Why what you want is a win-squared.

Despite what you may have heard, there should be two winners to every negotiation.

The best result is a win-win, when two parties both walk away from the table feeling good about what they’ve accomplished for their side.

Because when two parties feel good, there is a much better chance for a long term relationship.

When one side stomps on the other, the stomper may feel some short term gain, but odds are that the living/working situation that will follow ain’t going to be too pleasant.

This simple concept is a basic rule of negotiation.

And . . . as I was thinking the other day as I was scrolling through my index of my most successful (and least successful) marketing initiatives . . . it should be a basic rule of marketing.

You can’t just think, “How do I sell the most tickets?” which translates to, “How do I win?”  That approach is way too “sell”-fish.  You have to think, “How does my audience member win too?  What does my audience member want?  What is going to make their lives more interesting/easier/better?”

Marketing campaigns to sell tickets or promotions to get attention for your show are the most successful when they put the audience member first.

And when you do it the right way, the customer doesn’t even realize they are being marketed to.

Need an example?  Click here.  Toilet seats down, one of my favorite win-wins ever.


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  • This is for the “king of statistics”. Don’t know if you are in to socionomics, but if not, you ought to be. They track the social mood in regards to the economy. Quite interesting:
    Take a look. It might be helpful in your prognostications.
    –Steven Conners.

  • Bravo! That really says the whole thing. I believe that like needs to be a win/win as often as possible and then a few more times than that!

  • Jeff Linamen says:

    I totally agree! This was the philosophy emphasized in my Negotiations and Deal-Making class I took last year. Win-Lose only results in bad blood and animosity. Eventually it is almost certain to lead to a Lose-Lose situation.

    Sky-rocketing ticket costs and availability is a hot button issue with me. I get to NYC about once a year and see as many shows as possible when I’m there. I’d come more often but when it’s often difficult to get good tickets six months in advance and I end up spending over $1,000 each trip– more frequently visits are unlikely.

    One positive: I really appreciate Ticketmaster’s interactive seating chart(in beta on Tele-Charge)making it easy to view and select seats.

    One more thing– Did you know Broadway-In-Chicago is now charging NY prices for touring shows? Tickets used to average $20 to $40 less than a Broadway ticket. You aren’t getting the same product. I avoid those shows now and would rather spend the extra travel dollars to see the NY productions with full production values intact (not scaled-down for touring), than pay the same price for a smaller cast and simplified set.

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