At Onstage we value our performance art partners and the venues we serve; that’s why we provide them with the finest in program book publishing. Every artist and group we work with has a unique voice that needs to be presented in their own special way. Our luxury program books reflect this, as do the venues which house them.

The Music Center at Strathmore is home to The National Philharmonic and we believe this venue to be a modern treasure that D.C. residents can be proud of! We admire how the Strathmore hosts world-class performers from all over the globe. Furthermore, we love The National Philharmonic and Strathmore for their combined community involvement, but we especially admire their dedication to D.C. area youth.

About The National Philharmonic, Their Focus on Youth Programs

Going beyond the usual music student lectures and special ticket prices for college students, The National Philharmonic offers a community program that blows our minds! It’s called…

ALL Kids, All Free, All The Time

Yes, you read that right. All children ages 7 – 17 get into the Music Center at Strathmore free of charge for National Philharmonic performances. Strathmore staffers certainly don’t have anything against the littlest children, it’s just that symphony performances are probably not the best choice for their entertainment.

We think it’s fantastic that young people can attend world-class orchestra performances for literally nothing.

Color The Music Projects

Every fall, the National Philharmonic @ Strathmore also works with schools to provide D.C. area children with a chance to get hands-on with performance art and music they might not otherwise have access to. The focus of 2019 is the music of legendary disco artists ABBA.

Students begin by listening to beloved disco classics like:

Students are encouraged then to color and paint 9″ x 12″ durable paper, and to be creative with brushes and even marbles, to bring the music of ABBA to life in their own artistic way. Other types of art are encouraged too, even fashion design, to help students participate in music of ABBA with whatever tangible media they prefer.

A Rocky Year of Rebirth in 2019

It needs to be mentioned that the National Philharmonic has struggled financially in recent years, and it’s only with massive crowdfunding campaigns and volunteer labor that the organization can proceed.

NBC News reported in August, 2019 that the National Philharmonic is able to move forward with their 2019 programming because two dedicated maestros and the new interim president have agreed to work for free for the next 12 months.

  • Local businessman and philanthropist Jim Kelly has donated a year of service as president, which will save the organization about $95,000.
  • The two maestros Piotr Gajewski and Stan Engebretson followed suit.

The National Philharmonic was quite close to closing it’s doors in 2019 due to lack of funding after the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County decreased its funding by more than $150,000 since 2011 per NBC.

About the Venue: Strathmore

Per their website “High-quality arts programming, designed for audiences of many tastes, served with the hospitality and warmth of a family enterprise, are the hallmarks of Strathmore.” Three venues live under the Strathmore umbrella: The Music Center, The Mansion and it’s newest 250 seat venue AMP, which offers more of a jazzy lounge appeal.

We appreciate their seasonal outdoor performing arts events, because they seek to be inclusive, and reach out to people of all ages, interests, and backgrounds.

Program book advertising with Onstage is a way to get your brand in front of a wealthy audience, all across the nation. We can help you put your brand on blast with experiential marketing, and we do some amazing things with digital signage too. Contact us to learn more today!

Marketing is a complex, many-pieced puzzle. There is a lot more going on in the marketing department beyond epic logo design. And yet so many parts of your branding efforts will involve your logo; it becomes the keystone to your entire campaign.

We are not logo specialists at Onstage. We’re marketing experts. We see literally thousands of logos every year. Some are outstanding, others doomed. We’re here to explain a bit about quality logo design. We’ll explain why it matters, how to achieve it, and we’ll give you some legendary logo examples to follow.

Key Attributes of a Winning Logo

We’ve summed up some important aspects of the most successful logos for you to think about:

  • Simplicity is key. The best logos could be drawn from memory easily with a pen. Consider the Mercedes-Benz three-pointed star in a circle or McDonald’s Golden Arches, for instance. We can reproduce the gist of them with just a few lines.
  • Great logos are unique. Your logo shouldn’t look anything like a competitor’s logo. That would turn customers off. Furthermore, you might face trademark infringement lawsuits if your logo is too similar to another organization’s.
  • They are recognizable in different formats and conditions. In other words, you could change the size or color of your logo greatly, and it would still be uniquely yours. Consider Nike’s Swoosh Color, size, contrasting background colors… none of that matters. You would recognize the Swoosh on a sneaker, a business card, or a billboard.
  • They are meaningful enough to be rehashed occasionally. Consider Pepsi-Cola’s globe logo. From time to time, a good logo will need to be updated to keep it fresh. But it must still be meaningful enough, and thoroughly associated with your brand, to endure a face-lift while still retaining symbolism to the audience.

