- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On February 2, 2009
- 10 Comments
- Attendance Figures, Season Tickets
During a rough economy one would think people would be less willing to spend extra cash on any sort of sporting events. Espically ones that come at a high price. Lucky enough for MLS that isn’t the case. Tickets aren’t nearly as expensive as they are in other sporting leagues in the country and now the league is seeing growth in season ticket sales.
The Sports Business Journal is reporting that at least 10 of the 15 clubs are ahead of season ticket renewals from last year. Only Houston was reported to be on par with 2008 sales. More positive note to hear that clubs like Colorado and Salt Lake are ahead of last year’s totals.
The New England Revolution, which sells a 20-game season-ticket package for $375 to $400, has increased its season-ticket base with new sales and is renewing at a 70 percent rate, said Chief Operating Officer Brian Bilello. To improve its value proposition, it has developed deferred payment plans for the first time and a formal ticket exchange policy that allows season-ticket holders to turn in tickets to a game they canít attend in exchange for tickets for a game they can attend.
The San Jose Earthquakes are working the youth soccer ranks and the Hispanic community to unearth new season-ticket sales. The club is working with hundreds of youth soccer clubs to sell tickets in exchange for a percentage of the sales, and it partnered with local Hispanic grocery stores to have them sell season and group tickets, as well as a Mexico match to which the franchise is playing host.
The Chicago Fireís effort to drive new ticket sales relies heavily on a $99 season ticket that gives fans general admission seating in the upper level of the stadium for 15 games. And the Los Angeles Galaxy has begun giving discounts to season-ticket holders who provide a lead for new season-ticket prospects.
Of course clubs like Toronto and Seattle are doing fine as far as tickets go. We’ve seen and heard their numbers before so we know they are fine.
Only FC Dallas, Kansas City, Chivas and New York were unable to report numbers.
Its a positive thing for the league to see this many clubs on the rise for season ticket renewals. One would have thought in a down economy that people would be less willing to fork over cash for tickets. Turns out they are willing to. Plus it doesn’t hurt as much that season tickets for most clubs are in a reasonable range.
As far as FC Dallas is concerned, it isn’t shocking to see them not return calls for this report. Around town you see very little in terms of marketing of the club, even during the season. You’d think they would want more fans in their new(ish) stadium but their marketing is still not in right direction of where it needs to be. Now that is another story for another day. I can’t comment on the same for Chivas, KC or New York.