On Wednesday of last week, a bunch of outlets blogged about the Nats offering dollar tickets (and dollar concessions) for Monday’s game against the Pirates.
By Thursday afternoon, following what the team described as “an overwhelming response,” those tickets were sold out.
“It’s an opportunity to create some buzz and get people talking,” Nats COO Andy Feffer told me. “I think everyone was excited by the response. I knew we would sell them out, but the speed with which the news traveled was exciting.”
Feffer declined to tell me how many dollar tickets the team had made available, but said it was in the low four figures. A similar number of two dollar tickets were made available for Tuesday afternoon’s Pirates game; those have not sold out as of this writing.
And, of course, the team offers 400 seats for $5 at every home game, starting two-and-a-half hours before the first pitch. The team has had at least one dollar-ticket promotion in the past — the month that Stephen Strasburg signed — but Feffer did not know of any previous $2 events, or $1 concession specials.
“They key thing is it’s an opportunity to get fans in the ballpark who have never been,” Feffer said. “By developing the buzz in the marketplace, you’re reaching a group of people, the casual fan, who might have thought about coming to Nationals Park and hasn’t done it yet. You’ve triggered a response now for them to come to the ballpark and see just how great a venue it is....
“Obviously we want to sell more tickets, and on a Monday and Tuesday night, and the Pittsburgh Pirates are in town....But it doesn’t matter who’s in town. Monday and Tuesday don’t tend to be your biggest nights. It’s an opportunity to create some buzz and get people talking.”
(Side note: But Pittsburgh fans are the most passionate and committed in the world!!!! And they follow their teams through thick and thin!!!! And they’re so much more diehard than D.C. fans that virtually every Pittsburgh-D.C. affair becomes a Steel City convention!!!!!! The Nats should have made this Thousand Dollar Monday and the Pittsburghers would have still packed the place!!!!!)
Anyhow, I asked Feffer if we could expect more mega-bargain promotions from the Nats
“These are things that we’ll test and we’ll see,” he said. “Maybe not the same exact offer, but I think it’s very important from a strategic standpoint that we offer promotional nights that engage the fans in different ways. We should do that throughout the season in different ways, with different partners and different ideas. We’ll get feedback from our fans — I assume they’ll love it – but what did you like about it, what would you like to see? That information helps us do more of this type of thing.”