One of the great mysteries of our business is how much of an effect the NYT (still) has? Response to good reviews is uneven. Not all ads deliver sales. Do people still read the New York Times? Do they read it in print or just on-line? Do they read the ABC’s (a.k.a. the Theatre Directory)? Everyone has their view about the New York Times readership habits of theatre goers. To help with this discussion we periodically ask Telecharge customers about their readership of the NYT to see if responses have changed and to see if we can learn information useful in the marketing of Broadway shows.
We broke up our most recent survey into three groups, which were each further divided into NYC, suburban and out of town. One group was Wednesday Matinee customers, another group was customers who saw a show in its second year or later, and the third group was everyone else (the most important for new shows).
The basic question we asked was “do you read the NYT in print”?
Yes many do: overall 34% of the respondents said yes. Not a big number. The devil, however, is in the details. In the main group, 29% said yes versus 31% of the second year customers and 43% of Wednesday Matinee buyers. It seems to defy logic but the second year group was very small.
When we look at where they live, 48% of NYC ticket buyers said yes versus 38% of suburban ticket buyers and 26% of out of town ticket buyers. It is worth noting, however, that for most shows the largest segment of ticket buyers are from out of town; as far as the survey, 44% of the nearly 8,000 responses were from out of town customers. The result is the 26% who were from out of town generated as many yes answers as those who lived either in NYC or the suburbs. As with much of what we learn about the media habits of theatergoers, there does not appear to be any media that captures a large segment of buyers any longer.
The next post will be about readership of the Theatre Directory or the ABCs.