Passbook is helping Major League Baseball transition away from traditional physical tickets to digital ones. In in an initial test run with four teams in the final two weeks of the season, Passbook was used for 12% of electronic tickets, which account for over two thirds of all ticket sales. While the convenience of Passbook has delighted fans, it also seems to have struck a chord with the league as a whole. Though Passbook itself doesn’t hold personal information, the apps that feed Passbook, in this case, the MLB iPhone app, do. Using the app, teams and parks can more specifically target advertising, or make specific offers to loyal fans. MLB Advance Media CEO Bob Bowman told MarketWatch:
“If you know someone goes to the Brewers game every time the Cardinals are in town, they may be as much a Cardinals fan as a Brewers fan – and you want to send them different types of communications,” Bowman says. “Or, if you have a fan who always sits in the third tier, but goes to 20 home games – you can upgrade his ticket on the 21st game to right behind home plate.” In other words, expect more emails, offers, and advertising.
Passbook has its share of problems, with a limited selection of apps that utilize it, or, in some areas, a lack of locations that accept electronic tickets and passes. However, with Passbook being used for about 8% of all MLB tickets just three weeks after launch, perhaps others will finally take a look and give Passbook and electronic ticketing a try. If users show enough demand, it might happen sooner, rather than later.
Have you used Passbook to go to one of these games? Are you a regular Passbook user, and if so, how has your overall experience been so far?