Posted: 10:47 am Thursday, February 27th, 2014

Thoughts on Tech season-ticket strategy 

By Ken Sugiura

Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Georgia Tech’s six-game package sells for less than what it would cost to buy all six games individually. (Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)

Georgia Tech unveiled its season-ticket package Tuesday, offering a variety of benefits to add value to its plan for the six-game home schedule.

The base price is $245. It was $270 last year, which was a seven-game home schedule including the Georgia game and $249 in 2012 (seven games without Georgia, Virginia Tech or Clemson). Tech Fund contribution levels increased in five sections (Tech Terrace, CL1 & CL4, Sections 105 and 107, Section 128 and Sections 129/203U/206U/223U/227U) by an average of 6.6 percent and was reduced by 25 percent in one (Sections 223L and 227L). There’s more information here on Tech’s website.

At any rate, a few things jump out at me. One is that the package will sell at a slight discount over the face value of the tickets, which I think is smart. Like just about every athletic department and professional sports front office in the country, Tech is fighting the battle against HDTV and the flexibility of single-game tickets to retain (or attract) season-ticket holders, and just ticket buyers, period.

In a way, ticket re-sale websites like Stubhub have made the face value of a ticket maybe not meaningless, but not as meaningful as it once was. Further, Tech has also offered discounted single-game tickets and packages in the past, which I can see would be frustrating for season-ticket holders as they pay full freight for a service that is later sold for less. Selling the total six-game package for less than what it would cost to buy all six individually, though only about by 10 percent, makes sense to me.

The ticket office also came up with a clever incentive, two movie screenings to be held at Bobby Dodd Stadium in July for season-ticket holders only. Fans will be allowed to watch the movies – “Muppets Most Wanted” and “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” if you’re wondering – on the field. It’s a unique experience and, perhaps best of all for the athletic department, the cost is fairly negligible.

As was the case last year, season-ticket holders will also be invited to attend a preseason scrimmage in August. There’s also gifts and drawings for various prizes for fans who renew by various cutoff dates, like club passes, pregame sideline passes and the chance to throw out the first pitch at a Tech baseball game.

It’s a tough battle the ticket office is having to fight, for the reasons stated above and others. Besides the Clemson game, the schedule doesn’t have a lot of sizzle to it. Further, I’d guess expectations will be fairly low and, I get the feeling that Tech football fever is not quite a raging epidemic. I imagine the ticket sales folks would not have to be convinced to give up a movie night at Bobby Dodd in exchange for wins over Georgia and Ole Miss last season. Obviously, fun and innovative packages will help sell tickets, but nothing like a highly successful team will.

But the department has built on its efforts to add value to the season ticket, which obviously is a smart and necessary strategy. As a hypothetical ticket buyer, I’m not sure there’s one thing in the package that would make me say, “Whoa, I was on the fence, but I’ve got to buy season tickets now,” but there are some incentives I think I’d like. What do you think?

139 comments
Born2Buzz
Born2Buzz

What a great slate of games.  I’m super excited about seeing Wofford and Ga Southern and how we stack up against such traditional football powers.  Seriously...


CPJ better have a winner this year or he'll be gone, not so much because of the wins and losses but for the dwindling season ticket sales.

I posted on an earlier blog about the past season and how it was such a crappy year for attending games.  Either bad weather, bad opponents or bad losses was the name of the game.  I had trouble getting anyone to attend games with me.  However, and GTBob this is for you, I NEVER sold my tickets to opposing fans.


I had 8 tickets in my group 2 years ago. I was down to 6 last year.  I'm guessing I'm dropping down to 4 this year.  I shouldn't have to plead with friends and family to buy a ticket.  That's a bad trend that MBob has got to notice.

JacketMan
JacketMan

My biggest issue is that some people who do buy season tickets end up scalping them to fans from opposing teams and they wind up smack dab in the middle of the rest of us who paid $500+ per ticket for the season. Sometimes these visiting fans end up being drunk and obnoxious, making our experience extremely unenjoyable.

So, to be blunt, I'd rather people NOT buy season tickets if they plan on scalping them, or giving them away, to fans of other teams. If you don't want to go to the game, eat the tickets, or give them away to other Tech fans; anything other than putting other Tech season-ticket-holders into a position we woon't be able to enjoy our tickets due to your selfishness

juvenal
juvenal

first off, i'm going to get season tix-no coach will drive me away-even tho' american football is not my favorite $port to watch, & i won't let my kid play it.......but i do have 2 more questions.......why do we not signal plays in except in the last 2 minutes, &, why if we do use shotgun some, why do we always run the formation we initially set up in, when we can move everybody around till the last 10 seconds(when we do often put a man in motion)?

LongBeachJacket
LongBeachJacket

It's entertainment.  If you like college football and enjoy a game day experience, then buy tickets and go.

