Viagogo partners two major AFL teams to support launch

Viagogo, the ticketing site launching in Australia this week to take on eBay and Gumtree, is partnering with Collingwood and Richmond AFL teams as part of its marketing strategy to build awareness and trust in the marketplace.

The site promises buyers won't be scammed with fake tickets. As a secondary ticketing service that allows consumers to resell unwanted tickets back to the public, it does not operate in exactly the same space as primary ticket sellers such as Ticketek and claims it is “inventing a new category”.

The pillars of its marketing and brand strategy in the Australian market are building awareness of its services and trust in the legitimacy of its offer. Viagogo claims more than half a million Australians have been scammed when buying tickets online citing eBay and Gumtree in particular as trouble spots.

One of its key marketing messages is the 100% guarantee it offers buyers that use the platform to purchase resold event tickets. If a customer finds they do end up being scammed and paid for a fake ticket that doesn't get them access to the live event, Viagogo commits to sourcing a ticket for that event any way they can.

Chief executive Eric Baker told AdNews: “The first thing for us when we're thinking about marketing is that we're filling a need that people have – they're looking for us in a sense. If I was coming here to launch a new cola or coffee, people would need me to explain why it's better than what already exists in the market. Here what we're doing is inventing a category – we're not inventing a need but introducing a solution. That's a good advantage. When you have option where you might lose your money and not get the ticket or one where it's 100% secure no one in their right mind would choose the other option.”

The partnerships with Richmond and Collingwood lend legitimacy to the launch, according to Baker, as well as marketing opportunities to target users using data and forge ongoing relationships, promotions and incentives as well as competitions and exclusive experiences.

Baker says: “Our partnerships are a big element of [building trust and awareness]. Sports fans know the AFL and these clubs and through that they will know Viagogo. Through that sports fans will see that these clubs are endorsing the service to their fans – and even if you’re not a Collingwood fan you know that iconic clubs like that won't endorse a service that doesn’t work.”

The ticketing platform, which also operates globally and claims to be the world's largest, has taken a similar approach to launching elsewhere. In the UK it partnered with English Premier League teams Chelsea and Manchester City, in Germany with Bayern Munich and with Paris Saint-Germain in France.

It has also partnered with live music events including British summer music festival the Isle of Wight and Madonna's recent European tour and plans to partner with music events in Australia.

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