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Letter from the Clemson Athletic Ticket Office

Aug. 12, 2007

August is now upon us, Football season is about to kick off for the Clemson Tigers, and ticket demand is at an all time high. As we approach the highly anticipated match up on Sept. 3rd against Florida State, I would like to communicate some of the challenges with tickets and, specifically, season tickets.

Recently, Clemson football season ticket sales hit a record this year of 57,991 and have now sold out. With season tickets sold, kick off packages (FSU and La-Monroe), student tickets, and the contractual allotment provided to visiting opponents contributed to the season ticket sellout. We still have individual tickets for various games, however, they are selling extremely well.

This article will explain the process of renewing, allocating, and providing season tickets to IPTAY donors/season ticket holders. Let me start by letting everyone know that our office has put an emphasis on improved customer service and ticket purchasing enhancements for all fans, donors and alumni.

You may have received a new email enhancement this year, which we called Solid Orange Mail. If not, we would love to have your email on file. Please send it to the ticket office at: cutixonline-l@clemson.edu.

It notifies you when your ticket renewal is available online. This is an email system that is integrated with our ticket system that provides for an easy log in and online experience. Our online renewals for the 2006 football season was 1,010 IPTAY donors/season ticket holders. For the 2007 football season, we approached 4,000 IPTAY donors completing online renewals out of 12,588 season ticket holders.

This is close to 30 percent for the 2007 season. On-line ordering provides our staff additional time to spend with season ticket holders on any questions that may arise via, in person, phone or email. Let me say again that our philosophy is customer service, providing help, and making your ticket purchase an easy and enjoyable experience. Our football ticket renewal rate is very high every year and is a tribute to our loyal IPTAY donors and season ticket holders.

Our renewal rate was 98 percent this year, which leaves very little room for additional, new and requested seat changes. This, coupled with a 15 percent increase in IPTAY donors and a record year for season ticket sales, makes assigning seats a more comprehensive task than just taking orders for season tickets.

The process for football season tickets is that IPTAY donors who have completed at least 50 percent of their IPTAY donation by the March 15th deadline are sent a football season ticket application. With the implementation of the IPTAY seat equity plan in late August, we are changing the deadline to February 15th. This will provide the ticket office more time to spend reviewing seat requests in the future.

The IPTAY Seat Option Plan provides the season ticket holder the first right or refusal for the seats they occupied the previous year. Also, donors have the option to order additional season tickets because there is no waiting list for full season tickets.

Once the deadline passes for season tickets, which is usually the middle of May, everyone who had season tickets the previous year is placed back into the seats they previously occupied.

Then, we view all accounts by IPTAY level and then, by points within giving level.

All requests for seat assignments are based on available seating within the IPTAY donor level and priority point system. This is a fundamental aspect of utilizing our priority system as a fair and equitable process to assign tickets.

In late August, every season ticket holder will receive a brochure explaining the new seat equity plan, which will be implemented in 2008. Keep in mind, we will not be reseating but will provide donors an opportunity to maintain their seats — which may result in having to increase your current level of giving.

Once the IPTAY Seat Equity Plan goes into effect, it will enable us to help donors improve their seating, retain their seats, and provide the ticket office more flexibility to accommodate ticket requests.

This year our IPTAY donors who requested changes in seat assignments and made new ticket purchases combined for a total of 19,464 tickets. In 2006, the requests and new ticket purchases totaled almost 17,000. With this said, it is clear the demand has grown over the past year and that it is a difficult task.

The accompanying chart on this page is a breakdown of how many seat requests we looked at within each IPTAY level.

2007 IPTAY Level Number of Accounts Number of Tickets Involved
Heisman 102 1074
Fike 50 537
McFadden 62 444
IPTAY 587 3829
Howard 288 1411
Tiger 1148 5622
Champion 728 2637
Orange 974 2925
Purple 271 580
Regular 87 405
Total 4297 19464

Football season tickets are scheduled to be mailed out the second week in August. If eligible, parking will accompany your package. The ticket office and IPTAY office are here to help all Tiger fans, as well as to provide tremendous experience as all fans enjoy a game at Death Valley. The stage is set for only 6-7 home games a year so we need to value each and every game. Anything we can do to improve the customer experience, please let us know.

We will always welcome any suggestions and comments that you may have. You can email us at cutixonline-l@clemson.edu or call us toll free at 1-800-CLEMSON.

Clemson is very fortunate to have such a strong following. The Athletic Department thanks you for purchasing season tickets and for the support of the IPTAY Annual Fund.

Go Tigers! Travis FurbeeAsst. Athletic Director/Ticket Operations

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