Sheffield Theatres increases ticketing revenue while also lowering the price on thousands of tickets.
In autumn 2015 Sheffield Theatres was in a good place, seeing increasing revenue returns and having won UK Regional Theatre of the Year twice in consecutive years at The Stage Awards. However, with decreasing public funding, the organisation knew it needed to make dramatic changes to ensure a sustainable future.
“Public funding accounted for 24% of our income when I arrived at the organisation in 2009,” said Chief Executive Dan Bates. “By 2015 that had fallen to 13% – about a £500,000 difference – and we were aware that our Local Authority funding could disappear. We didn’t want to become too reliant on increasing ticket prices and were experimenting a lot with different pricing plans, but with so many pressures on our time, it felt like we were just tinkering rather than having a strategic approach.”
To remain sustainable in the face of declining public funding, Sheffield Theatres began a Capacity Building consultancy in May 2016 with the following priorities:
- To take a fresh look at scale-of-house and pricing strategies
- To grow membership, ticket sales, and donations
- To take a holistic view of the organisation’s management and operations
Their new approach to sales, membership, and fundraising led to:
- Secured future sustainability through optimising revenue, whilst simultaneously strengthening core values
- 10,000 ticket prices dropped alongside a 14% increase in yield
- Additional income of £323,000 achieved in 2016/17
- Growth and development in membership scheme
- 35% increase in total membership numbers (up by 614, from 1,786 in 2015)
- Fundamental changes in the way the organisation is operating
Learn how Sheffield Theatres achieved these outstanding results in this new case study.
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