Spotlight - The freeFall Theatre
The freeFall Theatre Company in St. Petersburg, Florida has established itself as a rich community resource and a venue to enjoy critically acclaimed performances ThunderTix is proud to be freeFall's ticketing software of choice. We consider the theater a reference standard on how a venue should promote itself and foster the shared experience. In this spotlight we'll highlight their methods so you can learn from one of the best.
Integrity and commitment start with a venue’s owners, operators and trustees. A quick look at the well-worded statements by freeFall’s principals and one is immediately struck with admiration. FreeFall describes itself as operating a Small Professional Theatre (SPT) contract with the union of professional actors and stage managers on a national scope. An emphasis is placed on hiring union and non-union actors and production professionals in order to ensure “the lives and livelihoods of the professional artists”.
From that apt self-description, the ‘About’ page just gets better as it details its goals:
We will always seek to create experiences that are visceral and authentic. We will attempt to thrill our audiences with surprisingly honest work. This reflects our belief that the strength of live performance lies in the fact that it is a real experience that is happening NOW, which is shared by the artists and the audience.
Even more so is the mission and values statement that resonates with actors and patrons alike:
The mission of freeFall theatre is to pursue art's greater purposes and the transformative power of theatre - as a builder of community, a source of upliftment, and a builder of cultural legacy.We are committed to improving the lives of the citizens of Tampa Bay through our efforts to provide broad access to theatre that represents a high level of artistic achievement, and through educational programs that increase the community's understanding and enjoyment of live theatre.
Too often venues do not spell out their mission clearly on their website for ticket buyers, performers and fellow venue owners to read for themselves. The practice of publishing your Mission & Values statement, as freeFall has done, is highly recommended.
Beyond statements of intent, are the brick and mortar realities of the venue itself. Putting words into practice, freeFall adheres to the emerging new era of versitility by being a true multi-use venue. Tampa Bay patrons enjoy the theatre’s elegant interior ambience for performances, actors use a highly functional actors rehearsal area, and there are even facilities for outdoor movie screenings, corporate meetings and even weddings.
The theatre's admirable intent and impressive versatility are matched by its grasp of all the very latest social media tools.
Masters of the three chapters
Should you be needing a shining example of how you can increase event awareness, and thereby increase ticket sales, look no further than how the freeFall Theatre executes its social media strategy.
The website is a beautiful display of the information that ticket buyers need to discover upcoming performances. Note the consistent design elements, the easy to use navigation and, our favorite, multiple social sharing tools.
Everyone has come to expect a venue to have a lively presence on Twitter and a Facebook, but freeFall goes above and beyond with a stylish carousel of images from Flickr and a dedicated Youtube channel too. We have written before of the importance of sharing of photos taken by partons post-event and if you have not yet begun the practice of sharing via social media, take the time to learn from freeFall’s example.
Outside the scope of what the theatre does on its own, the so-called crowd sourced assets of Yelp and Fourquare round out freeFall's tour social media tour de force.
Hands down, I won't miss any of their productions. Each and every performance I have seen there transports me to a bigger city. We are so fortunate to have such outstanding actors, producers, writers and more in this area who have an incredible new home.
The shared experience has three chapters, anticipation, exuberance and nostalgia. Freefall knows this formula very well as seen by their near perfect social media efforts.
Be savvy like the freeFall Theatre Company
We hope this spotlight on the freefall Theater helps you with your event awareness as a great example of the how it’s done. In the coming weeks, we’ll be posting many more “spotlights” on events, venues, our beloved ThunderTix users and some “secret” lesser known technical aspects of a successful event.