It’s A Year Later, Do You Know Where Your Marketing Is?

Hat tip to Dave Wakeman for tweeting an insightful piece about marketing during Covid — Mine.

I know, self-involved much, Joe?

To be fair, all credit rightfully goes to Colleen Dilenschneider whose piece I was drawing attention to.

Wakeman revisiting an entry I made nearly a year ago provides a good check for the non-profit arts industry. In that original post, Dilenschneider talked about how to effectively shift messaging from “visit now,” to maintaining general awareness, if not cultivating an active engagement dialogue.

Now obviously the truth is more complicated than depicted in Wakeman’s tweet. The economics of digital engagement did not provide a sustainable revenue stream, even for the best resourced arts organizations. There were big loans, grant programs and donor drives. There were layoffs and cutbacks. Capacity to survive is not solely determined by a good social media and digital strategy.

That said, a good social media and digital communication strategy will definitely be a determinant of success when people start to wander back to participate in events and activities.

Now that we are reaching the year anniversary of everything closing, take time to evaluate what you have been doing. What has worked, what needs to be changed, what needs to be started.

Post title is from the iconic PSA series

About Joe Patti

I have been writing Butts in the Seats (BitS) on topics of arts and cultural administration since 2004 (yikes!). Given the ever evolving concerns facing the sector, I have yet to exhaust the available subject matter. In addition to BitS, I am a founding contributor to the ArtsHacker ( website where I focus on topics related to boards, law, governance, policy and practice.

I am also an evangelist for the effort to Build Public Will For Arts and Culture being helmed by Arts Midwest and the Metropolitan Group. (

I am currently the Director of the Grand Opera House in Macon, GA.

Among the things I am most proud are having produced an opera in the Hawaiian language and a dance drama about Hawaii's snow goddess Poli'ahu while working as a Theater Manager in Hawaii. Though there are many more highlights than there is space here to list.


Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to Butts In The Seats and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Thank you for subscribing.

Please enter a valid email address

Leave a Comment

Send this to a friend