In past years, we ran a Cyber Monday membership sale. Because of what we’ve been talking about in these meetings, we decided to run a membership special throughout September and October instead of just focusing on Cyber Monday. We had a 4.2% response rate with27% member renewals during this period at an 18% cost. This is excellent for us; we are thrilled with the results.


We took a multi-tiered approach to our supporters who have contributed for 5+ years (donors and season ticket holders.)  First, we sent a special offer that slashed rates on our annual fund levels “if they would commit now.”  We included an offer to have coffee with one of our staff; 15 people have taken us up on that offer to have coffee and the majority have brought checks with them!  Overall, our campaign was very successful and we intend to continue to follow the “patron ladder” model to more success! 

We’ve also organized our overall strategy so that the marketing department works to upgrade single ticket buyers to multiple-ticket buyers and after they become multiple-ticket buyers for a period of time, then we begin to cultivate them as donors in addition to selling tickets to them. This is working much better and we are having success with the approach.


We’re learning to “stop and assess.” We are looking at everything we do under the lens of “does it help us to build or increase loyalty from our audience?”  One example is our curtain speeches. Administrators used to do the curtain speeches; we changed this to having our actors and dancers do the curtain speech. The first night we did this we got $600 in additional donations, the second night $2,000. This momentum has continued. We get it!


To figure out why we weren’t collecting data from our ticket purchasers, I hung out at the box office to see how they were handling phone sales. I learned that the staff were not doing it properly; as a result, we had a training session about what information we need to capture from our ticket buyers, e.g. “we need ALL of the information fields in the software filled in, not just name!”  It is going much better and we are capturing more information, resulting in an increase in ticket sales.


We are working on “radical hospitality” and being more welcoming to every person who comes through our front door.  We speak to each person, get his or her contact information, and ask for a donation above the admission fee. This has been very successful and we are going to continue to train our staff to engage with our visitors in the hope that we can move them up the “patron ladder.”

Synchronicity Theatre

What have you heard today that you need to try to do in your organization?

  • New tactics for soft nights.
  • For Wednesday, and Industry night has increased attednance from 24 to 93 people in just 3 weeks.
  • For Friday Family Nights, changed it to PJs and cookies and milk. Has gonne from 25-110 people in three weeks.

What are some of the things you've done this last season?

  • We are doing a better job of getting the right programming mix in place, and far enough ahead of time to implement.
  • Data Mining is a challenge - have good data, but need  to take the time to analyze it.
  • We could do a better job communicating to our audiences.

Key words

  • Programming Mix
  • Data Mining
  • Segmenting communication by audience


What have you heard today that you need to try to do in your organization?

  • We have learned that we need to be more strategic with social media, and that we cannot focus on all the social media platforms.  Since 80% of our new sales come from Facebook, we will focus our marketing efforts there. And we are delegating the Instagram and interest activity to the dancers. 


  • Facebook, Delegation

High Museum of Art

What are some of the things you've done this last season?

  • We've been focusing on families with free admission on the 2nd Sunday of each month.  The audience is larger and there is more data, but no one is tracking their return attendance, or if they become members.  We need a marketing plan specifically for this audience.
  • We want to try an "art box' program for the families that attend on second Sundays, where they will get incentivized with additional art supplies when they return on days that are not the Second Sunday - to encourage repeat visits.


  • Free admission, Conversion from free to paid, marketing plan
  • Incentivizing

Georgia Symphony

What have you heard today that you need to try to do in your organization?

  • The importance of creating and sharing an experience.

What are some of the things you've done this last season?

  • We created a VIP experience for the GSO Dads Concert.  It was an $11 add-on to raise the price from $29 to $30.  VIP only reception afterwards to meet the musicians, and prime preserved seats.  Sold 28 additionaltickets and had to add a row.


  • Backstage access, VIP, Increase ticket price
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