San Diego’s Eventful Looks to Put Consumers in Charge, with Backward Glance at eBay

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the entire warehouse of music archives.” With Demand it, Glazier says Eventful is offering a way to democratize the process that Joni Mitchell once described as “stoking the star maker machinery behind the popular song.”

“Demand it empowers consumers to be able to influence the location and—or—content of entertainment and events,” Glazier says. “From a consumer’s perspective, you’re able to demand the content you want. And from the point of view of 100,000 musicians, filmmakers, exhibitors, politicians, authors, comedians, performers, you can use Demand it to gather data about where they should perform. In other words, it helps artists sell tickets.”

Unlike social marketing agencies that look outward, Eventful’s Lehman writes in an e-mail, “We’re tapping fans in our own community…People are waiting to hear from us so they can participate.”

For example, Lehman says Eventful’s approach helped more than 1.5 million consumers influence the distribution strategy of a motion picture for the first time after Paramount Pictures acquired rights to the 2007 independent film “Paranormal Activity.” The ’70s rock band KISS used Eventful’s Demand it feature to determine a nostalgia tour, based purely on the 50 cities with the highest consumer demand. In a second tour, KISS announced plans to play in 22 markets, and used Demand it to let fans in each market determine which local band would open the show.

“Fifteen years ago, the Internet was the information superhighway, but it was one way,” Glazier says. It’s become more and more interactive, and there’s now a generation of 18- to 30-year-olds who have grown up with the Internet. There is not just an expectation, but almost a sense of entitlement that the Web is not just there to inform and entertain them, but to help them impact the world around them.”

It is a continuation of the kind of interactivity that eBay ignited 16 years ago. As Glazier puts it, “eBay is part of my digital DNA. They had a marketing slogan, ‘Shop Victoriously.’ You weren’t just buying something. You won! And Demand it conveys a similar sense of empowerment.”

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Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at bbigelow@xconomy.com or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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