Some of you may know that one of my cats is very ill. I have been back and forth to the vet many times in the past two weeks. Both me and my cat are tired of the whole thing. During the process, I realized that I am incorporating much of the advice I give to my clients for the 4th C of audience development, or the Care element of their plans.
- I want to make my cat as comfortable as possible during this time. I put an extra special soft blanket in her carrier to make the travels a little bit better for her.
What are you doing to make your patrons more comfortable during their experience with you?
- Her problem right now is not being able to keep food down. I am buying medicines and foods to help calm her stomach.
What changes are you making to solve any problems your patrons are “ailing” from?
- At the vet she sat in the corner, tired from the entire ordeal. Today, I am “hearing” that she needs a little bit of time before another round of medications begin.
Are you listening to what your audiences prefer? What are you doing to accommodate their schedule, their needs?
- I was rewarded this morning when she began to eat a good breakfast. After weeks of not being able to keep her food down, she seems to be doing a little better. She purred when I pet her too.
Caring for your audiences will have their rewards. They will want to give back if you cater and care for them.
- I know that I will have to make decisions that will benefit her even if she doesn’t take to it from the start. What makes this easier is her trust in me.
If you care for your audiences, over time, they will start to trust your judgement even if they don’t completely agree with you.
- My cat has been with me for 14 years. I couldn’t imagine my life without her.
Just like a relationship with a pet, your relationships with your audiences can be loyal and long lasting if you keep caring for them throughout the relationship.
Which brings me to the moral of this little cat tale (and tail). If you care for your audiences through every experience with them, they will become happy and loyal audience members. They will want to support you since they now know that you care for them too. In the end, you can’t imagine your life without an audience, and when you care enough, they will not be able to imagine a life without you and your art.
Cheers to happy and loyal audiences,
Audience Development Specialists
“Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.”
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