Is there demand for a Take That concert tour in South America?
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Is there demand for a Take That concert tour in South America?

28 January 2015 10 Comments
This blog belongs to Radio Creme Brulee – an internet music radio station that broadcasts globally.

take-that-2_2253731bIt appears that the now “Manchester Trio” Take That has triumphed yet again after the departure of band-member Jason Orange with a #1 single titled “These Days” and a #1 album titled “III“. They are getting geared to go on tour. When this happens, fans outside the band’s core territories tend to hope that a concert tour from their favorite band will come to where they are. This post has been inspired by the Twitter-based #TTtoArgentina campaign that is being run by the Argentinian fans of one of Britain’s greatest pop bands – Take That. The campaign is an endeavor to persuade Take That to perform a live concert in Argentina. Argentinian fans insist that there is a LOT of love for Take That in their country but is there sufficient demand to make a Take That concert in Argentina a profitable promotional activity? To address this question, it is imperative to make a data-driven quantification of the demand for such a show in Argentina.  After all, the music industry is still very much a business and the bottom line does matter. For those readers that read  our post about whether there is demand for a Take That tour in the US, the train of thought that we are using in this post is similar to that of this post titled “Is there demand for a Take That concert tour in the US?”.

The management companies and record labels for artists such as Take That are convinced that there is no demand for these artists outside UK and Europe. This assertion is based primarily on the fact that these artists/bands have no exposure via terrestrial radio outside of Europe. But is terrestrial radio the final word in terms of determining the lack of viability of a concert tour for a globally successful artist? Maybe not.

In this world of big data, it appears that the music industry displays the most resistance to leveraging data in making marketing and promotion decisions around musicians. Record labels are to blame for this. They continue to resort to “old world” approaches such as “focus groups” to figure out the marketability of their artists. Decisions are made primarily on gut instinct and are very often divorced from reality.

When deciding whether or not an act such as Take That is viable in Argentina from a concert tour perspective, the following questions need to be answered:

 What is the market demand (in terms of potential ticket buyers) for acts such as Take That in Argentina and what cities is this demand concentrated in (if indeed there is a concentration)?

If there is market demand, how many shows can be put on and in which cities?

Can the tickets be priced in such a way that the tour is profitable? Depleted levels of demand on a per-city basis can make this a tough one.

 

For bands that do not have a significant commercial footprint in a specific country’s mainstream (i.e. not much terrestrial radio play), record sales is NOT a good indicator of domestic demand for an artist or band. So given that record sales are inadequate and radio airplay on terrestrial radio is practically non-existent, what is the answer?

The answer can be summarized in two words – “social data”. In the last few years, companies like The NextBigSound have proved that a music listener’s activity on a social network (especially as it relates to his or her favorite artists) is a stronger predictor of music consumption patterns than responses to old-world research approaches such as focus groups and surveys. It is absolutely mindboggling that record companies do not dig into this pool of social data to make any of their decisions about their artists. Here is the best part of this data. It is literally available to ANY of us (or so we think!).

We used Facebook’s Audience Insights to project demand for Take That in Argentina (and a few other countries in South America).. For this analysis, Facebook’s Audience Insights gives us the following data:

 

  1. The number of ACTIVE “Take That” fans (based on whether or not a facebook user explicitly “likes” Take That) in each country.
  2. For a given country, the “percentage split” of Take That fans across the country’s major cities.

We made the following assumptions in our exercise of determining whether or not Take That live gigs are profitable in South America:

 

  1. Take That’s tour promotion company can get the word out on the live gigs to ALL the band’s facebook fans in each of the South American countries that we analyzed.
  2. Facebook gives us a lower estimate and a higher estimate of the active monthly fans of Take That. The number associated with the lower estimate is equal to the number of guaranteed ticket buyers for a Take That concert.
  3. The likelihood of a Facebook fan to buy a ticket is NOT lowered by the fact that Jason Orange and Robbie Williams are no longer part of Take That’s current incarnation.
  4. All the demand for a concert is LOCAL. No one will travel from one city to another to watch Take That. For instance, a fan in Rosario (Argentina) will NOT travel to Buenos Aires (Argentina) to watch the concert. We made this assumption to be conservative.
  5. The cost basis for Take That to perform in South America is similar to that of artists such as Ed Sheeran and James Blunt – both of whom have enjoyed success with live gigs in Argentina.
  6. Take That needs to be able to sell a MINIMUM of 5000 tickets in a city for the concert(s) in that city to be profitable.
  7. There is ZERO “opportunity cost” associated with Take That spending a few weeks in South America for live concerts.