You’ll be spending some significant resources to brand a new logo. Emulate the best and avoid the worst!

Logo “Dont’s” 

Some examples we’ll share here were once iconic. But times and technology are changing. You don’t want your new logo to look old.

  • Don’t write your name in script. Ford and Coca-Cola used their names written in script for logos, and they’re deeply outdated. They’re also difficult to read. Yes, we admit these two examples have made a mark in advertising history. We must acknowledge the tremendous advertising budgets both these companies have used for decades. But students today are not even learning to read or write in cursive, so the next generations will struggle to relate to these logos. These logos need to be overhauled, invalidating all those years of advertising.
  • Avoid slang. Slang changes too quickly. It is also potentially offensive to other groups or as the meaning of a slang term evolves. Before your first year’s ad budget is spent, your logo could be outdated and embarrassing.
  • Don’t use a logo from an online business card publisher. We’re not saying there’s anything wrong with discount business cards you can order online. They’re awesome. Just don’t spend bucks branding a little icon when 500 other businesses have access to it.

Why Quality Logo Design Matters to Us 

At Onstage, we publish luxury program books for high end performing arts venues. We also provide digital signage at luxury venues and our direct mailer, Artspac. It’s our job to produce the highest quality publications to present both the artists and your organization to an educated audience.

It would be a tragedy to present your company to this affluent audience with a sub-par logo. In advertising, we know that every exposure counts. We strive for excellence with our publications because our audience accepts nothing less. We’re not logo designers here, but we can point you in the right direction. If you’d like to talk about marketing to this coveted audience, contact us today!

Related Reading & Resources: Analyzing the 10 Most Iconic Logos of All Time

50 Creative Logos With Hidden Meanings

Participating and placing ads in performing arts program books is an excellent advertising platform and one that’s often overlooked by many of today’s marketers. There are many reasons why this is a great venue (pardon the pun) when brands are showcased inside a program book. Let’s take a look at these five reasons this type of advertising is pure marketing genius.

  1. Print Ads Are Alive And Well

Given all of today’s technology, often marketers are shying away from utilizing print media citing this form of advertising is “dead or dying” when in fact the exact opposite is true. According to recent statistics, the days of printed program books are very much alive and performing well especially when they’re being utilized as an effective marketing tool. Research has revealed those who read material that’s printed on paper comprehend the information much better compared to when it’s viewed digitally and further stats share:

  • When it comes to paper periodicals, New York magazine increased its single-copy sales by nearly 45% in 2015 and subscription rates for other regularly published materials remain strong within the industry.
  • Compared to digital advertising, 55% of consumers find print media to be a more trustworthy form of marketing.
  • While 80% of traditional paper mail is being opened, the same amount of digital emails are deleted without ever being viewed.
  1. Digital Doubts

Even though the acquisition of either obtaining program books or tickets electronically has been migrating to online platforms, many consumers have concerns about this type of delivery. As data breaches, internet scams, identity theft, hackers and fraud continue to be a problem on the world wide web, many customers are losing confidence with the security of some internet transactions and interactions.

In one memorable example, it wasn’t that long ago when Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg found himself in plenty of hot water following the infamous Cambridge Analytica data breach scandal. And because of the losses suffered due to this breach, more than half of Facebook users have a negative perception of this social media site.

  1. Reliable Reputation

In contrast to our previous presentation showcasing a tremendous loss in consumer trust, theaters, and the performing arts, in general, have a positive impact on the community. Studies have shown participation in creative activities improves our sense of connectedness and widens our social networks. It has also been shown to have a positive impact on our sense of hope, self-worth, and well-being.

Purely by association, the material presented in a program book will most likely have a similar effect on its viewers. This connection will often carry over to how consumers perceive a brand, product or service. Subliminally, this association leads many readers to accept the advertised material is supporting the arts and the community as a whole.

  1. Active Audience

Whether it’s before, during or after an event, a program book literally has an active audience who is interested in the material they have either been presented with or purchased. Since electronic devices are at the very least frowned upon at these venues and the majority of the time they’re disallowed, which means more attention is being paid to program books on multiple occasions throughout the performance.

  1. Collectible Keepsakes

Along with ticket stubs, many people collect or often hang on to these handouts as a memento of their experience. Whether program books are saved for a few days, several years or many decades, they’re still available for review and remembrance. In some cases, rare, signed program books have been auctioned off for hundreds or even thousands of dollars decades after they were published and autographed.

