As the world’s biggest ticket search engine, New York based SeatGeek has built the mother lode of data about live events, everything from sports to concerts. Today it’s announcing the launch of a SeatGeek developer platform that will allow anyone to tap into that information and, more importantly, collect affiliate fees for any ticket sales that happen through their website or app.
“We’re not some flighty Web 2.0 music discovery platform,” SeatGeek co-founder Jack Groetzinger told VentureBeat by phone. “We’ve gotten big because ticket sales is a powerful business, and now we’re offering to split that revenue stream 50/50 with developers who build on top of our data.”
Groetzinger offers this example of how the platform might work. A popular music blogger in Seattle writes about undiscovered local talent and the best big name shows that are touring through town. With the SeatGeek API, that blogger could start showing their audience when and where the best time is to buy for upcoming concerts connected to these posts. For current partners, which include the massive concert site Pollstar and the local calendar startup Gtrot, that has worked out to $170 for every one thousand referrals.
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A mobile check-in app could also tap into SeatGeek’s data, which includes the geo-location info about each live event. A check-in at a restaurant in a new city on a Saturday night could prompt a simple follow up with links to live concerts and sports happening nearby that night.
The Y-Combinator startup Songkick offers a similar API for anyone interested in concert tickets. But it doesn’t do sports, predictive pricing, and most importantly, says Groetzinger, “You have to have a certain level of traffic before Songkick will work with you on an affiliate basis. We don’t have any such threshold.”
Right now the SeatGeek platform is wide open, there are no API keys and developers can store the data locally if they choose. In the future it may begin to include taste graph data from Columbus, its event recommendation platform, which learns users favourite bands and teams and suggests good deals. If and when that data is shared, says Groetzinger, it will be completely anonymous.
“We’ve built the company with the help of big content partners like Yahoo and Hearst,” Groetzinger said. “Now we’re excited to let the little guy start making money by working with our data.”