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The High Wire Act Of The Modern Marketer

January 27, 2017

By Drew Neisser

As the largest theatrical producer in the world, you might think that Cirque du Soleil could take a back seat to marketing. Indeed this was the case for many years. But with competition rising, Cirque has upped its game on the marketing front, adding talent like Alma Derricks, VP Sales and Marketing of Cirque’s Resident Shows Division.

In our interview below, Alma shares some of the challenges she faced at Cirque: differentiating a portfolio of eight shows in Las Vegas, rebranding one of the shows, creating new customer experiences and even establishing a new line of business entirely. It is little wonder that Alma garnered the Customer Experience Award from The CMO Club. Read on to discover the high wire act of the modern marketer.

Drew: How did you end up at Cirque Du Soleil?

Alma: The circus sort of finds you, Drew. I can’t say that 10 years ago this was on my roadmap. It appeared as an opportunity. One of the throughlines in my career is that I run towards moments of inflection and Cirque, with its new private equity ownership, was definitely at one of those points when I joined last July. I love getting to ask questions, top to bottom, without any regard for how things have always been done. And that’s what I walked into.

So let’s talk about the Resident Shows Division at Cirque de Soleil.

Alma: There are two major divisions at Cirque de Soleil. There’s the Residents Shows Division which oversees shows that are nailed down including our eight shows in Las Vegas and Orlando. We also have another team, the Touring Shows Division, that oversees shows that move around in the big top tent or tour in arenas.

That’s a lot of shows and seats to fill.

Alma: In Las Vegas, we sell as many as 20,000 tickets a night. It’s a lot of inventory in a very, very busy town. My job is all about keeping our shows top of mind. For us, that’s usually an interesting continuum. Because we’re based in resorts, it’s not likely that you’ll see one of our shows more than once a year so, it’s important to stay in your peripheral vision. Once the decision is made to visit Las Vegas or Orlando, it’s really important that for us to break through the noise and remind you that we’re the most exciting thing that you can do in the evening. Cirque is over 30 years old. For the mass majority of those years, Cirque grew organically because it was new, different and dazzling. For example, a show like O, which is our flagship show at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, was sold out for two years when it opened. Marketing thinking is a relatively new thing for Cirque but incredibly important now that we’re not the newest kid on the block.

So what now?

Alma: Now, we’re in a different stage of life because we’re more established and face a lot of different challenges in the market. Vegas has gone through a number of reinventions …read more

Source:: Social Media Explorer