Monthly Archives: December 2011

2011 – End of the year ADS news for future arts audience development

This will be my last post for 2011.  I am wrapping up my blog for this year to spend some time on getting my eBook published.  The next time you hear from me I will be announcing that the eBook is available for purchase.

2011 has been an amazing adventure for me and ADS.  I want to thank you for being a part of the journey this year.  I have had some huge successes and have learned from the few failures. For example, I have learned:

  • PowerPoint presentations are so last year.
  • You need to take care of yourself so you can take care of others efficiently.
  • Listening to your audiences gives you the best information for success.
  • It is good to plan yet appear spontaneous at the same time.  ;O)
  • Bringing focus to a goal with targeted time and effort works wonders!
  • Checking your ego at the door establishes the best foundation for beneficial collaborations.
  • Everyone has their own style, and it is best to work with others in accordance.
  • Ideas are born on their own time.  You can’t force something to happen, but if it is meant to be, it will happen soon.
  • Never get a major hair makeover before a big event.  Instead, allow months for a transition.
  • Everyone needs a support base, including me.

The good news is that I will be pressing on for another year with new services!

In 2012, I am starting a webinar series that will run every other month.  These 6 webinars will feature a guest speaker for a specific audience development topic in our arts industry.  The webinars will be co-produced by our new partner, Rosebrook Classical.   I hope you will join us for one of the first two webinars that are planned:

January 20th  – Noon ET
Participatory Classical Music
How can we build classical music experiences that will also build our audiences?  Participatory performances, designing events with your audience members, using music as a social force, nurturing your audiences, and increasing demand will all be discussed.

        

Shoshana Fanizza, Audience Development Specialists
Co-hosted with John Steinmetz
Co-produced with David Weuste, Rosebrook Classical

To Register: Click Here!

March 16th – Noon ET
Working with Mobile Technology to Develop Your Audience
With the rapid adoption of web-enabled cell phones, smartphones and tablet computers, what options are available to arts professionals who want to engage their audiences via mobile devices? How can artists and organizations implement these options cost effectively without taking focus away from the art?

        

Shoshana Fanizza, Audience Development Specialists
Co-hosted with David Dombrosky
Co-produced with David Weuste, Rosebrook Classical

To Register: Click Here!

Also in 2012, three new products will be born: Audience Development Projects, Audience Development Groups and Blog Subscribers Q&A Forum.

Audience Development Projects will be projects that will target specific audience development issues.  Artists and arts organizations can “invest” in these projects by signing up (shared fee for my time), and grants will be sought out to cover any of the other costs for the project.  As a group, working with me to spearhead, we will be creating a plan for each artist and arts organization for developing their audiences in accordance with the particular challenge.  Group conference calls/webmeetings will be scheduled, and follow up discussions and surveys to track progress will be planned as well.

Audience Development Groups is a more casual group program.  For a small monthly fee, artists and arts organizations can sign up for a group.  Your group will consist of 10 people.  During the months time, everyone in the group will be able to bring forward a particular audience development challenge, and the group will help you brainstorm solutions.   Four weekly group conference calls/webmeetings will be scheduled, and follow up discussions and surveys to track progress will be planned as well.

Blog Subscribers Q&A Forum is a thank you gift for my blog subscribers.  If you want to be a part of this group, all you have to do is subscribe to this blog.  I want to ask my subscribers at this time to start sending me questions for discussion.  I will choose particular questions, one per week, and I will do a Cinchcast (mini-podcast) or a vlog (video blog) to answer these questions.  Again, only subscribers, people that are on my subscribers list, will be eligible to participate.

Last, but not least for 2012, we are working on regional workshops that will cover specific issues for each region.  Currently, a California workshop tour is in the works for late April: L.A., San Jose, and Sacramento.  I have hopes that Chicago, Portland, and Austin or Houston will be added to the roster.

Please stay tuned for the launch of these new and important programs. 

We will be continuing the services that have been established in 2011, including the majority of our free services, such as the weekly blog posts, audience development tip of the day Cinchcasts, ADS ARTicles on Twitter, quarterly e-Newsletter, and daily Facebook page posts.

2012 holds a great deal of promise for ADS and for audience development.  I wish you and yours all the best for a very prosperous New Year!

Cheers to happy and loyal audiences,
Shoshana

Shoshana Fanizza

Audience Development Specialists

http://www.buildmyaudience.com

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“Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.”
~James Stewart

Although we are not a non-profit, if you would like to support ADS to continue our work, you can donate here.

