A year later, Zalaski continues to crush it.
“Conquer what you are doing now and that will create opportunities elsewhere.”
That is the motto of the now VP, Ticket Sales & Service of the Houston Dynamo, Dash and BBVA Stadium, Brett Zalaski. With lofty goals in mind, Brett has determined the best way to reach them is to master what he is doing in the moment, then strive for what might be on the horizon.
We talked with Brett just over a year ago about his interesting career path and how he ended up where he was at the time. You can read more about that here.
Now, he heads the ticket sales and service for three different entities, a challenge he has yet to face.
“I oversee ticket sales and the service aspect for the Houston Dynamo, Dash and BBVA Stadium. The Dynamo are really our bread and butter, but we also have the Dash and BBVA, which has its own events throughout the year. The easiest way to put it is that we have one sales team to cover all three, but people specialize with certain entities.”
In our last interview with Brett, he mentioned the importance of being able to multi-task. That is now truer than ever in his current role. Having to sell tickets to men’s and women’s soccer games, stadium events and keep up his company, Get After It Sales, brings many unique challenges, one of the biggest being the obstacles that come with selling soccer in the United States.
While it is clearly on the rise in terms of expansion and attendance numbers, it is still a tough sell in a market that is just beginning to understand the beautiful game.
Balancing sales for three different organizations means developing different strategies and approaches for each.
“This first year is about understanding the fans in Houston and what they are searching for in terms of entertainment. We have to take our time in getting to know them and then tailoring our approach to appeal to those fans.”
Oftentimes, people might find success doing things a specific way and just assume it will continue to work no matter the situation. Brett, on the other hand, has done quite the opposite throughout his career. Taking the time to understand each and every fan base and build a unique approach is a large reason he has been so successful throughout all of his endeavors.
For example, during Brett’s stint at the Columbus Crew, a large portion of his focus was put on two markets: millennials and businesses. These are two markets that do not necessarily care about wins and losses as long as their needs are being met.
His strategy at the Crew allowed him and his team to break sales and attendance records and become the top growing fan base in the MLS. Instead of assuming that would work in Houston, Brett is honing in on the new market and developing strategies and value propositions that will get fans into BBVA Stadium.
Another factor in Houston is that of the Astros, currently the best team in baseball. Do people want to spend their hard earned money to see the best team playing America’s Pastime or to see an MLS match? Brett brings up an interesting point to this question.
“Success for the Rockets, Astros, Dynamo, Dash means success for sport as a whole in Houston. This will make people decided to choose sports over other entertainment options in Houston, which ultimately will boost our attendance.”
Rather than seeing other teams in Houston as competitors, he sees them as all working towards one goal, and that is making sport popular in Houston and getting more people to choose sport.
Another important point that Brett brings up is that the MLS is more so about the overall experience as opposed to the product on the field. If he can provide the best experience possible, the product on the field should not affect attendance. Through eight games at BBVA Stadium, the Dynamo are 7–0–1. However, while winning does not hurt, it is not what Brett bases his sales pitch on. He would rather provide a great experience, which is something he can ultimately control.
Brett has been quite successful throughout all of his endeavors. We would like to thank him for yet again providing valuable insights for our readers. We wish him the best of luck in his future and look forward to seeing where he goes from here.
Front Office Sports is a leading multi-platform publication and industry resource that covers the intersection of business and sports.
Want to learn more, or have a story featured about you or your organization? Contact us today.
If you liked this, click the???? below so other people will see this here on Medium.