Miami is a pretty good team with more Nat Championships since 1984 than anyone else...they will continue to improve. Duke was 10-3 last yr. Clemson is Clemson. First time visit for GA Southern to Tech. That in and of itself is interesting.  If I lived in ATL, $249 woudn't at all be a bad deal.  I like college football in general.  Support the team and go....or don't go.... either way....support the team!!!

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

I wish Tech nothing but the best.

It's a shame GT isn't a Nat'l Program.

Paul Johnson is solely responsible.

He's overpaid...........and overwhelmed. :(

The ACC isn't very good. Tech's a pretty bad 2 yrs ago & playing in the Conference Title game.

His Tenure has been a major letdown.

drydirtroad
drydirtroad

I don't really dig this comment format b/c my new icon did not register, it only registers with the old format; Ken, plz accept my new icon, thanks 

ricojack
ricojack

if Ga Tech had beaten VT. the entire season may have been different.  3 and Oh with wins over UNC and Duke going into the Thursday night home game vs. a team we have not beaten since 2009, only to not even show up.  This photo is not the truth of that game.  That night it was packed with 99.99% people there pulling for GT with hope the 2013 season was going to be different.  Even the 5 yard line seats were full of businessmen who arrived straight from work still in their dress shirts and ties.  Not necessarily GT grads but GT fans when the football team is winning.  Toughest loss to me of the entire year. Total meltdown.

Birmingham__Jacket
Birmingham__Jacket

I don't discriminate against selling or giving my tickets to opposing fans. Anything is better than empty seats. In my multiple experiences at home games, my family is more often bothered by drunk GT fans who have little consideration for profanity around children. I don't mind being around opposing fans as long as they are considerate.

Birmingham__Jacket
Birmingham__Jacket

@JacketMan

The opposing fans around you wouldn't be obnoxious if our football team was good, and was beating them up.

GTBob
GTBob

@JacketMan  While I agree with you on most games, for the UGA game my ticket usually gets sold. If I can't find a Tech fan to take them then they go on stubhub or to a UGA friend who I think may not be too obnoxious. The problem is that I know everyone around me is going to sell their tickets and I am going to be surrounded by UGA fans if I go. It's not fun at all. I can eat the cost of most games but when I can get top dollar for UGA tickets i'm not going to turn it down. It's a bad situation that i'm not sure can be fixed.

juvenal
juvenal

so where do we find Tech fans to give them to?

GTQBdefender
GTQBdefender

@LongBeachJacket

Easy 4 u to say out on the west coast. Those $249 seats have a lousy view. To get 20 yard line West Stands costs $550 each with $50 to $100 other expenses for each game. If u cannot win the big games, it is not much fun. I thought I might miss out in 2013. I didn't. I saved myself some money and frustration.

Birmingham__Jacket
Birmingham__Jacket

No. This is not five-year-old T-ball where you turn the scoreboard often don't keep score and play the game just for fun. College football is competitive. You played a game to win.

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

@BigCrimson75 The ACC took home the crystal this year didnt they? 2-0 in BCS games this year, 0-2 SEC in BCS this year. Great Point.

GTBob
GTBob

Who was responsible for GT not being a strong national program before CPJ got here?

gt-40
gt-40

@BigCrimson75


BC-75 I think you are sincere in your comments, and your hope for a better Tech future,  I am trying to stay positive, but I too get discouraged if I let myself get caught up in the emotion of it all. Football is a game of emotion, and that is one of things that bugs me the most, when I see how flat and totally out of it we were on that Thursday night last year against VT..... I try not to think about it anymore..........( Thanks for bringing it up,, just kidding..)

Birmingham__Jacket
Birmingham__Jacket

@BigCrimson75  


"It's a shame GT isn't a Natl' Program":  It is.  We just aren't ranked in the top 20 in CFB.

"Paul Johnson is solely responsible.":  False.  Not at all.  He works for people that couldn't care less about football, and to some extent at least, his hands are tied.

He's overpaid:  VERY, VERY, VERY true!  But so are the top 50 paid coaches in the country.

The ACC isn't very good:  That's an understatement.

His tenure has been a major letdown:  I wouldn't say "major".  But certainly disappointing since he won the ACC title in 09.

GTBob
GTBob

The students already get tickets for free and they can't even fill up the student section.

gt-40
gt-40

@ricojack


I concur, that may have been the strangest, most surreal night, and game that I have seen in many a moon. We couldn't play dead in a cowboy movie that night, in HD with the whole world watching..

BleedingGold
BleedingGold

@ricojack The photo at the top of the page is from the UGA game this year.  Hence all the red. We even had a whiteout the night of the VT game.  Wouldn't even call that game a meltdown.  We just got shut down.

