Maison de la Poésie: diversify your audiences and strengthen the relational experience with the spectators

Diversify your audiences and strengthen the relational experience with the spectators

In this more than special cultural season, we wanted to meet the people who do everything possible to ensure that the public finds its way back to cultural venues.

First stop Passage Molière in Paris where Armelle Stepien (AS), Public Relations Manager, and Sarah Le Lay (SLL), Public Relations Officer, develop the link between a unique literary scene and its eclectic audience.

How would you introduce la Maison de la Poésie (House of Poetry) to someone who has never been there?

AS: In the first place, the House of Poetry is a literary scene. And who says literary stage immediately highlights the question of scenic orality. We are also talking about a place giving a voice to authors like no other in Paris. What is interesting in our artistic project is to to bring literature to life in a different way through the incarnation on stage but also through a hybridization of genres, because we like to bring together a text and a completely different genre (graphic art, music...). It is a positioning that generates new encounters between artists, with the desire for us to bring together well-known artists and others who are emerging. All the actors of literature can find their place within the Maison de la Poésie.

How do you see the start of the fall 2021 season, what will be your major highlights?

AS: At the moment we have good attendance rates and we are optimistic. Some evenings are sold out. However, we remain vigilant because other events are still looking for their audience and they tend to book at the last minute. As far as highlights are concerned, we will be following the new literary season. We will be introducing new books through readings and musical encounters. I would also mention the festival Paris en toutes lettres an off-site event that will take place in November.

What if you were to recommend a particular event?

AS: I recommend Marie Darrieussecq's reading on 20 September, around the release of her book Not Sleepingin which she talks about insomnia as her best companion!

SLL: And literary naps too, for a gentle recovery. Beautiful moments with music and a writer to accompany it.

Let's talk about your audiences. Who are the House's audiences and what are your main objectives in terms of development?

AS: The House's audiences are eclectic. We have aficionados, loyal visitors who come very frequently. But also more volatile audiences, curious 40-50 year olds, who come according to the theme. And young people, whom we don't know well enough and with whom we want to develop a link.

On thedevelopment sideThe challenge is not so much to fill our theatres, as we have an average attendance rate of 85%. We are focused on three areas: diversification, building loyalty and mediation towards specific audiences.

First of all,
diversification and circulation of audiences. We notice that we bring in a variety of audiences but that they sometimes tend to come to the same type of event. The eclectic and abundant programming of the Maison de la Poésie can make them want to come more often. In this, Arenametrix allows us to work on the development of a relational policy based on recommendation.

Secondly, loyalty. For this, we have traditional tools such as membership, through which we offer preferential rates to our audiences. But we want to go further, by creating a community. We want to develop a stronger relational link. The marketing automation module offered by Arenametrix, for example, can help us to go in this direction by instituting practical information messages, but also more editorialised one-off content.

In addition, we work a lot on mediation and the development of the social and educational sector.

You have been working with Arenametrix for more than 4 years, what were your objectives at the beginning of our collaboration?

AS: We had then and still have a ticketing software with CRM functions but we had difficulties to really use it as a contact file directory. We wanted to centralise all our files and data and create a common directory, accessible to all teams. We could have done it in our ticketing software but we were looking for a more intuitive tool, easy to use and in which all the professions of the Maison de la Poésie could collaborate. In summary, we started working with Arenametrix to centralise our data, but now that this is done, we want to focus more on developing a personal relationship with our audience.

You have just started to use the new marketing automation module from Arenametrix, how will you use it?

SLL: Yes, we have many plans to become more efficient and to strengthen our relationship with the audience. We want to accompany them more closely in their journey, from the pre-show to their arrival, and make them want to come back .

One last question: you set up an ambitious streaming programme during the lockdowns. What is your assessment of this operation and how do you see the future?

SLL: Yes, indeed. What has helped us a lot is that thanks to investments made before the crisis, the institution was already ready and was able to move towards this activity. For the future, everything is under consideration, we want to continue, while maintaining a real quality of proposals. We have included our video content in our digital environment thanks to a "Digital stage" tab on our website.

Would you like to know more about the steps and results of the collaboration between Arenametrix and the Maison de la Poésie?

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Solène Jimenez

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Apolline Locquet

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