Remember Groupon? It’s still going and instead of bombarding your inbox with a thousand spa retreat offers you never wanted or even expressed a vague interest in, it’s increasingly working with musicians now to offer tickets to their shows – and possibly more. Arcade Fire and Wiz Khalifa are among the latest acts to have their shows promoted this way. At the peak of its hype in 2011, Groupon signed a deal with Live Nation and in 2012 LivingSocial partnered with AEG on a similar basis. Billboard looks at this trend and beyond the usual platitudinous quotes from stakeholders about how this is a great way to raise “awareness” and capture “exposure”, it notes that Groupon’s discounting of 30-45% is shrinking and it’s no longer just a way to push tickets for shows and tours that are limping sales-wise. “We’ve increasingly seen that we don’t have to discount as much as we might have originally thought we did, and we have a big initiative internally within our group […] to discount less,” said Greg Rudin, VP & GM for GrouponLive. “The people that buy are not necessarily significantly price sensitive, they just don’t know about it.” Groupon is working with acts on bundled packages of CDs and DVDs and hints that its future will not just be about shifting cobwebbed inventory and that it may work with acts on new releases.

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