GTLee
GTLee

Bham,

Go ask Florida fans about uga fans. You really are a moron.

Born2Buzz
Born2Buzz

@GTBob @JacketMan  GTBob, where are you sitting that every seat around you gets sold to UGA fans?  I agree with you that that sux but you are just like the rest of them.  The people next to your seats are probably saying the same thing about you.

I for one can't imagine not going to the biggest game of the year, especially when I've suffered through the whole season to get there.

GTBob
GTBob

@DON1938 That would be highly preferable to being surrounded by opposing fans.

GTQBdefender
GTQBdefender

@juvenal If you are a smart coach, u change your offense to fit your talented passer and he fills up the stadium. No of course Johnson is not going to do that. FSU is back and Miami soon will be - not that we could beat them when they were average - so the door has closed on GT winning the ACC in football.

For all the times Johnson has gone for it on 4th on our side of the 50 and not made it, he fails to go for it on 4th and one against Miami in 2012 up 36-29 with a little over 2 minutes left when one yard ends the game and all u have to lose is a possible OT. I went to this game having season tickets in spite of my mom's death 3 days earlier. That was one of the few times it made sense to go for it - weighing the risks - on 4th on our side of the fifty. Tevin got the blame for this loss failing at the one yard line in OT but I put the loss on Johnson confused 4th down strategies and his awful hire of Al Groh. Only the firing of Groh mid-season saved us from disaster. I also went to the ACCCG that year. Where were u?

Jmonty
Jmonty

"You play to win the game"  Herm Edwards... 2006

GTQBdefender
GTQBdefender

@GTBob

Wouldn't it have been cheaper to offer Bobby Ross triple what he made prior to 1990 and not lose him? I doubt he got a pay raise after the 1990 NC season but do not know it for a fact. I would hire the village idiot before I would hire a long time assistant at Uga named Bill Lewis. So I am not a Homer Rice fan though his buddies usually get angry when I knock him.

Birmingham__Jacket
Birmingham__Jacket

@GTBob  

Your point is a good one.  We have enjoyed BRIEF and occasional success on The Gridiron.  But otherwise, it has been average, at best past 30+ years.

However, there are some non-traditional institutions that through dedicated efforts have recently stepped up their games--- Stanford, Baylor and Vandy.

It CAN be done.  Although, I would never expect another NC in my lifetime, regardless.

But Georgia Tech needs to address, identify and solve SOME of the traditional problems that are holding us back.

To me, the most obvious is nixing Option Football.  It would allow us to recruit A FEW better players, that otherwise currently give us no consideration, whatsoever.



BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

The discouraging aspect of Sports on the Flats is currently the BB team is in far worse shape than the FB Team....even after yrs of systematic damage inflicted by CPJ.

BG's Program is in shambles!

I've seen this act before.....it's called Bama BB under Anthony Grant. :(

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

I woulda felt worse after watching that Clemson game this yr! :(

Out-Classed doesn't even begin....

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

2013 was PJs worst.

At least he had Tevin to blame in '12.

Last yr with Vad was ugly!

FreddieBlassie
FreddieBlassie

@GTBob  You wonder why the student section is not full? Look where these students lived before coming to GT. Somehow, Tech thinks it is better to admit an Arab or a Chinaman from New Mexico than a Georgia high schooler with an A+ average and 1500 college board score. Having students from all fifty states is nothing to brag about when Georgia residents and their families have supported education in Georgia for decades. Admit qualified Georgia students first unless of course the Arab and the Chinaman can run a 4.25 second 40 and bench 600 lbs.

Paul Johnson is a great coach and will win 9 games this year. You pencil necks are welcome back on the band wagon. BiggieClemson75 will have to go someplace when Saban takes the toothless rednecks to the toilet. You know he is scared when he gets outcoached and tries to change the rules.

War Eagle! To Hell with Georgia!!

BigCrimson75
BigCrimson75

Coaches like Bud Foster -- They eat Paul Johnson for lunch.

Birmingham__Jacket
Birmingham__Jacket

I've been to GA/FLA when Florida was kicking their butts. UGA fans are no different than any other fans. When they are getting dominated on the field, they hush or leave the game.

GTBob
GTBob

@MikeBanning Sorry, I don't apologize for it at all. I can either sell my tickets for a good price and watch the game at home with family who is in town for the holidays (or go out of town) or I can march to the game, sit in my regular seats with UGA fans pressed up against me from every side and watch a game that I don't particularly enjoy all that much. It's not a hard decision for me. Believe me, I try to find Tech fans to take them first, usually for less than face value, but if I can't I am not that upset to let a UGA fan or a random stubhub take them from me for well over face value.

