One way to get audiences to come back.

One of the most fun and educational initiatives we did on Godspell was our Creator’s Commentary.  We got Stephen Schwartz and helmer Danny Goldstein to watch the show, and comment on how it all came together, as the show was happening in the background (You can listen to it here, btw, or even download it from iTunes so you can listen to it while you Zumba or P90X!)

Obviously this idea was based on the popular DVD Commentary that comes with most movies these days as an added value when you purchase the DVD.

Well, the writer-director of the still-in-movie-theaters Looper (who is also the genie-genius behind the camera of Breaking Bad) just raised the bar . . . and figured out a simple way to go beyond “added value.”

Rian Johnson, said writer-director, created an audio commentary track for his film that you can download for free NOW, before the DVD even comes out.  And he recommends you toss it on your ol’ iPod, and head back to the movie theater to see his flick again.  And when the credits role?  Hit play, and start your popcorn.

To recap:

Movie + Commentary = A New Experience for the Audience + and A Few More Bucks for Rian Johnson

Read all about it here.

Getting people to pay to experience live entertainment a second time, especially one that doesn’t change like a movie, or a musical, is super challenging, especially with our high cost barrier.  In our biz, the biggest marketing shtick we have to get someone to come back is a cast change.  So, I usually recommend you spend the majority of your marketing energies getting the people that have come to see your show to get other people to come and see your show, not to get them to come again (Work on word of mouth, not on return visitors).  Because it’s just too hard.

But Rian reminds us not to ignore the idea of return visitors completely.  Providing the small segment of your audience that are the super fans with extra value content may not only get them back, but it just may make them sing about your show a little louder to all their friends.


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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.