There you have it in a nutshell. With the success of print media continuing to thrive, digital doubts on the rise, an excellent reputation in the industry and an active audience that often continues over time, advertising in program books deserve a standing ovation.

You may not know the sport of Three-Day Eventing. To horse-show enthusiasts it’s a grueling event that showcases a horse and rider’s skill at three sports over a period of three days: dressage, cross country and stadium jumping. The most prestigious event of the year happens in Kentucky Horse Park.

Known to riders and spectators simply as “Rolex”, this illustrious event is actually sponsored by Land Rover. Yet Rolex’s marketing there was so effective it will take years to “unbrand” the event. And while Three-Day Eventing is not as popular to the general public as football, anyone who competes in this upscale and expensive sport still references “Rolex” with excitement in the privacy of their barns.

Event Branding: Prerequisites

Any company can put their brand on an event as Rolex did. It’s going to take time and money. Naturally, the more popular the event the more it will cost. But you don’t need to put your brand on the Indy 500. Start small and get your feet wet branding a single performing arts event or concert. Before you even attempt it, you’ll need to make sure your marketing basics are covered:

  • Your logo is simple, specific and trademarked.
  • You have a 3-word catchphrase (like “I’m Lovin’ It” or “Just Do It”) that is trademarked.
  • Your brand is a good fit for the event.
  • Your business name is 3 syllables or less.

If you don’t have all these prerequisites in place, you’ll need to re-brand before you tackle serious event sponsorship.

Is Your Brand a Good Fit For The Event?

Realize that we’re not talking about program book advertising or a small sponsorship here. What Rolex did was a massive multi-million dollar single sponsorship with exclusivity. Rolex was the only name associated with the event. Surely there were other products and companies featured at the event. But you can be sure that no other luxury watch manufacturer got any advertising associated with the Kentucky Three-Day Event at all.

Before investing those millions, the marketing team at Rolex judged they were a good match for this event because:

  • This audience is largely affluent.
  • The events are timed to hundredths of a second. Riders, coaches, and spectators will be checking their watches all weekend long.

The sport and the audience were a perfect match for a high-end luxury watchmaker. Other brands do the same sort of marketing all the time. Monster Energy Drinks targets 18-30-year-old males with extreme sports sponsorships. Matching the brand with the audience is key!

It Takes  a Long Time

In the beginning, we called it “The Rolex Three-Day Event”. As a few years went by it became “Rolex Three-Day” and finally, for 20 years or so (and still to this day) we simply call this event “Rolex”. But it took 25 years!

Something about “The Land Rover Three-Day Event” just doesn’t roll off the tongue… YET. Because for 25 years it’s been ROLEX! So realize that it will take a few years to burn your brand onto an event, don’t give up after one or two years, you’re making a long term commitment.

At Onstage Publications our specialty is marketing to an affluent audience. Our product speaks to luxury audiences in high-end venues, and we are the industry experts. Check out our blog for more great marketing resources. If you’d like to learn more about advertising in luxury venues, or reaching a wealthy audience contact us today!

Related Reading & Resources:

Kentucky Three-Day Event History

Rolex Out, Land Rover In as Sponsor: Horse Fans May Say They’re Going to Rolex This Year but They’re Not

Marketing Strategy of Rolex

Savvy marketers know there is more to advertising than just putting your ad in front of eyeballs. You need to know your specific target market, and you want to leave them with an impression that really sticks. Performing arts program book advertising does more than just put your ad in front of faces once, program books are keepsakes to be kept and reviewed later by reminiscing fans. The most effective way to leave an impression on this audience is to combine program book advertising with digital signage, and direct mail to provide a memorable experience at the venue itself as well as after the performance.

Make the Experience Memorable: An Imaginary Case Study

Every organization is different so we’ll use an imaginary company, Luxury Lemonade, to illustrate how you can make a memorable experience for the audience and leave a lasting impression. Imagine…

Luxury Lemonade has secured a stall for a lemonade stand at a prominent outdoor multi-day summer jazz festival. They use bright, highly visible awnings imprinted with their logo and digital signage throughout the venue. They’ve put a matching ad in the festival program book, and they’ve provided shaded tables for customers to linger at and refresh themselves.

Keeping it simple, Luxury Lemonade is only offering their two most popular beverages: Luxury Lemonade and Strawberry Lux. Customers purchase the drinks and receive it in a branded cup, imprinted with their logo. All throughout the event, attendees come back to the lemonade stand again and again. They’re hot, they’re thirsty and they need a place to take a break.

