My flyers for the Hollywood Fringe arrived today, courtesy of the incredibly fast and reasonably priced GotPrint.com. I’m glad to have them, because having some good quality flyers is a key component of promoting any show. Over the course of the last seven or eight shows I’ve produced, the strategy for handing out flyers has gradually evolved into:
Give a flyer to every human being you interact with in any way.
When you buy a cup of coffee, give a flyer to the barista. When you pay the bill at a restaurant, leave a flyer with the receipt. If someone asks you for directions on the train, help them out, and then give them a flyer. Cop pulls you over for speeding? Pay the fine, and give them a flyer.
Don’t hassle random strangers with unwanted advertising, but give a flyer to everyone you legitimately interact with.
Over the years this has led to various surprising people ending up in the audience. I’ve had my doctor turn up to more than one show, as well as my dentist along with about six people from his surgery. Apart from the fact that I genuinely enjoy seeing unexpected people I know in the crowd, every additional person helps get you closer to a sold-out show.
Of course, that only deals with giving flyers to people in person. There are also plenty of places worth leaving stacks of them, places where they can be stuck up on walls to function as mini-posters, and all kinds of tricks to using them with special deals to entice people to the show.
But in the meantime, I have to get promoting. I have seven shows to fill, and Twitter alone isn’t going to do the job. I’m heading out tonight to see some performances, meet some friends, and – politely and discretely of course – give everyone a flyer.
(Bonus easter egg for magician readers: the person on the balcony one the left side of the photo above is actually Shoot Ogawa, being amused at the lengths his assistant Sho and I were going to in order to take the photo.)