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Box Office ROI: Is Your Box Office Delivering Value?

Helen Collins
5 December 2017
Box Office ROI: Is Your Box Office Delivering Value?

Your team will end up spending time and energy (and money) on work arounds, instead of where they really need to focus. In this post, we’re asking . . .is your box office platform delivering real ROI?

The Basics of ROI

When we are looking at ROI, we can look at it regarding positive ROI and negative ROI. Negative ROI is when, for example, your team spends all its time dealing with email broadcast issues rather than it being a simple process. Technology, in this case, is wasting time and money - and giving not much back. Positive ROI is when your team can use technology efficiently, and your return on investment is equal or more. Technology, in this case, is giving a lot back. Looking at ROI is useful for when you are planning on changing your platform of course, e.g., is this new provider worth the money. But looking at ROI can also help analyse past investment decisions rationally, and help you move on if you must. Ask yourself: is what you’re doing/using now helping you reach your goals? How is what you’re doing/using augmenting your digital strategy? Are you building more meaningful relationships with your customer base.? Are you re-engaging effectively with lapsed customers? Are you being informed about best practice?

Get the Whole Picture

Keep in mind when evaluating ROI you need to take a look at the whole picture, not just the impact of a particular technology’s affect on one area of your theatre or venue. For example, box office platforms and solutions, impact much more than just the box office. A well-integrated platform can have benefits to marketing, management, and even help support your brand. Conversely, a poorly implemented solution can negatively impact all areas of your arts organisation.

Lifetime Cost

ROI also goes beyond just cost versus net gain. Take for example, for a box office platform with license fees or user limits. As your box office grows, so do your costs, thus increasing the lifetime cost of that investment. While that will always happen to some degree, it should not hinder your growth. Consider also any added support plans or maintenance and upgrade costs. These can all impact the total ROI from your investment over time.

Opportunity Cost

Opportunity cost means the missed chance to do something else that might have saved or made your venue money. For example, if your team is spending too much time on work arounds for example, instead of being able to work on other areas of your organisation, this could significantly impact your revenues. Consider as well, any downtime due to upgrades or support issues. Again, these can adversely affect your venue.

Other hard to measure costs

Taking a hard look at time and effort costs is also a useful measure. For example, you may feel that it takes too much time for your team to manually set “go-lives” for your full programme, but how do you measure it? Maybe try and time how long repetitive tasks take, versus using a system like Ticketsolve where those tasks can be automated.


We’re all for data, but sometimes it is the intangibles that are the real heroes of an ROI story. For example, maybe being able to capture richer customer data will allow you to broaden your reach to new audiences. Or maybe working with an easy to use system like Ticketsolve, improves everyone’s work experience, boosting morale. Perhaps your membership team loves the type of functionality in Ticketsolve because it just makes everything easier to do. There is no concrete number you can attach to intangible benefits, but these sorts of benefits still add to overall ROI even without hard and fast numbers. Take some time and reflect on ROI, are you getting the most from your box office?

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