Ryan Hurst had the aspiration to transform the event ticket purchase process from his long history of working in the event industry.
Before joining ShowClix, Ryan spent nearly 10 years working at Chautauqua Institution as a Box Office Supervisor in southwestern New York state. Based along the shores of Chautauqua Lake, the Institution comes alive each summer with a unique mix of fine and performing arts, lectures, interfaith worship, and recreational activities that draw more than 100,000 visitors.
During his time at Chautauqua, Ryan supported and managed admissions into the resort grounds as well as their 5,000+ seat amphitheater. It has been host to the likes of Steve Martin, Sandra Day O’Connor, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Paul Simon, “Seinfeld’s” Jason Alexander, and The Beach Boys.
Ryan joined the ShowClix team in 2009 as the only Customer Care Representative. Six years later, Ryan manages the Customer Care team, who answers inbound calls from ticket buyers, ticket sellers, and our clients. Ryan also collaborates with other departments in our company to support and implement ShowClix’s growth strategies.
What is the most common question outside of ticket sales that you handle?
We strive for our Customer Care Department to be an extension of our client’s brand. We’ve learned that the most common questions outside of processing a sale surround information about an event and/or venue. Common questions include: how to print their tickets, directions to and from the venue, location of seats, or what they can and cannot bring to an event.
Our support team works at establishing strong relationships with our clients in order to become professionals at supporting their events. Our main goal is to take the daily support related pressures off of our clients (and their box office) so they can concentrate on the day-to-day preparations that lead up to their events.
Ticket sales are extremely fast-paced; how do you handle large call volumes when tickets go on sale?
In our line of work, there is nothing more exciting than a large on sale. We love the idea of being involved in this process every step of the way. While this can be stressful for both our clients and customers, our years of experience dealing with large demand on sales prove to be a quintessential part of what our call center brings to each one of our clients. Preparation is key along with having the most up-to-date information from the ticket seller helps for us to deal with the most difficult situations.
Ticket-buying questions can involve several different departments, how do you work as a team to help clients and customers?
Our account managers are the backbone of our company. They are there every step of the way with the client. For this reason, we have the closest relationship with them. Collaboration between the two departments is critical to the success of our company and our clients. Both departments operating in sync is what makes ShowClix a powerful platform outside of the use of its technology.
What is a unique customer care question you’ve received, and how did you create a solution for it?
I once personally delivered printed tickets to a customer’s doorstep. Being an online software company, mostly everything we do is electronic. However, a customer who contacted us by phone wanted to attend a local event but didn’t have a car or a printer. Therefore, I printed the tickets for her and delivered them to her doorstep. She was unbelievably appreciative!
What brought you to Pittsburgh initially, and what keeps you here?
I love everything about this industry, and I’ve always been determined to disrupt “what was normal” for how fans interact with a ticketing company. The opportunity presented to me at ShowClix is what brought me here and our founders (Josh and Lynsie) are what kept me here. When I interviewed with them, the concept of ShowClix was very young, but exciting. After meeting them, I was sold on coming to Pittsburgh and working for ShowClix.
On the first of November, I celebrated six years with ShowClix.
Today, the people, the city’s culture, and its proximity to home keep me here. I’m so fortunate to be surrounded by a team of individuals that love what they do just as much as I do.
It’s also been so great to be a part of this wonderful, positive transformation of Pittsburgh. It’s instilled a great sense of community which really makes you feel like you’re a part of its transformation.