With a strong history and steep competition in Vancouver, how could we outdo even the grandest of performances?
The Nutcracker has played in hundreds of cities for hundreds of years – aka, it is not a new story.
So, how do you pitch original and timely angles to generate earned media coverage and drive conversions?
Build awareness of the show's return
Through a robust PR strategy
Drive ticket sales
Through an omnichannel marketing strategy
Beautify our digital presence
By creating an elegant social media strategy
Getting the City Talking
Public Relations & Earned Media
Our PR team channelled the current atmosphere in the arts, society, and politics into creating compelling story angles that matter now. The “master” press release captured a stunning post-pandemic comeback and a message of inclusion for a new generation of ballet. We focused on finding Goh Ballet talent with an exciting story to tell or an honest opinion on the world of dance today.
Always asking: Why is this newsworthy today?
Our comprehensive public relations strategy included nine unique story angles – each with its own press release, in-email pitch, and tailored media list. After pitching hundreds of contacts in the journalism community, Kipling’s PR team coordinated upwards of 20 interviews and garnered dozens of found stories by local and national media.
In response to our pitches, we fielded interview requests from broadcasters, including Global News, CBC News National, CBC News Vancouver, Shaw TV, CTV News, CityNews, and Fairchild TV, to name a few.
We also landed earned profiles and trend stories in some of Vancouver’s most prominent publications: Vancouver Sun, The Province, The Georgia Straight, Vancouver Is Awesome, Business in Vancouver, Daily Hive, Curiocity, North Shore News, Sing Tao Daily, Prince George Post, Vancouver’s Best Places, Pancouver, and Squamish Post.
A Large-Scale Comeback
This year, we were mentioned 105 times in over 68 platforms in four languages, leading to 20,354,505 total earned media impressions.
How did we do it?
- By developing and preparing a comprehensive PR strategy three months before the show.
- By pre-interviewing and recording potential interviewees.
- By completing press release preparation of nine unique story angles & research of individual media lists personalized to each angle.
- By planning and executing two media events so journalists could write reviews before the show.
- By drafting pitch emails to hook and compliment press releases.
- By networking with journalists and facilitating all interviews between Canadian media and Goh Ballet talent.
- By drafting event listings and submitting Nutcracker information to event calendars.
Aside from online print articles and broadcast TV, radio was one of our most successful media types this season. Coverage from podcasts like Business in Vancouver, The Jill Bennett Show, and three radio broadcasts from CBC allowed us to spotlight Goh Ballet’s media-savvy talent. This content made it onto sites like New York Public Radio, Omni FM, and Player FM.
Performance Marketing & Organic Social Media
Setting the Stage to Break Ticket Sale Records
From the outset of this campaign, our primary objective was to deliver the best year of sales The Nutcracker has ever seen.
To do so, Kipling identified areas of opportunity in our performance strategy to expand our reach and grow the value of a dollar. As a result, this year’s Nutcracker campaign performance soared, implementing today’s best practices and a robust advertising and social media strategy.
The collaborative effort between Kipling Media and Goh Ballet’s core team led to the event’s first-ever 100% sellout. Together, we set the foundation for a successful partnership for years to come.
Re-telling a beautiful story, with every step
In Vancouver’s first year of full-capacity events after the pandemic, the competition was high, and Goh Ballet’s show wasn’t the only Nutcracker in Vancouver.
To drive digital success, the Kipling team leveraged creative from Goh Ballet’s Fallen Prince short film to develop assets for our performance campaigns, emphasizing continuous copy improvements based on rapid testing.
In doing so, we generated a total of 3,722,107 paid media impressions and 727,027 total digital ad impressions.
How did we do it?
- By overseeing rapid performance testing to regularly update copy and creative assets, keeping ads fresh and optimized.
- By buying diversified media placements covering the Lower Mainland, both online and OOH.
- By developing innovative cinematic material which captivated the audience and increased brand awareness.
Making a Social Media Mark
Our social strategy utilized previous show footage, photography, and authentic behind-the-scenes content to effectively communicate unique identifiers of Goh Ballet’s The Nutcracker while contributing to our primary objective of driving ticket sales.
As a bonus, community engagement was a significant aspect of our strategy; partnering with community media hubs and giving followers a glimpse behind the curtain with short-form, behind-the-scenes content were major winners for our channel growth.
A perfect performance pirouette
Earned media value
Goh Ballet’s The Nutcracker elegantly returned to Queen Elizabeth Stage with its first performance schedule post-pandemic. With a goal of 90% in sales, the Kipling and Goh Ballet team shone, reaching a complete 100% sellout.
This holiday season, we achieved our objectives to set the stage for a beautiful and beloved Vancouver event, and are excited to create more magical holiday moments for the city!