Fishing in Times Square. I first moved to NYC, the only people selling stuff on the street were hookers and dealers.  And not the ones from Sweet Charity.

It’s quite a different story these days.  Take a look at some of the street teams we snapped pictures of over the last few weeks.  So many shows were street walking:  Chicago, Shrek, White Xmas, Altar Boyz, Spamalot, 39 Steps and 142 comedy clubs (not to mention the caricaturists, photographers, people like Duane, and more).

Why the change?  Simple.  When Times Square became a destination in the 90s, instead of a destination to avoid, the marketers descended upon it . . . because the pond was suddenly stocked.

Let me explain.

When I was a kid and used to fish . . . ok, scratch that . . . when I was a kid and used to make someone else put the worm on the hook and someone else take the fish off the hook and I would just ho the pole . . . we always knew when our local lake had been “stocked”, or when lots of fish had been literally dropped into the water for the catchin’ (a bit sick, I realize).  We used to look for the place along the lake where they had put in the fish, hoping the fish stayed in that area.  We stick our pole in the water and pull out fish after fish.

Times Square is now stocked with tourists, now that it’s a much healthier 
environment for our fish to live, breathe and buy tickets for shows.

Thankfully, you don’t have to put a worm on a hook to make that happen.  You just have to have a killer street team that knows how to sell.

  • SH says:

    A few other easy marketing ideas:
    To the extent that any shows are selling discounted tickets, why not offer them to student groups/societies/organizations at universities or colleges? Each university group/society/organization gets a budget at the begining of the year and has to spend all of the budget that same year otherwise it wont get as much the following year. Each group could subsidize the already discounted ticket provided by whichever show and that way you’ll have more people attend the shows and get more word of mouth advertising amongst a population that might typically not attend the shows due to the expense.
    You could even offer same day tickets to students by emailing the presidents of the organizations by 4 on any day, if you find that you have a significant number of seats available for that show.
    The benefit of getting the students is that they will recommend the shows to their parents, friends, and relatives who will no doubt visit at some point during the year AND that a lot of the schools in the city have a lot of international students who are more likely to actually spend the money on theatre as it is quite a novelty for them.
    It seems just as easy, if not easier than marketing in times square….less man-power (and warmer too)!

  • Joey says:

    Hookers in Sweet Charity? I think they are taxi dancers, no?

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