Want Some Breakthrough Ideas? Just Do What Other (But Different) People Have Already Done

I picked up a habit a long time ago that I want to share with you: I fly a fair amount, and every couple of months when I’m going through an airport, I pick up a magazine that I would never normally read. I look for topics, almost at random, that wouldn’t typically interest me.

The reason I do this is because I believe very strongly in learning from people in other fields, even far off fields. I think I even picked up a copy of Knitscene once. People doing work that’s very different from yours may think in ways that are very different from you. Professions and industries develop patterns, and, being human, we get a little stuck sometimes. Things that are obvious and easy in one field may be very fresh concepts in another, and vice versa. A mind-bending problem to you may have been solved years ago in the knitting world.

That’s why I strongly advocate for crossing lines more frequently between genres of live entertainment marketing. If you’re in sports marketing or theater marketing or music marketing, you’re all in very similar roles with a ton to learn from each other.

That’s why I love what Scott Kane and the folks at Shorenstein Hays Nederlander in San Francisco have done. Taking a cue from baseball and other sports marketers, they’ve developed the first Broadway bobblehead. Here’s one hanging out with us here at Goldstar (pictured to the right).

It’s in support of the Newsies Tour, and it’s going to be a giveaway to attendees on Bobblehead Day (or maybe night).

Very cool stuff! A super successful concept from their colleagues at the San Francisco Giants (and others) translates extremely well into marketing theater.

The good news is that these ideas flow in every direction. But you do have to look.

• Join our conversation on Twitter about Customer Service for Audience Building with Goldstar CEO Jim McCarthy @goldstarjim and Shoshana Fanizza of Audience Development Specialists @AudienceDevSpec on September 25, 2014, at noon ET. Use #auddev to participate with questions and comments. The chat will run one hour.

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