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Timmy Metzner
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Grow arts and culture revenue

Success Story: Incremental Income at Arizona Opera


Arizona Opera had only minimal experience with dynamic pricing when they began working with JCA Arts Marketing, but brought an openness and flexibility to our retainer relationship that allowed us to march right into unexplored territory. Each week, we collaborated with Arizona Opera to review the Dashboards, Zone Reports, and Sales Curves to identify inventory that could benefit from a price adjustment.

At first, the team went for the low-hanging fruit. Sunday matinees had a history of being hugely popular, and with Madama Butterfly, Arizona Opera had a program that was sure to be a big hit. Together, we made adjustments on the inventory that displayed the highest demand, and earned a considerable of incremental income. It was very exciting to see the growth of that little strip of teal RMA users come to know as the fruits of their labor.

But real opportunity came when, monitoring our Sales Curve report, they noticed that the sales cycle of an unknown work called Riders of the Purple Sage was starting to follow the pattern of blockbusters like Carmen and Butterfly. It didn’t seem right, as the company’s projections (as well as precedent for new work) predicted modest revenue. But, failing to find any human error, the team accepted that Arizona Opera had an unexpected hit on their hands.

So they raised prices.

Tentatively at first, and just where demand was highest. There was no price resistance. Instead, the show continued to gain momentum. Excellent press and strong marketing pieces continued to drive sales, and the team adjusted prices in advance of each bump.

The moral of the story is this: due to monitoring Sales Curves, when the first performance sold out, Arizona Opera had already been making calculated price adjustments for just under 6 months. Which meant $14,000 in income earned as the direct result of dynamic pricing. If the team had just been looking at % capacity, we may not have noticed this anomaly until much later, leaving a great deal of money on the table—every marketing director’s nightmare.