Stop me if you’ve heard this one: An airline, a ticket platform and a ride-share company walk into a bar.
Earlier this week, Delta teamed up with Ticketmaster, Lyft and Airbnb to offer Delta flyers some additional ways to earn those precious miles during the dog days of summer, when we’re more likely to go to a concert or go on vacation.
SkyMiles members can now earn three miles for every dollar spent on an event—concerts, ball games, family shows, that sorta thing—between Jun. 3 and Aug. 31 in the U.S. and Canada by going to this website and entering your SkyMiles before every Ticketmaster purchase.
Lyft riders can earn a mile for every buck in the U.S. and two miles for every dollar on trips to/from airports; Airbnb-goers earn a mile for every dollar spent to live in someone else’s house.
For Delta, these types of partnerships are pretty simple: offer more ways for members to earn miles. Delta executives weren’t available for an interview, but according to a Delta spokeswoman, these partnerships often stem from hearing from what customers want. And what do they want? To earn miles on things they buy every day. Sounds like a nifty slogan, doesn’t it?
And for the summertime, that means road trips, vacations and concerts.
“Our mission is to make it easy to go to live events no matter where they are, and no matter what platforms people use to discover them,” said Dan Armstrong, svp and gm of distributed commerce at Ticketmaster. “We like being involved with best-in-class platforms and brands. Travel is a natural extension of that, an area we have not had tremendous focus on. … Millions of people are flying on their favorite airline and have the opportunity to connect with our brand, [and] it’s a natural connection to go to more events and earn more miles at the same time. We view it as a win-win for fans.”
Brand partnerships can be tricky, as companies need to balance each own’s customer’s affinities. In the digital age, policies can get even murkier, especially when looking at data exchanges. In this partnership, Armstrong said, it’s actually pretty straightforward.
Delta manages the landing page, where users put in their SkyMiles; the company then validates who you say you are. After you pass through that gate, Ticketmaster records the purchases back to that SkyMiles number. It seems so easy, right?
“It looks easy on the outside,” Armstrong said. “We do a number of types of integrations. Some, on the surface, like Delta, it’s a simple link and that’s the end of the visible integration. Other times we go deeper from a commerce perspective, where an API sells a ticket in a user experience.”
Think of purchasing tickets via Facebook or Amazon Alexa. In this Ticketmaster/Delta partnership, Armstrong said that the data is handled just like any other Ticketmaster purchase.
“Security is our top priority,” he said, “and not an angle of the partnership.”