Years later, festival-goers will remember with fondness the shade and drinks that refreshed them. They will have tossed the branded cup. Bright awnings have lost their glitter in the haze of memory as time went by. It’s the physical memory of refreshment they will conjure when they review their program book later and think of Luxury Lemonade.

Obviously, few things could be more refreshing than a cold lemonade at a hot summer festival. Not every business could follow this precise model. However, EVERY performing arts sponsor or advertiser can be interactive and make a memorable experience for the audience. Consider these performing arts-friendly marketing ideas for your brand:

Positive Audience Experiences for Branding At A Performing Arts Venue

  • Pre-Performance with digital signage throughout the lobby. Prime the marketing pump with venue digital signage! Excitement before any performance can be smelled throughout the hall by excited patrons about to see a performance of their lifetimes. They are relaxed and having fun. By having your brand on the surrounding digital signs in the venue hall, you are able to generate awareness for your brand.
  • At-Performance with program books. The patrons have made it to their seats. It’s time for the main performance and your brand’s success now rests in the hands of every patrons’ hands.
  • Post-Performance with direct mail. Keep your brand alive with post-performance direct mail in Artspac. With a focus on measurable results and advancing your brand’s awareness, Artspac is delivered to a highly coveted mailing list.

The key takeaway here is that any type of business can promote themselves using a memorable concert experience, but you need to make sure your brand is associated in a positive way. We call this performing arts experiential marketing!

At Onstage, our business is getting your brand in front of a unique, high-end demographic. We understand that performing arts marketing is a success when the audience has an amazing time and the sponsors make a lasting impression. Get more performing arts advertising ideas at our blog!

Related Reading:

How to Promote Your Brand at a Music Festival

Today’s marketing avenues are changing. When you want to draw more business into your restaurant, you have to get creative with your marketing approach. If you’re advertising where everyone else is, such as Facebook or other social media platforms, your message is getting lost.

It pays to think outside of the box, which is all the more reason to know who your target audience is. Consider your location and the type of demographic that you’re trying to appeal to. You want people who have extra money to spend, not the people who are pinching pennies and can’t afford to eat out.

Market to Patrons of the Performing Arts

Those who have money to spend on the performing arts have the money to eat out. They recognize the importance of eating out and the entire atmosphere that goes with it. As such, considering changing some of your marketing campaigns to make sure that you’re marketing to this audience is always a win-win.

Granted, you could get creative with the way that your Facebook ads find people. However, you’re missing out on the people who aren’t on social media. Some people don’t have the time to check their statuses and read through the seemingly endless number of posts in their timeline.

A better strategy is to bring your restaurant advertisements directly to the source. Get your ads in front of people who matter.

Your restaurant ad can be printed in the program books that are distributed to everyone at the beginning of a performance. As they browse through it to find out who the performers are, they’ll also see various business advertisements. Because you’re perceived as supporting one of their favorite things, they’ll be more inclined to support you, too.

You can also explore venue digital signage. This allows you to have a visual way of showing off all of the excellent food and service that you’re known for. By placing photos and videos that can be displayed in the theatres and the other performing arts venues, your restaurant will stand out. While patrons are milling in to see the performance, they’ll see your ad on these digital signs. Make their mouth’s water and when the performance ends, they may be hungry enough to make a bee-line right to your restaurant.

In addition to both the printed program books and venue digital signage, riding along with the direct mail of specific performing arts venues is another way to get in front of this demographic. Make an enticing enough offer on this direct mail piece and your restaurant will have just as much of a packed house as the theatre they are coming from.

Get Creative

The reality is that you have to be more creative about marketing than the restaurants you’re in competition with. If you duplicate the efforts that everyone else is doing, you’re going to have minimal results, and your restaurant will be lost in the clutter. You need to be creative with where you put your advertising – and performing arts advertising can be an excellent place for you to do this.

Your marketing campaign should never rely on one form of marketing. Not everyone will be on social media. Not everyone will read the performing arts program books. Not everyone will remember what they see on a digital screen. However, when you have your marketing messages located prominently in many places, people will start to establish brand recognition. They’ll remember seeing you in a few different places – and that’s when you know that your marketing efforts are working.

Word of mouth marketing simply isn’t effective any longer. Many people forget what they heard before they have a chance to tell someone. It’s not that people are becoming more forgetful, though. It’s because people are becoming victims of information overload.

When you want your restaurant to stand out from the clutter and advertise in a new and exciting way, contact us at Onstage Publications. We’re here to show you that the patrons of the performing arts have money to spend – and if you advertise correctly, they can be spending it at your restaurant.

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