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Telly33

Filling the Ralph

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I know, I know, first world problems and every other program in the country would kill for our attendance.  But, how do we get over the hump and get the building filled up for home games like it used to be?  So far this year and last we've seen virtually entire sections in the upper bowl empty and thin in other places.  

I guess the first step is to identify the cause.  Has the experience as a whole worn thin?   Is it the cost?  Is it the team?  Is it ticketholders no-showing and eating the tickets or trying to scalp them for too much?  Will the football home schedule being over help? 

I think the lack of flashy high end talent of years past is part of the problem and that's not an easy one to solve.  But, one idea would be to implement a system where season ticketholders can release tickets they know they're not going to use back into the ticket pool to be sold at a discounted price (or even face) by the REA.  It could be setup where as long as you release them 48-72 hrs. before the game it doesn't matter if your actual ticket sells, you still get something back.  So for example if 100 tickets were released for a particular game for $50/each and 75 of them ended up getting sold then each person that released a ticket would get $37.50 back per ticket whether their actual seats sold or not.  There could be one price level for the lower bowl and a cheaper one for the upper bowl with separate ticketholder pools for each.  The REA wouldn't charge a fee for this (or a very nominal one).  Their benefit is getting butts in the seats and spending money in the building that wouldn't be there otherwise.

I think there's two basic groups of ticketholders, the ones that think their tickets are worth $100/each and the ones that could care less about the tickets if they can't make the game and just eat them.  I know a lot of people that won't bother going through the headache of posting their tickets for sale and meeting up with a person to exchange, etc.  

At the end of the day it's your ticket to do with as you wish though.  This system wouldn't do anything about the people who are just going to post their tickets for $150 each on TicketMaster Resale no matter what, but at least it would be a hassle-free system with one click or phone call for the people who want to see their tickets get used and be guaranteed a little something back in return at the same time.

 

Any other ideas?

 

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Some interesting ideas but why would the REA help facilitate the resale of tickets they have already gotten paid for (and passing the money on to others) instead of the empty seats that haven't been bought yet? 

Ticket holders can already resell tickets on Ticketmaster very easily, however there is a floor on what those tickets can be listed for, which is the equivalent of face value on unsold tickets. You aren't going to get much closer than that. 

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25 minutes ago, Telly33 said:

I know, I know, first world problems and every other program in the country would kill for our attendance.  But, how do we get over the hump and get the building filled up for home games like it used to be?  So far this year and last we've seen virtually entire sections in the upper bowl empty and thin in other places.  

I guess the first step is to identify the cause.  Has the experience as a whole worn thin?   Is it the cost?  Is it the team?  Is it ticketholders no-showing and eating the tickets or trying to scalp them for too much?  Will the football home schedule being over help? 

I think the lack of flashy high end talent of years past is part of the problem and that's not an easy one to solve.  But, one idea would be to implement a system where season ticketholders can release tickets they know they're not going to use back into the ticket pool to be sold at a discounted price (or even face) by the REA.  It could be setup where as long as you release them 48-72 hrs. before the game it doesn't matter if your actual ticket sells, you still get something back.  So for example if 100 tickets were released for a particular game for $50/each and 75 of them ended up getting sold then each person that released a ticket would get $37.50 back per ticket whether their actual seats sold or not.  There could be one price level for the lower bowl and a cheaper one for the upper bowl with separate ticketholder pools for each.  The REA wouldn't charge a fee for this (or a very nominal one).  Their benefit is getting butts in the seats and spending money in the building that wouldn't be there otherwise.

I think there's two basic groups of ticketholders, the ones that think their tickets are worth $100/each and the ones that could care less about the tickets if they can't make the game and just eat them.  I know a lot of people that won't bother going through the headache of posting their tickets for sale and meeting up with a person to exchange, etc.  

At the end of the day it's your ticket to do with as you wish though.  This system wouldn't do anything about the people who are just going to post their tickets for $150 each on TicketMaster Resale no matter what, but at least it would be a hassle-free system with one click or phone call for the people who want to see their tickets get used and be guaranteed a little something back in return at the same time.

 

Any other ideas?

 

The place I see the most sparse at the hockey games is the student section.  I would think the Ralph would be interested in selling some of those seats.   By the way, I would pay more money to get seats in the lower bowl, as would others, so maybe take away a section from students in the lower bowl and give them more seats up top where the empty seats are, and sell them to those who are willing to be at another Champions Club level. 

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The Ralph could sponsor an esports tournament for students with consoles in their seats when a game is on.  Maybe an e-dating site where everyone can be quickly rejected.  Just some ideas to entice students to come.

Or just reduce the ticket prices for students or at least allow them four games each for free.  

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12 minutes ago, jdub27 said:

Some interesting ideas but why would the REA help facilitate the resale of tickets they have already gotten paid for (and passing the money on to others) instead of the empty seats that haven't been bought yet?

True and I did consider that.  I guess I'm not privy to what the actual numbers look like as far as how many of these seats are just general admission tickets that went unsold and how many are ticketholder no-shows.  Maybe there's some sort of a hybrid to my idea in there somewhere.  But regardless of why the seat is empty, it's to the Ralph's benefit to get butts in those seats one way or the other though.  Is there no longer a waiting list for season tickets or is that just for lower bowl seats?

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29 minutes ago, Telly33 said:

But regardless of why the seat is empty, it's to the Ralph's benefit to get butts in those seats one way or the other though.

Which is why they put energy into selling unsold tickets not selling already sold tickets.

