Ticket2Me has become one of only handful of Asian online ticketing platforms to survive the new coronavirus (COVID-19) global health crisis, which has crippled businesses across various industries all over the world. Despite the collapse of the live entertainment and events industries, recent innovations in both its technology and service offerings have allowed the event ticket seller to quickly pivot to adapt to the so-called New Normal brought about by the pandemic.
After the Luzon-wide lockdown was announced in early March 2020, Ticket2Me founder and CEO Darwin Mariano quickly reached out to the Kaya Natin! Movement for Good Governance and Ethical Leadership to discuss ways to aid the country’s health frontliners. The result was a fundraising campaign in coordination with the Office of Vice President Leni Robredo that raised millions to help provide personal protective equipment and food and care packages for the health workers.
Also, Ticket2Me initiated what would later become the Open House campaign. It was the event ticket seller’s online fundraising project with Artist Welfare Project, Philstage, SPIT MNL, Third World Improv and the Theater Actor’s Guild for the benefit of the performing arts community.
Ticket2Me was among the first movers to establish COVID-19 fundraising campaigns of any kind even earlier than other big businesses and more established tech companies and the only online ticketing company in the country to do so. Soon after, other organizations trusted the event ticket seller with their own respective campaigns.
As of June 2020, Ticket2Me has hosted more than 20 fundraising campaigns and raised over 18 million pesos collectively for various organizations and initiatives, including aid for displaced workers in the film and performing arts industries and the construction of emergency quarantine facilities throughout Metro Manila, Philippines.
“We needed to innovate ourselves out of the crisis,” Mariano said. “If we waited, hoping to see the COVID-19 crisis blow over quickly, we would be in worse shape now. Repurposing our platform to help raise funds for various causes and manage appointments between doctors and patients gave us a unique vantage point.”
“We saw how dramatically the market was changing real-time and what we needed to do to survive,” Mariano continued. “Our integrated ticketing and video streaming platform is the direct result of what we learned during the early days of crisis.”
The easing of the strict lockdown in June 2020 also coincided with the Philippines’ collective need to jumpstart the stunted economy. This also proved true with the entertainment industry.
Because mounting live events was still prohibited, organizers turned to online events and virtual venues to host performances in exchange for much-needed revenue. Mariano quickly steered Ticket2Me to immediately serve organizers’ online event ticketing needs with its widest array of payment options and signature brand of customer service.
While the Ticket2Me system can work with the organizer’s virtual platform of choice, piracy has always been a real threat and to address this, a proprietary pay-gated video platform was built with a multi-level security feature to deter online pirates from illegally distributing organizers’ intellectual property. This secure video platform is secure and offers virtually unlimited bandwidth for the live streaming of online performances and the hosting and streaming of recorded materials including concerts, theatrical productions and workshops, among others.
Moreover, the pandemic has presented opportunities for Ticket2Me to diversify its business offerings. In May 2020, the event ticket seller established Dok2Me, a new patient scheduling platform that facilitates online consultations with doctors of different specializations, and started preparations on the productions of its first digital web series “Boys’ Lockdown,” which will be released in September 2020.
“Content development is always a complementary strategy to accomplish our growth objectives,” Mariano said. “Pre-COVID-19, this meant producing plays and musicals to help build scale and strengthen awareness for our ticketing system.”
“Now that everything has shifted online, our digital series hopes to achieve this for our integrated ticketing and video platform,” Mariano continued. “Whatever we learn from this, we will share with our clients to help them successfully manage the transition from offline to online content.”
With more than 11,000 combined cash and online payment options throughout the Philippines, Ticket2Me is the country’s fastest growing ticketing and event technology company. Event organizers, venues, and ticket buyers may access the platform and buy tickets via www.ticket2me.net and the Ticket2Me iOS and Android apps.