A data file analysis of Writers’ Theatre’s subscribers revealed that its core audience members are active patrons in the Chicago cultural landscape, attending a wide variety of arts events and other forms of entertainment numerous times throughout the year including dance, museums, music, movies and sports.
AGE RANGE OF AUDIENCE: 37% ( 65-74); 28% (55-64); 23% (over 75); 12% (35-54)
One of the hallmarks of Writers' Theatre is intimacy, which plays heavily into our branding.
“ The 360 Experience”
Using aggressively cropped images and production photos gives our materials a consistent feel while also conveying a greater sense of who we are and what kind of experience they will have when they come to the theatre.
Such images trigger emotional responses – and we connect that response to the experience in the theatre
Our brand reflects the high-quality art that we produce. Whether is mentioned directly, as in our taglines from this season and next, "Experience the Best" or "Enter Excellence," or the quality of our work is reflected the care and precision we put into each piece we produce down to the paper choices. We aim to reinforce the high caliber of the art in all of our messaging.
This also helps to brand our two venues, which have an extremely limited availability and gives a greater sense of urgency to purchase tickets/subscriptions
Social media gives us the opportunity to engage in non-transactional ways with current and potential audiences, deepening our relationships with the public and further ingraining Writers' Theatre into their consciousness and gives them a reason to keep coming back to our website and social media outlets.
We have active Blog, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube accounts with over 800 Facebook fans and 700 Twitter followers.
We've launched a new program this season, TWEET SEATS, a day-of ticket discount program. Follow Writers' Theatre on Twitter (Twitter.com/WritersTheatre).
Everyday by 3pm, Writers' will Tweet a code that can be used to purchase remaining seats for that day’s performance at a discount. Tweet Seats are available for purchase only through the Writers' Theatre website at writerstheatre.org.
We have multiple Twitter accounts: @WritersTheatre, @kpuma, @stuartcarden
Through Twitter, I now have circles of interested parties all over the US (able to have conversations and share and respond immediately)
FROM PAGE TO STAGE is a very successful audience/community engagement program. Partnering with libraries across the North Shore, we have the opportunity to provide potential and current patrons with background information about a production to deepen their understanding of the play. It is offered free of charge and has grown over the last five years to include over 12 events in a six week period leading up to a production.
WHAT TO KNOW BEFORE THE SHOW gives audience members the opportunity to engage in a quick discussion
30 minutes before the performance to give them the necessary background information to get the most out of
POST-SHOW DISCUSSIONS: Led by a member of the artistic staff and joined by cast members, audiences can give feedback about the production directly after the performance and can be given the opportunity to discuss more challenging aspects of the piece.
Audiences feel like they know Michael and Kate and staff
Michael answers people's email and letters when they write in to comment on the shows (good or bad). That kind of recognition and making your audiences feel heard is what keeps them coming back, even if they didn’t like a production they saw
Directors meet with staff to discuss show
Michael meets with box office staff and house managers to discuss show
Involved in local community (holiday gatherings, Chamber of Commerce)
SURVEYS : Traditional surveys give us a baseline of demographics, use and media preferences. Next step: surveys that assess the audience's emotional response to the work, the theatre, the experience.
Questions are along the lines of whether audiences felt challenged, moved or engaged by the show and whether they noticed time passing during it, levels of interest in terms of themes, attitudes about new work, etc.
SECRET SHOPPER program designed to enhance customer service and satisfaction