Scottie is a platform that allows producers of ticketed events to quickly and easily create websites that sell tickets. The company’s MVP went live with their first two clients running two ticketing system integrations in February 2020.
Scottie is a husband and wife team made up of Connie and Andrew Girvan, an actor and theatre producer and an arts technology product manager respectively. Following two years as the Head of Operations and Head of Product for festival ticketing software and services provider Red61, Andrew wanted to offer producers, festivals, theatre companies and venues a way to tell their stories and showcase their productions online.
Scottie has been a collaborative process involving UI/UX designers based in Gdansk, Poland, and an open-source enterprise content management system developed by a team in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Their roadmap sees them integrate with additional ticketing systems and moving away from white-glove onboarding of clients to become more self-service.
Scottie’s development has included being participants in the Creative Bridge pilot intake, which reinforced the idea that the business should be a productised platform rather than a traditional web agency offering services to clients.
Their Resident Entrepreneur project was borne out of a realisation that as mass gatherings were banned by governments around the world in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, most theatre-makers would be struggling to source tools to allow them to collect customer data and monetise their online work. In response to this challenge, Scottie extended its platform to add a paywall which can be placed in front of video, audio or written content, allowing theatre makers to collect customer contact details, gain marketing consents and charge for their work.
This extension to Scottie’s platform also allows for organisations to solicit donations through self-service payment platform Stripe. For this project, the company collaborated with Edinburgh-based UI/UX designer and fellow Creative Bridge alumnus, Andy Johnston of Eido Studio.
As COVID-19 restrictions begin to ease, Scottie’s expectation is to see a return to mass gatherings and a liberalisation of restrictions around attending live performances. Changes to the English restrictions to allow socially-distanced performances have been encouraging and the company has been building functionality into their system to support segregated seating of groups.
The industry appears to be signalling at least a year of working in a “blended” fashion with a mixture of physical performances with small audiences and online work either as an additional revenue stream, or the main way that audiences can interact. Scottie will continue to support their digital-only festival clients with this work, including Fringe of Colour and SweetStream.
The need for fundraising tools in response to reopening buildings also cannot be underestimated with organisations having depleted their cash reserves during this period of inactivity. Government funding through Arts Council England and Creative Scotland has been forthcoming to help building-based organisations avoid insolvency, however, it is unlikely that ticket sales alone will be enough to cashflow productions. Scottie sees this as an area where their extended platform can be harnessed.
Scottie participated in our Engaging and Accessing New Audiences session at the 2021 CI Innovation Showcase.