Knitting Factory, ShopText Deliver Concert Tickets Via Text

Live music fans in New York City and Los Angeles can now "text-to-purchase" tickets to concerts at The Knitting Factory, thanks to parent company Knitting Factory Entertainment (KFE)'s partnership with mobile commerce firm ShopText.

Concertgoers first create an account using their mobile phone, an email address and credit card--and ShopText gives them a unique PIN for future transactions. Once they spot a Knitting Factory concert listing, fans purchase tickets by texting the event's unique show code to the number 467467 (GO-SHOP), using the PIN for payment.

While users can go online to set up the account, both companies were adamant about making the registration process simple and accessible via mobile phone. "The consumer never has to go online," said Steve Roberts, CEO, ShopText. "We built our mobile commerce platform under the belief that if you can text, you can shop."

KFE said it partnered with New York-based ShopText because the mobile commerce and promotions company had implemented successful print and OOH-based text messaging campaigns for brands such as Johnson and Johnson and Lucky magazine.

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"There are a lot of very ambitious strategies for delivering mobile commerce," said Jared Hoffman, CEO, KFE. "But given the current limits to mobile Web technology in the U.S., it had to be a simple solution that everyone could use right now, and ShopText provided that."

While KFE touts this as the "first ticketing-by-text opportunity" for concertgoers in America, ShopText has implemented a similar program for the Broadway musical "Grey Gardens." Both companies point to future implications of this specific mobile technology for both the entertainment and marketing industries.

ShopText, for example, is seeking to broaden text-to-purchase campaigns globally for clients such as P&G, while KFE sees the mobile commerce platform as a way to both foster the concertgoer community and make it accessible to marketers. The company plans to roll out the text-to-purchase option for its venues in Idaho and Washington by the end of third-quarter 2007. Hoffman adds: "We have a very desirable consumer demographic, and using the ShopText platform can help drive a response-based marketing program very effectively."

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