Season Ticket Sales Update: Select-A-Seat

Published: April 16, 2011

In a brief break from the playoff news:

Folks have been talking about attendance for a while, so here is a post addressing it.  You ask, we provide. 

I was down at the Hornets’ Select-a-Seat event today. This event, for those who have never been, is where season ticket holders can walk around the Arena and check out seats they may like to add or to which they may relocate.  It’s a nice event.  Also, you can go downstairs and sit in the fancy seats and walk on the court.  It’s awesome to check out the Arena from the players’ perspective. 

It was a little busier in the parking lot and halls than I remember in prior years. They had some good deals going on, including a 20% discount for added seats and a 10% referral bonus. There are little tags placed on all the seats that are available, and let me tell you: There were less than I expected out there. 

It took me a while to go around to all my sections and consider what my ticket group members may want in terms of being relocated, and rep was super accomodating.  As such, I took the opportunity to chat my Rep up a bit. Sadly, I was not able to relocate any seats to superior ones that met our requirements, but I suppose this is good news . . . since they weren’t available.  There is some more good news following.

The conversation I had yielded:

Season ticket sales are projected to meet the 10,000 full season ticket goal

Season ticket sales to this point are around 7,250, with a goal of 7,300 by the end of today

The season ticket base is already 1,000 more than last year (remember that bit of analysis I quote that attendance is positively correlated to the PRIOR season’s performance?)

These are full season tickets, not including equivalents such as 2 half-season packages, etc.

The hardest to sells are the premium seats, which are the most expensive

The Hornets are last in the NBA in terms of businesses buying tickets

So, the news is good.  We are on track to meet the stated season ticket goal, and the I’m In campaign is doing it’s job so far.  The `fans’ are doing their job, but the businesses need to snatch up the premium seats.  The Hornets Business Council was formed with this as one of their goals.  The flap about the `fans’ not being fanatic as they need to be seems to be misplaced to a degree . . . perhaps a large one. 

From another angle here, based on my own back-of-the-envelope calculations, we’re about halfway to the 10,000 goal from the 5,000 estimated `automatic’ renewals.  Considering that the renewal season is about 2 months old, this is great. 

Curbing Enthusiasm here: This is an unofficial conversation with somone who could be in the know, but is not necessarily an authority. Sure, I could be getting fed a line. One could say that he has incentive to tell me seats are moving fast as a means to apply sales pressure on me. For a guy who has 12 seats, I’m not sure why this would be necessary. Based on the specificity and sharpness of the data, this seemed like nearly-real-time operational data, and sniffing data is kinda my thing . . . I, for one, take the data as an approximation to gospel (and for those who like etymology, you’ll love the word choice).

Also, the goal we set of 50 season tickets added by our own Hornets247 community is going well.  The blog itself added 4, thechosenuno added 2, I added 8 (including 2 more today bringing my total owned to 12), and (visit him, people), added 4.  That’s 20 of the 50.  I’m sure others have added (not just renewed), but haven’t mentioned it.  Mention it, folks.  Shout it, shout it, shout it out loud . . . We may already be at the goal for all I know, and I want to know!

It’s early yet, but just so you know, there is a season ticket area in the forum for you guys to discuss this very important topic, the very breath of the organization. With a stable income from a season ticket base, a discriminator between this market and others goes away, so relocation become less likely. Having a strong season ticket base also gives the Hornets more firepower when it comes to generating advertising money, which helps gets fun promos in the Arena, making the patrons happy so they renew, and on and on . . .

Don’t forget about the Hornets247 watch party!  This is NOT the Hornets one . . . this one is New Orleans and may have folks from each of the Hornets Blog “Five Families” there.  This could be the last one for a YEAR, so try your best.  Everyone there gets to see Joe’s cherubic countenance as an added bonus.


  1. Chris Trew

    April 16, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    Thanks, 42! Tremendous information and keep it coming. I feel like a spam robot typing this out but I truly am excited. Seriously, I am not a spam robot.

    • 420ftjesus

      April 16, 2011 at 5:29 pm


      You coming to the watch party?

      • ChrisTrewdotCom

        April 17, 2011 at 11:33 am

        I don’t live in Nola yet (July 1st!). But I wish!

  2. Mark

    April 16, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    As of last season, the Hornets had much more promotional events and involvement in their home games than I’ve seen in Dallas or Houston (with the pre-game partying and such).

    Just FYI.

  3. usufruct

    April 16, 2011 at 11:03 pm

    I was there today, and I, too, noticed the lack of seats for sale. It struck me as odd since I figured there would be tons of seats available. Frankly, I find it very hard to believe that season ticket sales have increased or will increase next year. I can think of very few reasons for someone new to spend a bunch of money and come on board right now. That said, I hope what you heard is true. I hope they have sold a bunch of new season tickets.

    On a related note, it pisses me off that you drop 10k on tickets–a number which you have dropped for the last umpteen years–and you don’t even get so much as a leftover bobblehead (last year’s gift). They didn’t even have any “I’m In” stuff to give away, and I need a new sign since someone stole mine. IMO, that’s just terrible marketing. Not knocking the ad campaign…just make sure the material is available to those who want it.

    • 420ftjesus

      April 16, 2011 at 11:54 pm

      If I may:

      There are discounts going on along with a strong marketing push while the team is going into the playoffs. We’ve been following all the shades of Gray, but many juat see it as ‘we are a contender.’ As you say, this is counter-intuitive to us, but its more common than the heavy study.

      Also, with the CBA looming, it’s actually potentially cheaper to get in now, as we will be refunded for missed games, or an incentive will be given to entice us to stick with the team financially. As I said, most will not see this, but some will and take a chance to add more seats… Like me…

      Also, there is a 10-game buyback next year, so really you only have to commit to about 30 games to ‘break even’, less if you have other discounts.

      Good info. We need to talk about these perceptions we have and how they relate to the facts.

      Your points about the I’m In materials are right on. Bull’s eye. I’ll write my rep or tell one at the party tomorrow if one shows up.

  4. James Grayson

    April 17, 2011 at 1:37 am

    Hey 42, maybe you should have a tab above where people can go directly to mention they’ve renewed that way people can see it clearer and contribute more to that section of the site. Rather than you having to relink which might be tiresome on your part.

    • 42

      April 17, 2011 at 2:10 am

      Always a pleasure to generate comments from the Grayson; these are highlights of my day, sir. I’m looking forward to seeing your mate at the party tomorrow.

      That’s a good idea. I think the proper place for this sort of thing for now is in our forum, with a periodic updates in the main area like this. We have been talking about getting a “playoff tab” going and some other things, but these things take time with Niall saving the world (literally). A similar sort of thing for this season ticket issue would be nice in the offseason when there isn’t much else happening.

      How do you guys handle such things?

      Feeding this information back is crucial, and showing folks that their contributions are meaningful to so many, I think, will foster more contributions.

      Beyond this, there are so many things people can do to help. I was at dinner at Nacho Mama’s before Roller Derby tonight (awesome, though our girls lost both bouts to really great teams who second lined with us . . . welcome to New Orleans, Indiana ladies!) and told a friend’s daughter that she could go to a Hornets game for $7. She didn’t know this. Bam, that’s a ticket.

      At any rate, thanks for the input.

      I have some ideas on this front and others, but I’ll save them for the off-season. It’s going to be a long one, probably, so we’ll need something to pass the time.

      Again, always a pleasure.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.