The Perfect Ending
So often, shows ask fans to write in to congratulate the cast on their fantastic run and wish them good luck for their final performance. Well, Legally Blonde thought they would flip that on their head!
As we are approaching the final Australian performance of Legally Blonde this Sunday, the cast have decided not to fizzle out into nowhere like most endings to musical seasons. Instead, each of the main cast (plus one of the dogs!) have uploaded a couple of paragraphs saying goodbye to both the production and their fans on the Legally Blonde Facebook page.
I have no doubt that there are people out there thinking ‘Who cares, they don’t have any more tickets to sell, they aren’t coming trying to convince you to come back, so why waste time saying goodbye?’. Well, let me see if I can prove those of you wrong . . .
Whatever service you are engaging in, the ending is possibly the most important part. Why? Because it is the final interaction that the service provider has with the audience. And as a result, if it is negative then that is the first thing that the audience will recall.
Consider Legally Blonde, people will recall their experience with the show for a number of reasons. If they are contemplating seeing the cast again in another show (i.e. Wicked). If they are contemplating returning to the Princess Theatre to see another show. And, more generally when they next contemplate purchasing tickets to any show.
By saying goodbye (and thank you to the fans) the cast and the theatre are building their brands. As a consumer, you feel touched that they recognise your support and are gracious that you took the time to come to the theatre. Big Plus.
In fact, it turns you into a future consumer when you see the advertisements for Wicked starring Lucy Durack. If you have seen her thank you letter on the Legally Blonde Facebook page, then you are likely to recall the letter when it comes to considering purchasing tickets for Wicked. And the positive feelings brought on by the time they spent saying ‘thank you’ will certainly sway consumers.
The only downside to this initiative is that the focus is still on the main six cast members. There are many other cast members who have scored leading roles in new shows, such as Ed Grey (Boq in Wicked), Steve Danielsen (Fiyero in Wicked) and Ali Calder (Elphaba standby in Wicked), and unfortunately they will not get the chance to build their brands. A shame when goodbye letters from these people could bring current audiences to their new projects. But who knows, maybe Legally Blonde will surprise us and post some thank you and goodbye letters from them this weekend!
So remember, you can invest a lot of time and money into saying hello to new audiences but it is all worthless if they are left with a sour after-taste!