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Success Story

Transforming the Broadway Experience for a New Generation of Fans

New Ticketing Platform and Data Infrastructure Brings Deeper Audience Insights

The Nederlander Organization has been a family-owned live entertainment company since 1912, when David T. Nederlander purchased the Detroit Opera House. Fast-forward a century, and the organization owns and operates nine theatres in New York and dozens more around the globe, bringing Broadway productions to millions of fans.

In 2011, to stay connected with their Broadway audiences online, Nederlander formed the content platform Broadway Direct to promote its shows with articles, videos, and more. Now, they’ve set their sites on disrupting how Broadway tickets are bought and sold.

After more than twenty years using Ticketmaster as their primary ticketing provider, Nederlander acquired a platform called TixTrack and launched their own ticketing service on Broadway Direct. By moving away from Ticketmaster and putting customer data into the hands of the productions themselves, the company is transforming the industry and creating better, more personalized experiences for Broadway patrons.

broadway direct homepage image

After a two-year shutdown during the pandemic, Broadway faced an uphill climb to rebuild its digital infrastructure and bring audiences back into theatres. Over the last few years, the traditional Broadway demographic has also been shifting to a younger, more cost-conscious, and digitally savvy audience. 

The company faced the added challenge of driving ticket sales onto their own platform. But they knew if they could pull it off, the potential benefits for both their productions and customers would be huge.

Act I: Bringing Data Strategy into the Spotlight

Historically, Broadway has not been a very data-driven industry, and most business decisions were made by gut feeling or a “this is the way we’ve always done it” mentality. There wasn’t much incentive or pressure for the industry to revolutionize. Broadway Direct saw an opportunity to change that narrative.

They knew that understanding the factors that drive purchase decisions is key to filling seats and delivering better insights to their productions. But to get there, they needed to establish a modern data architecture with actionability and predictability. They partnered with Atrium to help them build a scalable data strategy and lay the groundwork to become a more tech-enabled, data-driven organization.

Data collected by venues (e.g., patron demographics, mobile interactions, and customer feedback) is extremely valuable to partners inside and outside of Broadway. Unfortunately, this data has historically been dispersed across a number of fragmented platforms. Atrium used Snowflake and Tableau to bring all those disparate insights together to create the visibility and actionable insights that Broadway Direct and their productions needed.

The company chose to leverage Snowflake’s Data Cloud to automate data processing and platform integrations, which Ticketmaster had previously been managing for ticketing transactions. To capture the data from these transactions and create actionable views, the Atrium team built two Tableau dashboards that afforded a more immersive and expansive analytics experience than the previous Ticketmaster analytics: one called Traffic Trends, which focuses on website buying behavior, and a Demographics dashboard, which shows information about the people buying tickets.

With Snowflake, the Broadway productions have more visibility into their own data than they ever had when using Ticketmaster, and the Tableau insights allow them to do more targeted marketing for their shows.

Act II: Showstopping Audience Experiences

As the first Broadway owner with access to data from both the theatre (e.g., marketing data, etc.) and the ticketing system (e.g., seat map, purchaser data, etc.), Broadway Direct now has a leg up in the industry and the ability to better personalize the ticket-buying experience for customers.

With the positive business outcomes they experienced right out of the gate, they decided to double down on their investment in Snowflake and create a long-term data strategy with further expansion. One such expansion included integrating Salesforce and Snowflake, which resulted in a significant decrease in their Salesforce data storage and increased cost savings.

From the moment the curtain raised on our partnership, the Atrium project team understood that this was more than just a data project. It was a chance to help revolutionize a beloved industry. Now with a comprehensive ticketing behavior view — a first-of-its-kind insight spanning a century of history — Broadway Direct can focus on reinvigorating audience engagement and ensuring the long-term vitality of their iconic industry. 

With a holistic, 360 view of the customer and improved ticketing efficiency, Broadway Direct is able to provide a more personalized, omnichannel experience to fans from all different backgrounds.

Act III: The Innovation Must Go On 

Broadway Direct’s mission is to promote the success of Broadway as a whole, not just their own productions and theatres. They realize that bringing (data) science to the arts can help preserve it for generations to come.

At the core of our work with Broadway Direct lies the establishment of a robust data architecture, paving the way for future AI-driven initiatives like concierge services and dynamic ticket pricing. The data we’ve been able to unify and harmonize will provide a real-time, predictive view of Broadway audiences that has never been available to the industry before.

By unveiling previously unknown insights like historical ticket purchase data and buyer behavior, this work has forged a data-driven roadmap, charting the course for Broadway’s future. Using data and AI technologies to reduce prices and fees for patrons will make it easier for anyone to buy tickets, so all can enjoy high-quality live entertainment.

Understanding the demographics and purchasing patterns of Broadway audiences will also allow productions to make more informed decisions about which shows to book — and even what to produce. Broadway Direct is paving the way for productions across the world to leverage data for the sustained success of this legacy art form.

About Broadway Direct

Broadway Direct, established in 2011 by The Nederlander Organization, which owns 9 Broadway venues globally, is dedicated to helping patrons around the country stay connected to every show on Broadway. From navigating ticketing to in-theatre experience to staying connected to Broadway after the curtain comes down, their mission is to make the Broadway experience the best it can be.

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