‘Lion King’ Atop Broadway’s Circle of Life

By 2010 Disney stopped the traditional strategy of charging one price for whole sections of seats; instead, the producers raised prices for busy weeks by making predictions based on “Lion King” data. A new interactive seating map allowed people to pick locations, and they often opted for better, pricier ones, Disney executives said. The introduction of the algorithm, as well as heavy advertising, caused grosses to surge further. This March “The Lion King” has been grossing $1.5 million a week.
Ticket Pricing Puts ‘Lion King’ Atop Broadway’s Circle of Life – NYTimes.com.

This is a great article by Patrick Healey in the Times. What I find so fascinating about this is that most producers aren’t doing what Disney is doing: pricing houses dynamically. Instead, they are relying on old, old models that sell tickets but do nothing to develop their audience.

The idea that charging more in the short term is going to make you more money in the long term is utter folly, but likely is something born of the experience of the old white-haired guys with the money.

Back in the mists of time, before computerized tickets and demographic algorithms, I did this kind of stuff the old timey way: with pencils and big sheets of paper. And maps. It made sense to me then; it makes so much more sense to me now as we have such fabulous technology.

No one else may have the resources that Disney has, but there’s no reason — besides stupidity and the unwillingness to embrace new things — that everyone should not be doing this. Why? Because, if you are a marketer: it’s your job!

Hakuna matata.

Seth’s Blog: Trapped by tl;dr

Seth’s Blog: Trapped by tl;dr.

Judging by length is foolish. TL;DR shows self-contempt, because you’re ignoring the useful in exchange for the short or the amusing. The media has responded to our demand by giving us a rising tide of ever shorter, ever more amusing wastes of time. Short lowers the bar, but it also makes it hard to deliver much.

Please, give me something long (but make it worth my time.)

Perhaps a new acronym: NW;DR (not worthwhile; didn’t read) makes more sense. We’ve got plenty to choose from, but what we need is content that’s worth the effort.

What I love about reading Seth Godin is that it’s like listening to the voices in my head. Simply going short is not going to get your product sold, your awareness built or your mischief managed. It’s just going to be short. It’s just going to be something else to skip over.

Parenthetically, Godin says make it worth my time. That’s the crux of it all. Make me want to read. After all, we are supposedly in the business of communicating. Surely, we understand how to make people read what we write. Right?

8 Hacks to Make Google Calendar More Useful

Okay, this one is pretty good. Some of it is hokum, but some of these ideas really are good project/life management shortcuts. Consolidating your many life calendars into one is a good thing. I dunno about sending an invite to your date, though. Could just be I’m too old school for that!

via 8 Hacks to Make Google Calendar More Useful.

20% of Americans Can’t Access Facebook at Work

American employers who block websites in an attempt to boost productivity at work are most likely to start with Facebook. One in five Americans can’t access the social media site while at work.

Twitter is a close second, with 15.1% reportedly blocking the site.

via 20% of Americans Can’t Access Facebook at Work.|Mashable

I guess I should be shocked by this. I certainly see how management (other unenlightened managers, thus excluding myself!) could see all social media as a giant time suck, but, for me, and for others that must react to news and perceptions during the day, it’s simply essential that we’re plugged in all the time. #getwiththeprogram

How To Prove You’re Not A Racist

How To Prove You’re Not A Racist : Code Switch : NPR

“I work with the wrongly accused,” he [Dan Hill, president of the D.C. communications firm Ervin/Hill Strategy] says, as well as “people who know they made a mistake and want to fix it, and others that see a mistake on the horizon that might become public and want to make sure they handle it the right way.”

But Hill says most clients who first come for his aid fall into one big category: the drowning victim, panicked and flailing for help. Often his first advice to them is to breathe, literally.

“We’ve all experienced the anxiety of making a mistake,” he says. “Few of us have felt having that mistake broadcast to hundreds of millions of people and how that makes you feel.”

Deen seemed to be drowning in her own tears by the end of her appearance on NBC’s Today show, her first public interview after controversy erupted over her using the N-word.

Hill says there’s no silver bullet to fix Deen’s situation.

“I think I’m one of the best in my field. I can’t help her get out of this in a week,” he says. “This is the kind of thing that will maybe take years — decades — for her to overcome.”

The timing for recovery from a race-related controversy is especially tricky, Hill says, because “it has to do with your character, your values, and your belief systems.”

Yes, but.

Paula Deen’s situation is a “yes, but” because it’s all taken completely out of context. You must read the deposition that all of this is coming from — the whole thing. Google it.

There’s no question that she did not handle this well. At all. But it’s low-hanging fruit for the 24/7/365 media machine, so why not? Why not talk about Paula Deen and butter and grits and saying the N-word instead of talking about substantive news? You know, like climate change or Syria or DOMA or how many Congressional representatives Monsanto has on its payroll.

Here’s my initial take on it, y’all.

And here’s the HILARIOUS Bill Burr on Conan. A great take on the whole business.

Seths Blog: Hoarding information

head-clickme21If your project or organization depends on knowing things that other people dont know but could find out if they wanted to, your days are probably numbered. Ask a travel agent.Agents and brokers of any kind, in fact. Anyone who thrives when people are in the dark is in ever more danger of working in the bright light of transparent information.

via Seths Blog: Hoarding information.

As ever. Mr. Godin serves up the truth cleanly and eloquently.

Seth Godin: Lead up

Seth’s Blog: Lead up.

A great designer gets great clients because she deserves them. One of the ways that she became a great designer was by leading her clients to make good decisions, to have better taste, to understand her insight and have the guts to back it. That doesn’t happen randomly. It happens when someone leads up.

As per usual, more brilliance from Mr. Godin. Read it.

Seth Godin on Critics – Brilliant Essay

head-clickme2From the supple mind of the great Seth Godin. This is a piece ostensibly about going to the theatre, but what it really is is a fascinating piece of marketing rhetoric.

If you have a product that people are talking about, who do you believe? The users of the product? Or those paid by a third-party to “review” your product?

This is a debate that has been going on for years and years and years and we won’t solve the riddle here, but it’s certainly worth spending a few moments thinking on it.

Seth’s Blog: The critic stumbles.

Have you noticed just how often the critics disagree with one another? And how often they’re just wrong?

And yet we not only read them, but we believe them. Worse, we judge ourselves, contrasting our feelings with their words. Worse still, we sometimes think we hear the feared critic’s voice before we even ship our work out the door…

For me, the opinion of any single critic is becoming less and less meaningful as I choose what to view or engage with. And the aggregate opinion of masses of anonymous critics merely tells me that the product or content is (or isn’t) mass-friendly. I’m far more moved by the insistent recommendation of a credible, raving fan than I am the snide whispering of some people who just didn’t get it.