HelloSugoi’s go-to-market strategy
Incremental improvements lead to exponential advances
The HelloSugoi MVP (minimum viable product) was launched on Thursday, June 15th, 2017 at 11:23pm PST in downtown Los Angeles, CA. The first ticket was sold on Thursday, June 22nd, 2017 at 4:45pm in Santa Monica, CA.
Our MVP enables event organizers to create events and allocate tickets, and for consumers to buy tickets with Ether. To date, our platform has powered ticket sales for nearly a dozen case study events, including State of Digital Money (July 2017), BlockCon (October 2017), and Ethereal SF (October 2017).
Aside from a few API calls, the HelloSugoi MVP is a pure dApp (purely decentralized). However, after months of selling tickets on our platform, we found that the world may not be ready for pure decentralization. Validating? Yes. Scalable? Not yet…
Are blockchains the silver bullet?
As I’ve written before, event ticketing is fundamentally flawed. Although we’re confident blockchains are the way forward, the problems facing the industry are sizable. Innovation requires more than just better technology. In a relationship-driven business culture, technological solutions have arguably less influence on how things get done than relationships do.
Entertainment Industry = Relationships > Technology
In the past few years, Blockchains have been proposed to solve all kinds of problems in the music industry: rights attribution, revenue sharing, digital streaming… And although these use cases are theoretically valid, little progress has been made in terms of widespread industry adoption. Any attempt to “blockchain” the music industry has been brick-walled by proprietary contracts, international copyright law, performance rights organizations, and most impenetrably, long standing relationships.
However, all of this is soon to change.
In the next 10 years, blockchains are likely to disrupt the very internet itself. Napster will seem insignificant by comparison. If not addressed, the very foundation upon which legacy institutions have built their businesses will inevitably change, leaving them to choose between innovation or obsolescence.
Collaboration and Integration
Entry in to an already crowded event ticketing market is prohibitive. Barriers include dominance by Ticketmaster, who implement multi-year exclusive contracts with promoters, venues, event organizers, and artists.
Although commendable, trying to disrupt Ticketmaster by building an entirely new paradigm-shifting blockchain-based event ticketing platform is currently unrealistic. They do, after all, control a massive amount of event ticketing inventory (80% market share in the USA). Without access to relevant ticket inventory, it doesn’t matter how cool your technology is. The goal here is to sell tickets, not blockchain.
So… how do we enter the market? It’s what I like to call R.C.I.I. (no, I don’t actually call it that).
In the last 12 months, we’ve had meetings with industry leaders at Live Nation, Eventbrite, StubHub, WME, Paradigm, Goldenvoice, SongKick, SquadUP, Goldstar, Blood Company, Prime Social Group, Sofar Sounds, FanFair Alliance, among others. Angello and I are often the first people to introduce blockchains to these industry leaders, and so far, the conversations have been both productive and validating. There’s clearly a place for blockchains and smart contracts in the entertainment industry.
As such, we’re open to working with established entertainment industry players in an effort to identify and solve real problems. Dear Hollywood, let’s collaborate and build the blockchain-based smart contract protocol for the future of the entertainment industry. Here’s how:
Live Entertainment Ecosystem — Industry Partnerships
We’re building an event ticketing protocol. Our protocol can be leveraged by existing event ticketing platforms, event organizers, promoters, and artists to provide greater transparency, security, and efficiency in the event ticket life-cycle.
Pilot Events — Case Studies
HelloSugoi is facilitating ticket sales to a series of pilot events. The team is partnering with existing event organizers, promoters, booking agents, and artists to facilitate pilot events in an effort to carefully test and produce a robust event ticketing solution for the entire event industry.
Event Financing Protocol— Smart Contract Infrastructure
HelloSugoi will build a decentralized event financing ecosystem. Blockchain-based smart contracts can facilitate, verify, and enforce the negotiation and execution of agreements. Smart contracts can be programmed to facilitate the entire event payment and financing process. Examples include artist payments, venue contracts, sponsorship deals, vendor service agreements, and blockchain-backed event financing.
Ultimately, incremental improvements lead to exponential advances. Integration and collaboration with existing entertainment companies will enable us to learn how to effectively leverage blockchain-based smart contracts to solve many of the problems currently plaguing the industry and beyond.