So if you know me well you know that I’m a dancer. I love to dance and I love to go to any type of performing arts show so I was really interested in learning more about how different performing arts companies are using social media to promote their performances and to create interactions with their cast and crew members.
After searching around for a little bit I found a Mashable article about How Broadway Talks to its Audiences Using Social Media by Ken Davenport. Davenport is Broadway and Off Broadway producer and founder of the social networking site BroadwaySpotted.com. BroadwaySpotted originally BroadwaySpace is a social media site made for and by Broadway performers and enthusiasts. There are links to reviews of shows, performer biographies, ticket purchasing options and links to their Twitter page for live streaming news about everything #broadwaybaby.
Davenport is also the author of the blog TheProducersPerspective.com that covers everything you think of about producing a broadway musical.
Broadway is one of the largest businesses in New York City with an average of $1 Billion a year in sales alone so it provides a large amount of the economic fuel of the city drawing tourists from all around the world to the city. However, even though Broadway is a hugely popular and profitable industry they are way behind the times as far as their use of online technology such as social media according to Davenport. One of the main reasons is that the quintessential musical fan is the “55 Year Old Woman” who was born before the computer era and well before the social media era. However, since the future fan’s are avid online users it is time for Broadway to engage customers on social media platforms like never before.
Another problem for Broadway producers is that they don’t sell their productions directly to customers. They go through 3rd party ticket sellers like Ticketmaster so producers do not get the customer data needed to better meet customer needs but with interactions on social media producers can finally communicate with their customers.
There are some shows that are using their own individually branded social media sites like Rock of Ages.
And using their lists of followers on Twitter as a direct response tool. Rock of Ages also plays 80s themed games with their followers to keep them engaged in the show and more likely to talk about it online or with friends in the near future.
Theater goers normally attend shows in groups of people with similar interests so producers can target groups of people similar to the themes of the shows to get them to come to the show and bring their friends. Producers are using social media sites targeted towards people with certain similarities to promote their new shows with deals and prizes.
So in conclusion I have learned that Broadway may be a little behind in their adoption of social media but there is so much potential for its success that more and more shows will have their own sites and users. Because though people may argue with me about this I think that a Les Miserables fan is just as passionate about the new rendition of Les Miserables on Broadway as a Boston Red Sox Fan is about the new baseball season.