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In a couple weeks, performing arts organizations are getting ready to publish their largest print run of the season for their holiday program books or playbills.

This is a good opportunity to take advantage of this time of year to squeeze a bit more advertising into your program books or playbills.

Many of your current advertisers have taken several weeks, if not months to cultivate. This will always be the case for much of your loyal program book advertisers.

However, there are always going to be times where you have unsold pages, or the opportunity arises where if you add more pages, you can sell them.

Holiday program books or playbills are the perfect example of this situation.

Larger print runs for these seasonal program books are going to be more attractive to the occasional advertiser or prospect that you never could close the deal on in the past.

By utilizing your CRM, you will want to identify your program book or playbill advertiser prospects that would be a good fit for these larger, holiday edition print runs.

The Magic E-Mail

After you’ve identified these prospects, construct an email to these opportunities with a special, limited time only offer. You will want to make sure the rate you are selling this special offer covers all your costs plus a margin for your program book or playbill. However, don’t price it lower than what your current advertisers are paying.

So, if you have priced your four pages at $1,000.00 each, you have created the opportunity of an additional $4,000.00 in program book or playbill advertising sales!

It is important to note, this tactic should only be used with established relationships, and should not be used as a “cold” email.

To get the best results possible from this tactic, you will want to have a prospect pool of 50 or more businesses.

You’ve heard the saying “sales is a numbers game”, well this tactic is exactly that—a numbers game. So, the more prospects you have in your CRM, the better.

If you’ve done a good job establishing relationships with these prospects, your email will be opened and read. And your chances of selling these pages will be better than your cold calling conversion rate would be.

We associate this type of program book ad sale to the bubble gum at the check-out counter. You probably didn’t go into the grocery store for just a pack of bubble gum, but now that you saw it, you buy it.

This is called an impulse purchase, and it can be done on a limited basis with your program book ad sales for holiday or special editions.

Once you’ve sold a few of these, these advertisers now become program book advertisers to call and sell into additional editions, or better yet, full season buys! Good selling.