We have infographics for Take That’s fanbase in the following countries – Argentina, Chile, Brazil, and Peru.

ARGENTINA:

 TakeThat-Facebook-Argentina

The infographic above suggests that Take That has a minimum of 15,000 active Facebook fans in Argentina. Fortunately, this fanbase is not dispersed and is concentrated in Buenos Aires (40% of the fanbase is here). Assuming the “percentage splits” in the above infographic can be applied to the 15,000 number, and that all 15000 fans would buy tickets to a Take That concert, Take That is guaranteed to sell a minimum of 6000 tickets (i.e. 40% of 15,000) in Buenos Aires – and hence meets the guideline for profitability in this city.

 

BRAZIL:

 Take That-Brazil-facebook

The infographic above suggests that Take That has a minimum of 30,000 active Facebook fans in Brazil. In comparison with Argentina, Take That has a critical mass of fans in two cities – Rio De Janeiro and Sau Paulo. Assuming the “percentage splits” in the above infographic can be applied to the 30,000 number, and that all 30,000 fans would buy tickets to a Take That concert, Take That is guaranteed to sell a minimum of 5100 tickets (i.e. 17% of 15,000) in Rio De Janeiro and a minimum of 5100 tickets (i.e. 17% of 15,000) in Sau Paulo. Once again, Take That meets the guidelines for profitability in both cities.

 

CHILE:

Take That-Chile-facebook

The infographic above suggests that Take That has a minimum of 15,000 active Facebook fans in Chile. Like in Argentina, Chile’s Take That fanbase is concentrated in one city – Santiago (50% of the fanbase is here). Assuming the “percentage splits” in the above infographic can be applied to the 15,000 number, and that all 15,000 fans would buy tickets to a Take That concert, Take That is guaranteed to sell a minimum of 7500 tickets (i.e. 50% of 15,000) in Santiago.

 

PERU:

Take That-Peru-facebook

The infographic above suggests that Take That has a minimum of 10,000 active Facebook fans in Peru. Like in Argentina, Peru’s Take That fanbase is concentrated in one city – Lima (65% of the fanbase is here). Assuming the “percentage splits” in the above infographic can be applied to the 10,000 number, and that all 10,000 fans would buy tickets to a Take That concert, Take That is guaranteed to sell a minimum of 6500 tickets (i.e. 65% of 10,000) in Lima.

[JANUARY 31, 2015 UPDATE]: MEXICO

We do not really think of Mexico as being part of South America but it is still very much a huge part of Latin America’s core. Geographically speaking, it is not exactly a detour from South America. Logistically, it would make a lot of sense for Take That to add Mexico to a tour itinerary that revolves around South America. Interestingly enough, Mexico City just might have the most potential for ticket sales among the cities we have highlighted so far.

TakeThatMexico

The infographic above suggests that Take That has a minimum of 30,000 active Facebook fans in Mexico. Like in Argentina, Mexico’s Take That fanbase is concentrated in one city – Mexico City (33% of the fanbase is here). Assuming the “percentage splits” in the above infographic can be applied to the 30,000 number, and that all 30,000 fans would buy tickets to a Take That concert, Take That is guaranteed to sell a minimum of 10,000 tickets (i.e. 33% of 30,000) in Mexico City.

