A Room Full of Participants

Last night was the second night of the Paper Nickels CD release party.  Packed to the rafters again.  I was looking around the room and realized that though there were a tons of different faces than the night before – a lot of them were the same. People had come back to hear the same band two nights in a row (not the same songs, mind you, but you see my point.)

We talk about patrons and ticket buyers and audiences and purchasers and engagement. And sure all those people were in the room, everyone had one or more of those labels on them, but there seemed to be something more than an audience and engagement. These folks were actively participating. They knew songs, they knew the songwriters, they shouted requests, they laughed and applauded, they talked about the music, the band members, the band. They all had a clearly vested interest in being there. And I don’t know that any of those interests were exactly the same, but again you see my point.

Participating is different. It’s like you’ve got hand in the game. Participants don’t ask friends if they are going to something, they ask friends when they are going to something.  It’s not should we go, it’s we’ve got to go.

I’m not saying participants always buy in advance, I myself am the queen of advance purchase and still didn’t buy my ticket til the morning of.  But I knew I was going. I felt like I was already part of something bigger than “let’s go see a band/a play/a whatever” – I wanted to be present for something that was already part of my life.

How are you getting folks to participate in your work?

Little bit of Corin magic that I think most folks who read this will smile at and nod in agreement. It’s still cold out there – this should warm you up.

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