Think about this while you’re watching the Thanksgiving Day Parade.

It’s a tradition.

People wake up and turn on the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

How many people?

How about 22.3 million!


And you know what’s amazing about those kind of eyeballs?

The parade is one, giant, multiple-hour, float-sized, commercial.

All those floats advertise movies, TV shows, brands, singers and their albums, and yep, there’s even some Broadway show stumpin’ along the way.  McDonald’s, Power Rangers, SpongeBob, Trolls, and Macy’s (duh) are just a few of the big ol’ corporate emblems that’ll float down Broadway and into the minds of those millions of consumers tunin’ in.

But you’d never know it.

Because this kind of marketing is the best of all.  To use a modern buzz phrase . . . it’s called content marketing.  In fact, the Parade is probably one of the most classic examples of CM that is still being used today (and will be used for decades to come).  The Parade provides entertainment to consumers while at the same time promoting brands.  And it’s so entertaining to the consumer that they don’t even care (or know) that they’re being sold something.

What does this mean to you?

Most likely, you can’t have a parade for your show or your theater.  But you can brainstorm how you can provide extra value or entertainment for your potential ticket buyers to get them to pay more attention to you (and not your competition).

If you’re a rock show, do you have a “how to” video series in how to sing like your lead?

If you’re a Gilbert and Sullivan opera, do you have a free lecture on those originators of the operetta?

Or free tap class if you’re doing Anything Goes?

What’s great about content marketing is that it can be very low cost . . . and inspire incredible brand loyalty.

Or as I like to say, teach someone to fish, and they’ll probably buy even more fish from you.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!


(Got a comment? I love ‘em, so comment below! Email Subscribers, click here  then scroll down to say what’s on your mind!)

– – – – –


 Listen to Podcast Episode 99 with the VP of Live Theatricals for Universal Studios, Chris Herzberger! Click here.

– Interested in learning more about topics like this? CLICK HERE to join The TheaterMakers Studio, an online community, certification training program, and resource for playwrights, producers, directors, actors, and theater makers of all kinds!

  • Tom Hartman says:

    Having done marketing and development for non-profit theaters in the Chicago area, you’re not off the mark on this one. A majority of audience members in smaller theaters are people who did theater in high school, college or got pulled in by a partner/boy or girlfriend/kid to a community theater. I know the same thing holds true for classical music audiences. Offering context marketing is often a way to engage newer audience members. A theater here that does musicals recently had a four or five session class on “The Most Important Musicals”: Showboat, Pal Joey, Oklahoma, West Side Story, Music Man, Phantom and Hair/In the Heights. They taught why these are important historically and musically, showed clips and played OBC albums. They also covered basic terms and concepts – how a score’s songs are interlinked; the 11 o’clock number, how dance tells advances the story. It is one of their most popular education offerings.

  • Rick says:

    Thanks Ken ????????????

Leave a Reply to Tom Hartman Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *