Paging Dr. House to the theater . . . stat.
I love me some House.
Maybe it’s because he reminds me a bit of my Dad (Dad’s a doctor who admittedly has been a bit nasty to a few nurses in his day).
Or maybe it’s because I like his style . . . it reminds me of how a great marketer works.
When House has a new patient presenting symptoms, he treats with the broadest and least invasive techniques first . . . then he stands back and watches how the body responds. If that doesn’t cure the ailment, he tries something a bit more creative. And if that doesn’t work, he goes at it with something totally different. And if that doesn’t work, he tries something else, and so on, and so on, until he finally cracks it and save the poor bleeding bastard’s life.
When a great marketer gets a new show, they usually start with a broader advertising campaign that features the tried and true techniques that have worked for the most shows. After that launch, he watches how the market responds. If the initial launch doesn’t work, he tries something different. And if that doesn’t work, he tries something else, and so on, and so on, and so on, until the right medicine stops the bleeding at the box office.
No two shows are alike. And just because one treatment or plan doesn’t work, doesn’t mean another won’t. The point is to keep trying. Keep coming up with ideas. And if you’ve gotta go experimental, then go for it.
Because if theater means as much to you as it does to me, then keeping a show going may not be life or death, but it sure feels pretty close, doesn’t it?
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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.