Picking up an audience – Part 1

Getting an audience for your new show is like dating . . . I think this metaphor is going to need a little more explanation!


Last week I went to a workshop run by Trevor Young called “Developing a Marketing and PR platform”. For those two hours we heard about the benefits of every single type of social media available in the market place and why we should be using ALL OF THEM.

While I agreed with a lot of fantastic points that were made throughout the workshop and learnt some very innovative ways that social media can be used, this was one statement to which I disagreed . . . especially in the expensive play and musical market.

Many new blockbuster movies use every social media site they can access to promote their latest film. Visit one of their websites and see if they aren’t:

  • Putting the latest production news on a Facebook page
  • Counting down to the release on Twitter
  • Uploading production photos to Pinterest
  • Showing trailers on YouTube
  • AND getting the cast to post photos from the set on Instagram

This is great when the consumer is only paying $15 to go and see the movie, but when they are going to be shelling out upwards of $120, I think we need to show a little more finesse!

(This is where the dating metaphor comes in!)

If you were looking for someone to date you would hopefully show a little more class than just walking up to attractive people and saying ‘Date me’ or ‘Buy me dinner’. This is because there are a lot of costs involved in a date; not just monetary, but time costs and psychological costs.

The costs that occur in dating are very similar as those involved in visiting the theatre. You spend a lot of money and you have to set aside the time in advance knowing that there is the possibility that you may not enjoy the experience that you are about to go through. So the point I am getting at is to choose your social media sites carefully and try to cultivate a relationship with your followers rather than being stuck in a constant state of Me, Me, Me across as many websites as you can reach.

Think back to when you are looking for a date, you at least pretend to be interested in them to start with, and if this is done properly, not only will the come back again, but they may bring a friend next time . . . . Now that’s something you don’t see on all dates!

What do you think is the best way to build this kind of relationship with your audience? Leave your comment below.

Or let me know your best theatre pick-up line. The best I have found was: I want to hasa diga you, not eebowai (Book of Mormon).