The Detroit Lions made an announcement on Monday about their ticket prices for the 2014 season. Specifically, they announced the introduction of variable ticket pricing. Rather than price tickets the same for every single game, they have established three different pricing categories. The lowest pricing category includes preseason games, which are going down in price by 70 percent. The highest category features the Lions' premium games (Thanksgiving, prime time games, etc.), with the middle category featuring the other regular-season contests.
Overall, those who have season tickets will actually be seeing an average increase of 8.2 percent in price for 2014. Although ticket prices for the preseason have been lowered, the jump in price is the result of higher costs for games in the regular season. According to the Lions, this puts their average ticket price at $83.36, which is still near the bottom of the league (no higher than 25th depending on what changes other teams make). Last year, the Lions were 29th in average price, so this isn't that big of an increase in the grand scheme of things.
So why exactly did the Lions decide to implement variable ticket pricing? Here's what they said in their press release:
"Data from the secondary market has equipped us to make more educated and fair pricing decisions based on anticipated demand," said Vice President of Ticketing and Suite Sales Todd Lambert. "We're now using that information to offer a better ticket experience for season ticket members who previously paid the same price regardless of the matchup or viability as a regular or preseason game."
In essence, the Lions are reacting to the demand that comes along with each game. For a preseason game, for example, you could easily get tickets on the secondary market for well below face value. As a result, the Lions have adjusted face value so more fans will simply get tickets through them. Conversely, for Thanksgiving games or Monday night matchups in the past, prices have exceeded face value, so the Lions have increased face value for those games. Basically, instead of treating every game the same from a price standpoint, the Lions are actually paying attention to what kind of demand there is from fans on a game-by-game basis.