Contrary to the rosy picture some industries enjoy in this economy, performing arts organizations are struggling! They are struggling with being overworked, struggling to keep up consistent staffing, and struggling to maintain audience attendance. Why on earth would they want to continue with the arduous undertaking of printing paper program books?
Stretched Too Thin
As a recent Classical Voice article by Jim Farber points out, performing arts organizations are programming ambitious seasons in an effort to bring audiences back to pre-pandemic levels. Performers, organizers, and staff are then asked to step up and support these performances. The operations and logistics quickly become a nightmare when you factor in staff turnover and the struggle to hire new staff in today’s tight labor market. Farber notes that “organizations that laid off staff are discovering they may not be able to hire those people back because they found better, higher-paying jobs and they’re happier. Organizations are finding themselves trying to hire unicorns on a goat budget.” With their resources stretched so thin already, what performing arts organization has the luxury to dedicate staff to the labor-intensive, time-sucking, costly chore of developing and printing paper program books?
Digital Program Books and the New Publishing Model
If you think paper program books will help in your efforts to get audiences to return – and help pay for all those program books – think again! It’s time to pivot from that mindset of “We’ve always done it this way” to the New Publishing Model.
With digital program books, program book content and advertising content is easy to publish, maintain and update with just a few clicks. Need to make a last-minute change? A headache in the old paper program book world becomes no problem with digital program books. Add to that the ease of digital delivery, improved audience engagement, powerful click, and view tracking, and overall analytics, and you have a truly impressive model for program book publishing. And by following the New Publishing Model, you can still include a smaller publishing run of lightweight paper program books to satisfy patrons who still want the traditional experience without spending too much money or asking too much of your overworked staff.
Audience Access makes it easy and affordable for your organization to deal with staffing and cost challenges by adopting the New Publishing Model. Let us help you explore our broad range of solutions to help find the best plan for your needs.