In the future will people want to passively sit and watch someone else’s vision without having the chance to respond, interact, re-interpret or challenge? What does that mean for the arts, where the artists vision is often sacrosanct, even if funded by the masses?
In the arts sector we are fortunate to have passionate, dedicated audiences that are committed consumers. We should not take that relationship for granted. We should also not underestimate how rare that type of relationship is. In that case, does freeness devalue the arts unnecessarily? (Did A Night Less Ordinary actually work?)
In the arts sector every marketing survey cites that old favourite, word of mouth, as the big influencer on attendance. Increasingly that word of mouth will come through social networking and may even come from people you do not personally know (Gok Wan, Stephen Fry, Charlie Sheen!). The percentage of the public citing word of mouth as the reason they came to your show can only increase as we become more connected. We will all need break that answer down in detail to develop effective strategies for communication.