Key initiatives to help BookMyShow leadership foresee future of entertainment beyond ticketing.
Bookmyshow for past 20 years has been in the ticketing business for Movies and Live Entertainment. With 50M MAUs and 10M tickets sold each month, you could find a ticket for a small Christmas party in a small town to 80K seating capacity IPL cricket match tickets.
3 reasons to think beyond convenience fee
- Despite India having a big culture for movies and live gigs, we saw a potential competition from OTT platforms and Youtube which has now become default mode of entertainment.
- We were sitting on a gold mine of data with millions of movie reviews (at times more than IMDB and Rotten tomatoes put together). BookMyShow’s rating system was a deciding factor for Box Office success and we wanted to leverage it further.
- 50M MAUs and 10M tickets. We called these these 40M “non bookers” and “dreamers”. Our strength was, a strong network of movies stars, standup comedians, sports man and production houses across the country — We had the right levers to engage these dreamers to eventually convert or build potential revenue streams by serving contextual ads.
Me along with the Product head re-architected and re-imagined the product from being a pure transactional platform to being a content engagement App.
The new navigation served 2 purposes. Home tab, with which user’s were already familiar with, doesn’t undergo radical shift but surfaces smart filters and better discovery of things. Buzz was the new tab added which worked purely on engagement metrics. At the same time, we also decided to launch an exclusive merchandise store. Everything seem to sit perfectly. Home is where the ticketing will continue. Store is when the user is in a mood to shop and Buzz is consuming content .
The main challenge
More images, more content means more resources. I was already running a 70 member team. 15 Product Designers and the rest, 55 Graphics designers, illustrators and print designers. Being an entertainment and media company, it was obvious choice to hire more people. This is where product designers played a pivotal role in automation and making templates.
I worked across all stake holders from marketing, business to ground operations and of course our supply side, to explain the benefits of templates. Referenced Ticket Master, Event Brite and Fandango to evangelise and demonstrate efficiency of using templates to improve TAT. It was also a gigantic challenge to move all of them to ticket based service model to keep complete transparency in the process.
One of the biggest hurdle was to bring a perspective shift from being a service based company for production houses and event organisers to product based culture where we build tools and features to scale.
After making templates, I introduced automation tools like ImageKit for dynamically resizing images and serving them with faster performance. This was coupled with the use of ticketing system for all creative requests through Jira, by Atlassian. It involved a big learning curve for business operations and marketing team. It was handled effectively by regularly conducting workshops and training sessions. This also involved making few changes on the product side to make size more consistent and modular components.
Some amazing results due to this automation
- Product showed greater degree of consistency w.r.t images and their aspect ratios. This brought 11 different sizes to 2. 1 vertical and 1 horizontal image for 1 show.
- Turn around time for delivering all creative assets to make a show live came down to 2 hours from earlier 24 hours.
- Brought the team of 50 designers to 20. Repurposed bulk of the team for various other departments like Ad-tech, Watch Guide and Buzz. Over all productivity grew by 300%.
Automation and great hustle from all the teams made it possible to launch 3 big products in less than 2 quarters.
Impact on numbers
Since BookMyShow had a legacy code, all changes were incrementally made keeping a 3 to 6 month adoption cycle to the latest features.
- Buzz — We always had content sprinkled across the app. With a dedicated tab to consume content, time spent on Buzz tab grew from 10 seconds to about 13 minutes.
- Watch Guide — Since this was a new product, it started with 3–4k visitors and doubled it in 4 months with peak of 24k. Average time spent on Watch Guide was around 3 to 4 minutes.
- Ad-tech — This platform has helped BookMyShow to keep revenue flowing in the pandemic of 2020.
These products are live to experience on BookMyShow app. Give it a spin. Following are few screenshots for reference
Download the BookMyShow app. Thanks for reading till the end.