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Become an audience development agent -11 gifts to help artists this holiday season

Happy Hanukkah and Happy Holidays to all!   This holiday season, I have been challenging my Twitter and Facebook friends to buy responsibly this year.  I am a firm believer that if you want change to happen in our world, we need to start voting with our money every day.  This means that we need to make better choices as to where we place our money.  Instead of buying at a big box that lines the pockets of corporate CEOs that don’t need the money, consider buying with F.A.C.E. values: Fair trade, American/Artist made, Charities paid, and Environment saved.  This means that you will need to be more aware about who is behind the products you are buying and who is behind the stores you purchase from.

One great way to ensure that your money is going directly to real people is to buy from artists.  Here are 11 ways you can become an audience development agent for the arts by purchasing directly from artists:

1. Find your local arts and crafts galleries – You can purchase charming one-of-a-kind gifts at your local arts and crafts galleries, and the money goes to the artists that made the art.

2. Buy music on CD Baby – CD Baby has a bunch of cd’s from indie artists.  Their database can lead you to local musicians or music of a particular genre.

3. Purchase tickets or gift certificates to a local arts company – Instead of buying cheaply made stuff from China, why not purchase an experience for your friends and family. Whether they like music, art, dance, theatre, there is sure to be a local event that they will enjoy.  This can include tickets to a performance or a gift certificate for a workshop to teach them how to be an artist.  Remember, the Chinese product will fall apart in a few years, but the memory of the arts experience will last a lifetime.

4. Commission artwork just for them – There are many artists that can do a piece especially for you and your loved ones.  If you have admired the art of an artist, find out if you can commission a special artwork piece this season.

5. Hire artists for your special holiday party this year – Nothing comes close to live art.  You can hire a small music group, a few artists, or actors to provide entertainment for your holiday party.  Your holiday party will become a prized event for years to come!

6. Buy on Etsy this season –  There are tons of artists from around the world that supply affordable arts and crafts on Etsy.  Each purchase will help support an artist.

7. Bring-a-friend to a performance or workshop – This is similar to purchasing tickets or gift certificates, but instead, you are enjoying the experience with your friends and family. Again, the memories that result are priceless!

8. Frame them this season – I happen to be someone that purchases art, but I usually have several pieces that are in need of framing.  I can’t be the only one.  If you know someone like me, offer to frame their art this season so they can start enjoying their artwork.

9. If your friends and family members like worldly gifts, buy Fair Trade items this year – If you Google “Fair Trade Artisans,” you will find a variety of Fair Trade sites where you can purchase well-intentioned gifts.  The purchases help people from all over the world who have hand crafted gifts with love and care.  Ten  Thousand Villages is one of the finds on this Google search and looks to have some amazing gifts!

10. Do you have a special photograph of a memory, loved one, or cherished family pet?  There are many artists that can turn your photograph into a work of art. Ask your local Arts Alliance for help in finding an artist, or look for local workshops that teach you how to do it yourself!

11. Hire a photographer to do a special photo shoot for your holiday gathering – We may think we know how to take a picture, but there are talented photographers in your area that will turn your memories into artistic memories.

Cheers to happy and loyal audiences,
Shoshana

Shoshana Fanizza

Audience Development Specialists

http://www.buildmyaudience.com

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The Quarterly E-Newsletter is scheduled to go out next week!  Sign-up for ADS’ E-Mazing Audience Development newsletter soon.

“Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.”
~James Stewart

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Top 10 Blogging Tips for audience development

Last night I went to an Advanced Blogging class hosted by Boulder Digital Arts.   Our instructor, Beth Hayden, aka local blogging guru, gave us many pointers for producing a more popular blog.  Some were good reminders for me, but a few suggestions were new.  I won’t give away all the details since you had to be there, but I do want to share a few tips that had me thinking.

