Why great marketers should study obstacle courses.
Selling tickets to a show?
Guess what? There are thousands of people that are interested in buying a ticket.
So why are you having trouble filling your house?
Something gets in their way.
Between interest and purchase lie oodles of obstacles that trip your customers up before they end up at your box office. Or sometimes those obstacles look so scary that your customers don’t even bother to start the course.
What might some of those obstacles be? They could be a whole bunch of things, like the price of your tickets, the parking at the theater, and so on. Every show and every theater may share some, but most likely also have their own.
So many marketers think that their job is solely to create interest in their product.
But that’s only half the job.
Job #1 is to create interest.
Job #2 is to remove (or reduce) obstacles.
And both are equally important.
But don’t assume you know what your customers’ obstacles are. You’ve got to find out exactly what is in their way before you can remove it.
Want a case study?
During the first few weeks of selling The Awesome 80s Prom, my sales team (which consisted of me and my yellow lab puppy in my apartment) noticed that a bunch of groups were taking forever to purchase, despite call after call of inquiry. And let me tell you, there ain’t nothing more frustrating than hearing people that want to buy, but don’t . . . especially when you’re trying to get a show off the ground. When I asked a few customers what the hold up was, I kept hearing about the same obstacles.
Obstacle: “It takes me a long time to explain what the show is and to get everyone to pick a date.”
Removal: Create custom email invitations that they could forward on to their friends, or offer to send the emails for them.
Or this one.
Obstacle: “I don’t want to pay for the entire group myself. I don’t even know some of these people!”
Removal: Create custom codes that could be sent to each group member so they could purchase their seats individually but still be a part of the same group.
Finding out about your customers’ obstacles and then clearing the pathway to purchase will make your customers happier and your grosses healthier.
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