GTBob
GTBob

@Radar123 We don't have the money to triple a coaches salary and from most accounts Ross was pretty frustrated here by the time he left. I am also not sure that kind of reactionary spending is good for us. We did that with Paul Hewitt and it was disastrous. We sort of did it again with CPJ and now everyone hates him. Im not saying we shouldn't reward good performance but we should probably be a little more cautious going forward.

GTQBdefender
GTQBdefender

@BigCrimson75

I disagree.

The Atlanta Hawks were playing good basketball and now have lost 11 of 12 after injuries hit.

Robert Carter Jr. is Tech's best player and the one they could most afford to lose.

I do not like how Gregory substitutes but if Carter hits his treys, Bolden, MGH and the rest might too.

Gregory's problem is his schedule has gotten tougher with the additions to the conference while Johnson has managed to water his down enough to get 8 wins with a decent team.

There was a window open for Tech in ACC football while FSU, Miami and Clemson were average.

That window is now closed.

I get tired of hoping for other teams to defeat the ones I am pissed at, since we can't.

gt-40
gt-40

@IhateCPJ @gt-40

You may be sincere in thinking that, but just ask around, I have done very little, if any defending of CPJ, I am a big, dare I say, huge TECH fan, I am just giving him one more year to see if he can show improvement... I will say I pull for him because he is the coach of my team, and I will leave it at that.

gt-40
gt-40

@IhateCPJ @gt-40


I think you are confused, find that and show me, I am for the free flow of ideas and opinions, I don't remember criticizing anyone for their views. The only ones I get on are the jawja crowd, I have very little use for them..

Gr8_2B_aFuzzyB
Gr8_2B_aFuzzyB

You make good points BG but unfortunately this coach is too stubborn to think as rationally as you.

JacketMan
JacketMan

Bud Foster is a great Defensive Coordinator; when he has time, he can scheme for just about anyone; ask Nick Saben from last season. Their offense was about as effective as ours has been, but their defense and special teams put up points for the Tide making the score look a lot more lopsided than it actually was.

Regarding how our offense plays against VA Tech's defense, last sseason, we were playing with a make-shift offensive line, a second team set of wide receivers who didn't know how to block, and a first year starting QB who didn't want to be here, yet they were driving for a tying TD at the end of the game meaning the offense moved the ball during the game, but just didn't score. Unfortunately, they also turned the ball over, meaning it stopped offensive drives and put the Tech defense in harms way at the worst possible time in more than one occassion, which ultimately led to the Hokie win.

Birmingham__Jacket
Birmingham__Jacket

@BleedingGold @gt-40  

That is true.  Bud Foster has done what few teams have done to limit our offense.  

What I saw in the VT games was simple.  Our OL got absolutely dominated.  They were so rattled, they couldn't even stay set on the snap count.

VT stacked the box.  Their tackles, DEs and LBs were behind the line of scrimmage less than 1 second after the ball was snapped... 

There was zero time to pass from even the shotgun, and even less time to construct play action.

At some point, the OL coach should have told them to hold, and hope the refs didn't call it.

BleedingGold
BleedingGold

@gt-40  


We've had arguable more talent than VT every year besides 2010.  A game we also should have won.  Bud Foster knows how to stop the triple option.  Until CPJ devises a game plan specifically for VT, we'll continue to struggle on offense.  More play action passes would make Foster respect the pass, thus opening the run game. 


Vad was 7-21 against VT this past season.  Most of the passes were on obvious passing situations and they were mostly drop back passes without any deceit.  Also wouldn't help to throw some different packages at them.

gt-40
gt-40

@BigCrimson75


I saw the beat down from Clemson coming, too much talent, VT on the other hand, was not that good, we should have won the VT game, at least on paper... to me VT stunk on ice last year... we should have thumped um..

Birmingham__Jacket
Birmingham__Jacket

@BigCrimson75  

Part of Vad's problems were 1) mediocre OL play  2)  Opponents have grown wise on how to defend PJs triple option  3)  A lack of understanding and/or ability and/or commitment to run the option  4) lack of a go-to ball carrier and 5) lack of size and muscle to protect the football and punish tacklers

You need a big, fast QB like Nesbitt or Logan Thomas to run the option successfully.  Nesbitt drove defenders backwards and was superb at getting 3-4 yards when he needed to.  JT won't fare much better than Washington or Lee, I'm afraid.

GTBob
GTBob

@FreddieBlassie @GTBob  That isn't much of an excuse for not filling up a relatively small student section. Over 70% of our undergraduate students are either black or white and over 50% come from the state of Georgia. Less than 7% are international students. The real problem is that students are caring less and less about football everywhere. Not just at GT. Alabama, UGA, and pretty much everyone else has had similar problems. Also, the term Chinaman is an offensive term. Try not to use it.

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

@BigCrimson75 Kind of what Malzahn did to Nick.That HUNH seems to be working on your Tide boys.