In summary, not only is a short South American tour financially viable for Take That, it is also guaranteed to be profitable under the set of assumptions that we outlined earlier. A Take That tour plan in South America would look something like the table below:

 

Country City Venue Tickets sold (per concert) Number of Concerts
Argentina Buenos Aires Gran Rex 3260 2
Brazil Rio De Janeiro Vivo Rio 5000 1
Brazil Sau Paulo HSBC Arena 4500 1
Chile Santiago Movistar Arena 7500 1
Peru Lima Coliseo de Eduardo Dibos 6000 1
Mexico Mexico City Palacio de Los Deportes 10,000 1

As mentioned before, this data is public. Record companies do not have to work hard to access this data. Their modeling assumptions to calculate the size the Take That concert “ticket buyer” market in South America might be different from the ones we have used but the source data is there and it is easily accessible. Now, all that needs to be done is for this post to be read by Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Mark Owen, 10 Management, and Polydor Records (Universal Music). We would associate even a mere consideration of our data and analysis a victory for South American Take That fans. Until then, here is a video from the fans in Argentina. It is a dedication to Take That a sincere plea to Manchester trio to grace their country with a live concert.

 

george-michael-amazing-playbutton

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10 Responses to "Is there demand for a Take That concert tour in South America?"

  1. Nerina says:

    Thank you, thank you, huge thanks!!! This means a lot to us. Great help!

  2. Kika says:

    Thanx for this! now we need to get this to TT’s

  3. @Nerina: You are most welcome.

    @Kika: TT’s management should see this. If nothing else, it will at least get them to start thinking about it.

  4. Marina says:

    Thanks so so much, we won’t give up, and you’re giving us a huge help with this! ^_^ #TTtoArgentina

  5. @Marina: For better or for worse, the music industry is still a business and there has to be a return on investment. I thought it would make sense to use data to prove that the return on investment from Take That concerts in South America is positive. I figured it would strengthen the cause of the #TTtoArgentina campaign.

  6. Karina says:

    Muchas gracias por el apoyo. Seria una inmensa felicidad poder lograr que vengan a nuestro pais!!

  7. @Karina: De Nada! Esperamos que Take That pueden representar en Sur America (lo siento! mi espanol es bastante mal!).

  8. robin says:

    I find your statistical analysis of a possible TT concert tour in South America most interesting. The figures presented certainly points to a healthy fanbase in South America for TT. But then I played the promotional video done by Argentinan fans and I don’t mean to pour cold water over their efforts but that video has only garnered 196 views! How on earth is that supposed to encourage TT to take the risk of going to South America for a tour? And if you at the other videos of TT that they have uploaded the numbers of views are not encouraging at all. I think the Argentinian fanbase has to do a lot more to get TT’s attention. They may have to enlist the help of fellow Argies who live in Europe or the UK to get TT to take notice.
    This was the tactic used by one woman who wanted Gary Barlow to sing at her best friend’s ( who is a huge TT fan ) wedding. Her campaign didn’t just start and end in the UK but worldwide. Somehow she got people outside the UK to hold up signs at his concerts asking him to sing at her friend’s wedding and it worked. Gary noticed the signs wherever he sang and that made him decide to sing at her friend’s wedding. So maybe this is the extent to which Argentinian fans have to go to. That video alone is definitely not enough.

  9. @robin: My sincere apologies for the delayed acknowledgment of your comment. I am hoping TT’s decision to South America would be based more on the Facebook numbers than they would be on the promotional video – namely because the success of the promotional video depends on the video creators’ ability to promote the video. It is less a reflection of Take That’s popularity in South America. I think the woman that got Gary to sing at her best friend’s wedding is a genius as far as I’m concerned. Very few people have the knack of putting on a promotional campaign with no money and getting it to mobile action. Thank you so much for the comment. Just out of curiosity, how did you discover our radio station?

  10. robin says:

    No need to apologize for your ‘tardiness’ 🙂
    Most of the blog post that I commented on is more than a year old now so I didn’t really expect a response but thank you for doing so. As a fan who had a passing interest in TT back in the 90s I renewed my interest when I came upon the news that Jason had left the group. As I dug deeper on the net I rediscovered their music and I got hooked so I came upon your radio station purely by chance :)It’s refreshing to see an American radio station devoting so much airtime to European music

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