From Google: Ticketing tactics in a tough economy.

One of the benefits of giving Google gaggles of cash each month is that you get access to a team of googlites that have access to more data than you could ever dream about.
And they share it.
So I’m going to share it with you.
Here’s an email I got from my Google Entertainment Team with a bullet point list of what to do in times like these . . . and frankly, anytime.

Making Greater Impact With Less Investment

The impact of the current economic slowdown has shown a ripple effect across numerous industries. Ticketers are not immune – the industry continues to see volatility in both Broadway and sporting event ticket sales, while concert sales remain strong.  Maximizing return on investment is an important priority for everyone.  In response, we have compiled a quick list of tactics that can help you deliver results to support your ROI goals:

    • Effectiveness and Efficiency Always Drive Value.  Use data-driven insights to guide your marketing messages and outgoing media strategies.  Google tools like Insights for Search and Ad Planner can help you keep an eye on emerging trends.
    • Target the Right Customers. New technology allows you to reach audiences with increasing granularity, yet still at scale. Now more than ever, it’s important to translate consumer insight into targeting precision.
    • Measure, Optimize and Repeat.  Use measurement tools to better understand what is working and how to make adjusts that can lead to improved results.  57% of online advertisers have used site analytics to evaluate their campaigns, but only 38% have used the data to inform their next steps. Don’t just store findings – use information on consumer behavior and ROI to optimize campaign performance.

Due to the challenges we all face in today’s economy, Google recently launched Measuring Up in a Downturn, a site comprised of additional strategies and Google tools – many free – that can help you achieve your ROI goals.

Thanks Goog – for keeping us on track (and for keeping us spending money with you, of course).
Do check out that Insights for Search site.  You can see search trends over years of any phrase you want:  Broadway, Off-Broadway, Your Name (you know you want to).
You can also figure out things like this . . .

The Top Rising Google Searches (past 30 days) in Category: Ticket Sales

  1. dane cook
  2. no doubt
  3. ncaa tickets
  4. dave matthews tickets
  5. dave matthews
  6. dave matthews band
  7. nickelback
  8. live nation tickets
  9. george strait
  10. yankee stadium
Yikes.  After reading this list, I figure I have two choices:
A)  Give up theater because there isn’t a Broadway show on the list
B)  Go see if Dave Matthews wants to do a musical!
Thanks again, Google.

Today is World Theatre Day: Here’s How To Celebrate.

Who knew?

Today is World Theatre Day, which began in . . . are you ready for this?  1961!
Here’s a blurb about it from the TCG website:

World Theatre Day was created in 1961 by the International Theatre Institute, and is celebrated annually on March 27 by ITI Centers and the international theatre community, with the reading of a World Theatre Day Message and various national and international theatre events being organized to mark this occasion.

You can celebrate by including the message at a performance you’re doing, joining the FB group, following WTD tweets, and by checking out the official blog.
But here’s how I recommend you celebrate, and it’s simple, and fun.
  • Pick a show, any show (Broadway, Off, Off-Off, Regional Community or High School) that you were NOT already planning to see.
  • Go see that show tonight!
  • Bring a friend that normally wouldn’t go to the theater.
  • Come back to this blog and tell everyone what you saw.

Your birthday isn’t the same without cake.  4th of July just isn’t the same without fireworks.

And World Theatre Day isn’t the same without a show.
What’s cool is that the right shows can be like eating cake and watching fireworks all at the same time.
Enjoy the day!

Amazon can do it. Why can’t we? Earn cash with my new Altar Boyz affiliate program.

One of the first chinks in the armor of the big traditional media companies was first noticed in 1996, when turned us all into media companies with the unveiling of their monster affiliate system.

How does it work?  Sell one of their products via a unique link to their website . . . and make money.  As simple and brilliant as the straw, right?  Amazon got risk-free placement of their ads and extra traffic to their site, and the web publishers, no matter how big or small, found a way to monetize their online activities.

In other words, they got a free army of sales soldiers going into battle . . . for free.

Affiliate marketing is now in a zillion different online industries, and companies big and small, from Netflix to EasyFlirt, have all been reaping the benefits and giving great part time jobs to a lot of people passionate about those companies’ products (and those part time gigs are coming in pretty handy right now, I’m sure).

That got me thinking . . . if Affiliate marketing can work for every other business, why not Broadway and Off-Broadway, right?

Yet no one else is doing it.  Are you shocked?  I didn’t think so.

So, taking a cue from bigger businesses, as I often do, I’m proud to introduce . . .


