Been to a Show Lately? The Flynn Wants to Hear About It | Economy | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Seven Days needs your financial support!

Been to a Show Lately? The Flynn Wants to Hear About It 

State of the Arts

Surveymonkey is popping up all over these days. And no wonder: The online tool is a handy way for those with a modicum of web savvy to design and analyze their own surveys — for free. For anyone who needs to find out what their customers, clients, patrons or friends are thinking, it’s a godsend.

Even so, Flynn Center subscribers may have been a little surprised to receive a sudden invitation to this year.

Since January, Flynn marketing director Leigh Chandler has been emailing ticket holders after every show they attend, asking them to click a link and answer a few questions. “We wanted to get feedback on what people think of our shows — and to get a handle on who the audience is, too,” she explains. “We sort of guess at who’s coming to which genre.”

Soliciting reactions to a performance helps the Flynn decide whether to bring back the show, or something like it. Basic demographic data on audiences — such as gender, age and income bracket — also help Chandler target her marketing more effectively. Specifically, she hopes to “send out fewer pieces to the people most likely to buy” rather than bombarding everyone with repeat announcements of each show. Sending fewer mailers is more eco-friendly — and, more to the point, cost-effective. Especially during an economic downturn, arts organizations need to conserve every penny.

So far, a satisfying number of patrons have answered Chandler’s questions, even though “there’s no incentive,” she points out. “Anything over 25 percent is good, but we’re getting as much as 50, 75 percent.” She notes people generally “seem happy to share what they think.”

While most of the feedback has been favorable, people do sometimes send negative comments. “Not everyone understood Cirque Eloize,” Chandler admits of the somewhat Fellini-esque show Nebbia, performed last month by Montréal’s circus-arts group. The Flynn might think twice about booking Eloize again, she says, “or at least think about how we market them.”

Chandler notes that the demographics for certain shows are predictable, but she’s most interested in examining “the cross-genre stuff.” Say, females of a certain age and income who like fado, Shakespeare and puppets? Good luck analyzing that data.

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

About The Author

Pamela Polston

Pamela Polston

Pamela Polston is a cofounder and the Art Editor of Seven Days. In 2015, she was inducted into the New England Newspaper Hall of Fame.


Comments are closed.

Since 2014, Seven Days has allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we’ve appreciated the suggestions and insights, the time has come to shut them down — at least temporarily.

While we champion free speech, facts are a matter of life and death during the coronavirus pandemic, and right now Seven Days is prioritizing the production of responsible journalism over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor. Or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2022 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401

Advertising Policy  |  Privacy Policy  |  Contact Us  |  About Us  |  Help
Website powered by Foundation