The single most effective tool that helped my one-woman show throughout its journey from stage to bigger stage to film, etc. has been Word of Mouth. You can publicize until you’re flat broke, take out ads, mail out a jillion flyers, email the planet, but in my experience nothing worked better than People Other Than Me telling their friends, “Dude, seriously, you gotta see this show.”
Here are some ways you can capitalize on word of mouth.
Email List/Guest Book
Gather email addresses before and especially after the show. As people are leaving the theater, hit them up for their email address. They are your Warm Leads, and since they’ve seen and loved the show, you can email them with future performance announcements and ask them to tell their friends. Just having a guest book and a sign is great, but what’s even better is to have someone standing in the lobby actively requesting people’s email addresses.
I first saw this at the Greenway Court Theater, and I’ve been using it ever since. As I left the theater after seeing a show, they had a big sign, prominently placed that said, “Theater Lives by Word-of-Mouth, please spread the word about our show.” And alongside the sign was a giant stack of postcards. Make it easy for people to share your goodies.
Have an online presence – FaceTubes, Twaddle, a webpage for your show, one or all the social media type sites. Then your fans have somewhere to send their friends electronically. Make your show easy to find!
Make a trailer for your show. Yeah, just like a movie trailer, the way it sucks you in and make you want to see the movie. You can do the same thing with your show. Perhaps you video select bits from your show, in a theater or on location. Or, if that’s not possible, how about a charming on-camera bit, just you talking into the camera? Get creative about making something that entices people to want to see more of you, and can be easily shared by word of mouth. “Dude, you gotta see this show.” “Oh, yeah?” “Yeah. Check out the trailer.” “Cool!”
With great love,