  1. Spend time on your headlines.  You want your headlines to pop and be attractive for people to click on.  They can have a keyword or use one of the formulas for attracting attention: list headlines (odd numbers are best or top 10), how to titles, guide titles (Guide to…), Warning/Alert titles (The 7 Warning Signs…).
  2. In some blogging software, you can create your own page (post) url, which is also called a permalink, but you want to do this before you publish.  Make sure it is memorable and keyword friendly.
  3. Make your email subscribers feel special by emailing them once in a while with an offer just for them.  I loved this idea.  If you are reading this via email, do not be surprised if I send a little special something.  If you would like to be included in receiving the little special something:  You can subscribe here!
  4. Create incentives to get people to subscribe to your blog.  You can create a free download to get people to sign up. I’m not too thrilled with pop-ups, but these can work if not too obnoxious.
  5. Be sure to use your RSS feed to hook your blog to other outlets.  Most social media has the option of sharing your blog this way.
  6. Comment on other people’s posts and include the link to your blog.  Link love can do amazing things. Also, make sure you comment back in a timely fashion to the people that take the time to reply to your posts.
  7. Ask to guest blog on other blogs that make sense for attracting new audiences.  Be sure to research and spend some time looking at their blog content.  Figure out which posts are the most popular.  If you find a good fit, you can contact the owner and submit a few headlines and samples of your writing.  Don’t take it personally if they reject your idea or if they do not get back to you.  A softer way of doing this is to ask your friends that have blogs to do a blog post swap.  This way, you can help build both your audiences.
  8. If you ever wonder about making money via your blog, ad programs are not the best route.  Instead, develop products (eBooks for example), look for affiliation opportunities (choose products that are a good match), and offer your services as a public speaker on your topic.
  9. Register on blog directories such as Technorati.  You can google “blog directories,” and a bunch of other options show up.
  10. Use Google Adwords to find the best keywords and then use these for SEO.

Beth went into detail on each of these points.  She also talked about some other ideas that were fabulous.  Again, you had to be there.  I do recommend signing up for her blog.  She’s one smart cookie!

The one thing we did not discuss was how to get more people to comment.  I would say that compelling, quality content helps boost comments.  What do you think?

Cheers to happy and loyal audiences,
Shoshana

Shoshana Fanizza

Audience Development Specialists

http://www.buildmyaudience.com

FacebookTwitterLinkedin

The Quarterly E-Newsletter is scheduled to go out in two weeks!  Sign-up for ADS’ E-Mazing Audience Development newsletter soon.

“Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.”
~James Stewart

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50 Winning Tweets from the 2011 NAMPC (many about audience development)

There are still some tweets and such floating around after the National Arts Marketing Project Conference – Winning Audiences.  Today I saw another tweet about the 50 Winning Tweets from the 2011 NAMPC.  I not only enjoyed the collection of tweets, but the format via Issuu, a free online publication program, is worth the mention too.

Enjoy!

Click Here to view what I am talking about!

Cheers to happy and loyal audiences,
Shoshana

Shoshana Fanizza

Audience Development Specialists

http://www.buildmyaudience.com

FacebookTwitterLinkedin

The Quarterly E-Newsletter is scheduled to go out in two weeks!  Sign-up for ADS’ E-Mazing Audience Development newsletter soon.

“Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.”
~James Stewart

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Filed under arts management, arts marketing, Audience Development, fund raising, Fundraising, Online fund raising, Online fundraising

Audience development and combatting the “elitism” of the arts

I just finished reading

Classical music ain’t just for snobs

When I saw the title, I was expecting an article detailing the various reasons why classical music can be enjoyed by everyone and anyone.  I should have known better.  It turned out to be another critical essay regarding the format of how someone is presenting classical music to the masses.  On the one hand, the message is clear, and the article is worth reading.  On the other hand, this essay was written in such a fashion that the average person would probably not read it.

I read it, but I am not the average person that does not know about classical music.  I was born and raised into the world of classical music.  If I hadn’t been, I may not have been interested in this article.

Is this what we have come to?  We are critical of each other in our attempts to get classical music out to the general public, and yet, we end up speaking to ourselves and talking in circles.  I am currently picking on the classical music world, but the arts in general have had a big fail in communicating to the general public in ways the general public can understand.

It is not a matter of “dumbing down.”  I really don’t like this phrase.  Instead, we need to think about the fact that people that have not been in touch with classical music may not understand our jargon.  This creates a barrier that doesn’t need to be there.  It is a matter of getting real about the music again so we can explain in ways that will be understood by people that are new to classical music.

Let me put it this way, if a mathematician were to go through one of his detailed proofs to show you the glories of math, and you were not at his level, wouldn’t you be completely lost, bored, turned off?

It is time we start communicating again with the general public.  We can do this in smart ways (no dumbing down required).  Currently, there are children’s programs that do a fantastic job.  Why not translate the basic concepts of these formats for adults too?   I will say here, in defense, that I have seen a few programs that are starting to do this.  I look forward to the day it is more standard in our industry.

Classical music (art in general) will continue to be considered “elite” until we allow ourselves to let our hair down.  Plus, the music will speak for itself, if we can stop speaking for it.

Cheers to happy and loyal audiences,
Shoshana

Shoshana Fanizza

Audience Development Specialists

http://www.buildmyaudience.com

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PS – Sign up for ADS E-News today!  We are promoting a special for our e-Newsletter subscribers tomorrow.

“Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.”
~James Stewart

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