Trip Advisor change the structure of what you’re looking at depending on your friends’ purchasing decisions after their experiences, Ticketmaster has taken a step forward by showing the purchasing decision before the experience. Enabling friends to buy tickets whenever they want instead of waiting and waiting until they’re able to get their tickets at the same time.

I’m reminded of something that o2’s Head of Social Media, Alex Pearmain, said at the Social Media Influence conference back in June –

“How much are we seeing of social brought into commerce rather commerce being brought into social?”

Setting up shop in a Facebook tab is [relatively] easy by comparison, so why not consider changing your customers’ web experience based upon their Facebook preferences as they travel around your website? 

To top it off, Ticketmaster’s research suggests that every time a ticket purchase is shared through social, that converts to an extra five dollars in additional ticket sales. Social media integration moving the sales needle? Perfection. Definitely something to keep an eye on in the future.

Irrespective of your feelings around the Ticketmaster brand, this new feature is smart, useful and ultimately beneficial to the end customer. Well done.