Ticketmaster: Capitalizing on OPEX, Performance, Analytics and Data to Deliver Insights, All in the Cloud

By | November 2, 2016

This is a story about the cloud.  You’ve heard of the cloud right? If you’re in data and analytics, that’s what people are talking about these days.  But who’s doing it right? How are they using it?  How difficult or easy was the transition from on-prem to the cloud?   We give you…..Ticketmaster.screen-shot-2016-10-27-at-8-24-30-am

“Striving to put fans first,” Ticketmaster has been getting people into concerts, sporting events, and shows since it was started in a college dorm room in 1976.  Getting tickets has changed a bit in four decades and now Ticketmaster sells hundreds of millions of tickets every year.

“We are fans, too; ‘we get you in.’ That’s what we do. We enable that experience; that once-in-a-lifetime experience of being able to go see your favorite band, or your favorite Broadway show, or your favorite sports team.  We are the beginning, middle and end of that experience!” – Shawn Moon

Ticketmaster considered multiple factors before going to the cloud including flexibility, performance, and the ability to use OPEX dollars over CAPEX, to meet its company mandate to be in the cloud by 2017. Ticketmaster has a business model that requires the ability to spin resources up and down, quickly. Think Beyoncé tour going on sale at 10AM on a Saturday.  Lots of need. The next Tuesday and the rest of the week; not so much.

“The analytics piece is the way that we’re able to deliver the value that is locked up in the data. These days, you just can’t afford to have a big and long process of discovering something. You need a platform that is responsive, fast, grows as your data grows and as your demands grow.  The questions that the teams will be asking tomorrow can still be answered on the platform you have today. That’s important, because we don’t have time to go out and re-platform just to answer another question that might come up in six months.”

Ticketmaster wanted to get out of the day to day work of managing an environment.

“By moving into a cloud platform we have taken ourselves out of the business of managing that hardware, of upgrading that hardware, of securing that hardware, and put it into hands of a group that’s dedicated to those operations. That frees up our resources to be able to work on more value-add tasks.” – Shawn Moon

Ticketmaster made the move to the cloud in only ten weeks and most of Ticketmaster’s users don’t even know they made the move.  Except for the fact that, in many cases, performance is better.

“If you’re looking for drama, there’s not a lot of drama there. You know why there’s not a lot of drama there? It’s largely to do with the fact that, for six years, Teradata’s become a very trusted partner of Ticketmaster. I knew when we were talking about moving to the cloud, I knew and trusted that Teradata was going to make sure that the project was successful. I didn’t have to convince anybody in my organization of that. They’d seen the partnership that’s happened and developed over the years, with Teradata, and the way that they’ve come to the table when we’ve needed their assistance, and really come through for us.” Shawn Moon

Ticketmaster users include finance, marketing, and accounting.  But itscreen-shot-2016-10-27-at-8-25-27-am extends further than that to the venues and promoters that are putting on these shows. If sales are sagging for a certain concert or show, teams can quickly pivot and personalize offers in order to up attendance.  But, Ticketmaster goes even further, using the data and analytics to help fans enhance their experience.

“In data-warehousing, it doesn’t sound like something that’s really going to get you out there and help the fan experience. But, we’re able to take a look at the way fans interact with our platform. What do they like to see? Where do they like to go? Then we can help them discover new and exciting events and attractions, that they would like to see.”

That, in a nutshell, is your cloud story.  Congratulations to Ticketmaster on your cloud success!


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