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57 minutes ago, tnt said:

The place I see the most sparse at the hockey games is the student section.  I would think the Ralph would be interested in selling some of those seats.   By the way, I would pay more money to get seats in the lower bowl, as would others, so maybe take away a section from students in the lower bowl and give them more seats up top where the empty seats are, and sell them to those who are willing to be at another Champions Club level. 

Aren't unclaimed student seats already resold?

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48 minutes ago, InHeavenThereIsNoBeer said:

Go rid of HD quality television feed

There you go.  That's a big reason why people might choose to stay at home. 

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3 minutes ago, burd said:

There you go.  That's a big reason why people might choose to stay at home. 

Hundred bucks for two people to see western Michigan after ticket ba...ard’s fees. Or 100 bucks for a year of nchc tv since we don’t have midco. 

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I believe I saw on facebook that if you visit a local Hugo's you can get a $25 ticket voucher to this week's games. That'd bring your ticket price down to $20/25 for this weekend. I believe you also get a free FH towel at the box office when you use the voucher as well FWIW

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5 minutes ago, InHeavenThereIsNoBeer said:

I believe I saw on facebook that if you visit a local Hugo's you can get a $25 ticket voucher to this week's games. That'd bring your ticket price down to $20/25 for this weekend. I believe you also get a free FH towel at the box office when you use the voucher as well FWIW

I saw that too. And I was like great! But then I remembered when you live in Fargo, it defeats the purpose because of gas prices. 

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42 minutes ago, fightingsioux4life said:

Aren't unclaimed student seats already resold?

I believe they are on Thursday, but when you have a chance to sell them as season tickets and assure the seats will be paid for and used, why not go that direction.  I don't know if they sell them for the same price as they do at the door, but perhaps they might want to lower those prices a bit, as they seem kind of high for last second people to change their mind on what they want to do on the weekend.  

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Obviously people go to the games to watch the team play live.  But you need to look past that to keep people coming and to get new fans to make the commitment to pay the price for tickets/parking/food/etc as opposed to just watching it at home.  College attendance for many sports is decreasing.  Especially in the student section.  Not school is immune from this.  Ticket prices at the Ralph are also getting to a point where it is getting really expensive, especially families, to go to games.  

The one thing that UND has done, but can do a better job at, is the in game experience.  Football has done a great job with improvements they have made to tailgating, in game entertainment, branding at the Alerus, etc.  the committee they formed to focus on that really has done a great job.  The hockey program doesn't need to work as hard to market the game experience.  Year in and year out we are National Title contender and have always had high end talent on the ice.  Not to mention a facility that is the top in college hockey.  But UND and the Ralph can't just bank on that and think it will be that way forever and get lazy with their marketing of the product and appealing to the paying customers that walk through the doors.  Maybe a committee similar to the Football game day experience committee needs to be formed to ensure that the hockey game day experience continues to be the best in the country. 

 

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3 minutes ago, Siouxperfan7 said:

Obviously people go to the games to watch the team play live.  But you need to look past that to keep people coming and to get new fans to make the commitment to pay the price for tickets/parking/food/etc as opposed to just watching it at home.  College attendance for many sports is decreasing.  Especially in the student section.  Not school is immune from this.  Ticket prices at the Ralph are also getting to a point where it is getting really expensive, especially families, to go to games.  

The one thing that UND has done, but can do a better job at, is the in game experience.  Football has done a great job with improvements they have made to tailgating, in game entertainment, branding at the Alerus, etc.  the committee they formed to focus on that really has done a great job.  The hockey program doesn't need to work as hard to market the game experience.  Year in and year out we are National Title contender and have always had high end talent on the ice.  Not to mention a facility that is the top in college hockey.  But UND and the Ralph can't just bank on that and think it will be that way forever and get lazy with their marketing of the product and appealing to the paying customers that walk through the doors.  Maybe a committee similar to the Football game day experience committee needs to be formed to ensure that the hockey game day experience continues to be the best in the country. 

 

I am not sure a committee is needed with Jody Hodgson running things but I do think they need to continue to improve the gameday experience and never rest on their laurels. I think this season they did a great job with all of the gameday experience updates.

https://fightinghawks.com/news/2018/10/4/mens-hockey-ralph-engelstad-arena-announces-improvements-to-fan-experience.aspx

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Thank/blame the new tax code. Season tickets are no longer federally deductible. But the good news is rich kids don't have to worry about their 7 figure inheritance being taxed!

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3 hours ago, Cratter said:

Which is why they put energy into selling unsold tickets not selling already sold tickets.

Maybe it's just my imagination, but I think there's a big misconception out there that the games are generally sold out.  It's why you see people paying more than face and why you see people with upper bowl tickets marking them up on the secondary market.  Maybe they're doing all they can to get the word out that tickets are still available and maybe they're not.  There's also a segment of the market that will pay face value (or more) for lower bowl tickets, but aren't interested in upper bowl seats at all and would rather stay home instead.  The general admission tickets available are almost exclusively upper bowl, so I think there's room for my idea as well as others.

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1 hour ago, runaroundsioux said:

Close the bars. That would put 500 people back in their seats. 

Fair point.  They do sell SRO tickets though so that might account for a decent chunk of the people packed into the bars.

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IMO its the cost of a ticket that keeps me on my couch watching on TV.  Playoff games are cheaper than regular season games.  I have a family of 3 and we can easily drop $200 just for tickets and gas.  Not to mention my wife and daughters frequent visits to the concession stands every other icing call.

 

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