There are two main types of marketing you will need to consider:
- marketing your company and work to promoters
- marketing you work to audiences
marketing to promoters
The days of the burgeoning A4 marketing pack are mercifully over. This is not say that the pack still doesn’t have a place but it no longer needs to be stuffed with every bit of print information you can find. Put yourself in the promoters’ shoes; your pack will be just one of dozens thrust in their hands.
This is where your website really can become your best friend. All that basic company and show information can now be looked at with one click. Of course, there will still be times when you would want to hand over some print material, particularly at a face-to-face meeting. Below are some tips for both web and print marketing to promoters.
- make sure your website is up to date
- audit your site from the viewpoint of someone who doesn’t speak English as a first language – is it easy to navigate and to find stuff? Are big blocks of text broken up?
- are the contact details clear?
- have plenty of downloadable photographs, reviews, articles, links to videos
- consider having a specific promoters area, password protected if you like. Here you can upload technical requirements, budgets, touring plans, FAQ, education packs
- include links to your social network sites and blogs: Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, Flickr etc
- connect with potential partners so you can share news, information and build relationships
- a printed pack should only contain the most relevant, up-to-date information
- print the inserts yourself
- don’t include a back catalogue – flyers and reviews of past productions are not useful
- make a one-page compilation of review extracts rather than pages of full-length photocopies
- make sure there are clear links to your websites
- include a business card with contact details
- if you include a DVD, make sure it contains different excerpt lengths. It’s unlikely the promoter will have time to watch a full show at these initial stages
- consider different formats – A5 fits more easily into a bag
marketing to audiences
A large part of the responsibility for this will rest with the promoter who understands the local audience and will look after distribution. However, you are still responsible for supplying the materials. You will need to design a marketing plan that both you and the promoter can sign up to.
Your website (see tips above) is an important tool for audiences, especially the pages dealing specifically with the work. Consider asking your promoter for a translated summary of the work to include on the site. Audiences also like to hear from the actors, so consider asking them to write an occasional blog about the process.
Here are some tips for your marketing plan:
- agree what you will supply at the soonest opportunity
- agree on delivery deadlines
- don’t spend too much money on posters – sites for these are becoming rare and expensive
- the venue may want posters, check
- as well as flyers, consider postcards – certainly in Europe, cafés and restaurants have postcard racks
- when you originally design your print materials, check them for reuse. If one side is full of UK touring dates, for example, you may have to go to reprint
- is there a blank overprint space?
- make sure all your photographs have credits and ensure the credit is used
- if you are selling programmes, check in advance who will sell them, at what price and whether the promoter/venue will want a cut. Similarly with CDs and other merchandise. This may need to be included in the contract
- discuss the possibility of press interviews and television news
- discuss who will provide and pay for translators
- remember the press and PR potential at home too
Click here for ten top tips for tip-top marketing.