Here’s how it work:

  1. Apply to be an Altar Boyz affiliate by clicking here.
  2. We’ll send you a personal code/link for a special discount ticket to Altar Boyz.
  3. Get people to buy tickets using your code however you’d like.
  4. For every ticket you sell?  You earn $10.  That’s right.  1 ticket = $10.  Sell 10 a day, make $100 a day!  Sell 100 a week, make $1,000!!!
  5. Retire early.

And did we tell you that the discount price you’ll have access to is only $45?  That gives you one of the best discounts available.  Put it on your blog or your facebook.  Email your friends.  Plan a group outing for your church/temple/whatever.  The amount of money you can make is only limited by the number of seats we have in the theater!

To read more about the program, click here.

And now, I have to run and see what else other big successful companies are doing so I can see how I can retrofit it to my business.

Who says there are no jobs in this economy. Here are 2!

Are you an Un?  If so, then you should be looking for a new job.

What’s an Un?  Unemployed, uninspired or under-appreciated.

Don’t wait for your old job to call you back if you got laid off (that’s like staying home on a Saturday night waiting for a girl/guy who dumped you to call), and don’t sit back and wait for your current job to get better.  It won’t.

Look for another opportunity, or even better, create your own.

Here are a couple of job opps that appeared in my inbox this week, including one gig with a subsidiary of my company:


The Director of Development will be responsible for overseeing and executing the organization’s development and marketing strategies, including:  maintaining relationships and communication with diverse sources of contributed income (including individuals, corporations, foundations, and government agencies); identifying, cultivating and soliciting potential funding prospects; overseeing the fulfillment of member, patron, and sponsor benefits; maintaining development mailing lists and research files; and supervising development interns, grant writers, and other part time employees or independent contractors who are engaged by NYMF to assist with development activities.

The person who fills this role will ultimately be responsible for maintaining and building the community of support for the organization to enable the strategic growth of the organization and to ensure that the festival can continue to be an affordable and accessible venue for independent artists.

Excellent writing, oral communication, and customer service skills are essential.  Computer proficiency, including MS Office (Excel, Word, Outlook).  Prior experience in development or fund raising.

The ideal candidate will be a creative thinker and strategic marketer interested in growing with the organization.

Salary is $30-45k, commensurate with experience.

Interested applicants should email Elizabeth Lucas at


Davenport Theatrical Enterprises, Inc. is seeking an Editor/Content Manager for three websites which it founded and manages:

Responsibilities will include:

– Coming up with feature story and video ideas
– Coordinating the production of feature videos with our crew
– Writing daily news blurbs and feature stories
– Managing reviewers
– Uploading photos, videos to websites

The ideal person for this position would possess the following skills and qualifications:

– Experience in theatrical media (preferably websites)
– Relationships with theatrical press reps
– Strong computer skills (graphic design, photoshop, video editing and HTML a plus)
– Excellent and exciting writer
– Organized and outgoing
– Interested in getting involved with a start up business and helping it grow.

We see this as a part-time position that would lead to full time. There may be the possibility to work from home.

Salary commensurate upon experience.

Interested applicants should email

Good luck in becoming an un-Un!

Live Nation and Ticketmaster Merge: What does it mean for Broadway? Nation has been on a tear over the past few years, shaking things up first with music deals (like Madonna’s), second with announcing that they were going to sever ties with Ticketmaster and create their own ticketing service, and third, this week they reversed that previous announcement and said they were merging with that ticketing warhorse, creating arguably the most powerful company in live entertainment marketing and production.

While I’m always fearful whenever competition falls away, I’m also a big believer in bringing systems “in-house” to allow other ancillary forms of revenue to offset costs of production (do you know how many more Broadway productions would recoup if they were able to reap some of the benefits of ticketing fees, concession fees, etc. . . . and more shows recouping, would mean more people investing, which would mean more productions that could take more artistic risk).

Live Nation is primarily a Producer, and I’ve gotta believe that they will tackle the revamping of the ticketing industry from that perspective, rather than the former TM perspective which was to make as much money for the ticketing transaction as possible.

So, I’m bullish that the merger could be good.

What does this mean for the Nederlander Broadway houses that currently use Ticketmaster?

Do I expect service fees to drop?  Not likely.  But I do expect the customer service experience (and the website) to improve (LN has already committed to a more transparent ticketing fee structure with no “nibbling” fees for print-at-home tickets, etc. that get tacked on at the end of transactions.

There is one thing that does make me nervous.  One of the other things that Live Nation did over the past few years to shake things up . . . was sell off their Broadway biz.

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Only 5 more days to enter the Broadway Fantasy Virtual Investment Game, WILL IT RECOUP?