[Today, a guest post from Matt (mattmc89). -R]
So, keeping Hornets basketball in New Orleans may come down to ticket sales. If you're reading this blog, you're probably not a part of the problem of ticket sales. But are you part of the solution? I find in my travels there are a lot of inaccuracies, misconceptions, and a lot of fundamental misunderstanding about how ticket sales can be increased or how the average Joe can help keep the Hornets in NOLA. We, as fans, have to be the best advertisers the Hornets have. We are the ones that are True Believers. We have to do our part and if we've been passive about it in the past, we have to be more active now. The big question is 'how'?
For one, we need to have the facts about what will and won't boost the sales numbers. If you've been following the blogs recently, you probably have already been talking about it. For one thing, shun the re-selling sites. Stubhub resells tickets. Its great if the game is sold out, but bad for the bottom line ticket sales numbers. Ticketmaster and the Hornets website are the keys. If you choose the option for will-call, there is no extra delivery charge (although you will pay your Ticketmaster tax). There are 10 sections in the upper deck with tickets for sale starting at $12.25. Second row behind the basket is $16.25. A center court ticket, second row ticket in the upper deck for tonight's Pistons game is $50. Prices in the lower bowl start at $57.75. For a lot of people, price is an obstacle. It might not be if they could see the game for less than $20. And most importantly - BUY NEW! Skip the exchange option. They already count towards the ticket count total. Finally, there are no bad seats at the Arena. I have a scar on my hand where a Peja Stoyakovic three-point shot inspired me to stand up and punch straight up…and into the cement ceiling.
But most of all you have talk about it. Talk to strangers. Do it enough and people will ask you. Don’t be shy! Butt into conversations and feel free to interrupt. Last night on the shuttle, one of the passengers was making small talk about the Hornets with the driver. I interrupted him and starting talking about the Hornets: ownership, ticket sales, What It All Means. And I told him (loudly so others could hear) what a shame it would be if we lost the team and how a small donation to the cause of $12.25 could make a difference. I told him what fun it is to be at the game. I told him how basketball is enjoyable to women and the team has a popular Ladies Night (as well as Guys Night). Most of the people on the shuttle are professionals, so aren’t going to starve kicking down less than $20. By the time I was done, he was talking about getting the people in his office together to buy tickets as a group. He also was talking about buying cheap tickets just to bump sales. Others on the bus asked questions. I did my good deed for the hour.
If we want the Hornets to stay, we can't wait for Hugh to come up with a better marketing plan. We have to sell the team, on the street if necessary. We have to show the population that the team is popular. That there ARE Hornets fans out there and we want the team to stay and why.
So, why are you still reading this? GET GOING!