Contemporary music enthusiasts

Journal of Arts Marketing Issue 05 – April 2002

Open to Persuasion
How can we persuade people to try something different?
How can we persuade people to try something different? Andrew McIntyre argues that the difference between arts attenders and non-attenders is simply motivation. We talk about attenders, intenders, resistors and rejectors and tend to have a picture in our mind of lots of people who would come to our events if only we could remove the barriers that stop them. He suggests that this picture is wrong: these people are not ‘intenders’, because they have no intention of attending. Why? Because we don’t tell them what they will get out of it. If we thought of them as ‘open to persuasion’, then we would communicate much more effectively.
That’s what this column is about. How can we use marketing communications to persuade people that they want to come to our events?
I’ve been talking with Oxford Contemporary Music’s core audience, some of the most enthusiastic arts attenders I have ever met. They go to all sorts of arts events but are particularly committed to seeking out new musical experiences. One even resorts to going into Oxfam shops and buying second-hand cassette tapes at random to see if there is anything unfamiliar that he can follow up. But even these enthusiasts complain that it is difficult to find new music that they might enjoy…
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