How defensible is Eventbrite’s business?

Now being accidentally in the events business, I think it’s pretty darn defensible for paid events at least.

There are many next generation tools, many of which are much slicker today. I much prefer using Splash for smaller events, it’s cooler, and you get a slick CMS with it.

And as you get bigger, Eventbrite doesn’t perfectly integrate with a lot of other systems, which is a huge pain. It’s a pretty bad way to truly manage a larger event. It’s not an events ERP, which would be nice if it was.

And there are parts of Eventbrite where the UI/UX is so old I want to cry. And I bang my head trying to find features, which seem to have been added haphazard over a decade.

But … when you are collecting real money, you want it to work.

We played with other systems. We couldn’t trust them. Or they confused our customers / users / attendees. We could trust Eventbrite to manage at least the ticketing and ticket registration side of a $3.8m event last year, and a $6m event this year. And importantly — everyone already knows how to buy a ticket on Eventbrite. There is zero learning curve for attendees.

Proven brands matter. For a reason. They are proxies for trust.

The interesting intersection is probably tools like DoubleDutch, which is becoming a standard mobile app for a cohort of next-generation events. They are not competitors today. But if DoubleDutch reproduced Eventbrite’s full technology stack, but in a mobile-first format, that might be a reason to switch.

SaaStr Annual 2017

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Published on May 6, 2016

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