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UK Jewish Comedy Festival, 2019

JW3's 2018 UK Jewish Comedy Festival was far from being a success. With low attendance and hardly any 'buzz' created, they had to cancel several events mid-festival, and by the end of the week, only six events took place – hardly a 'festival'. So when I was cast with marketing the 2019 festival, it was clear that our work had been cut out for us.


Unlike previous years, I made sure the marketing mindset was there from the get-go, getting myself involved in the decision regarding the final line-up of the festival, cancelling possible weak events before they go on sale, strengthening other events that might need a boost to reach the right audience, creating a catalogue of events for families (such as Bring Your Own Baby stand-up morning, and adding a Cinema programme to the festival - for the first time– with retrospectives to Jewish comedies and a special category: Funny Films for Toddlers.


The marketing scheme drew from the famous speech of Shylock, the Jewish merchant: "If you tell us a joke, do we not laugh?". Based on that line, and using ten different Jewish jokes, I produced a series of posters, banners, and print and cinema ads that generated the 'buzz' that was severely missed in previous years. Further efforts included offering bundles and promotions to JW3's regular audience, increasing the festival's reach through PR and social media campaigns, and creating a colourful point-of-sale campaign that ensured everybody knew it was 'festival week'.


By the end of the week, the festival was declared a success. It not only sold enough tickets and filled JW3's 270-seater hall throughout the week, but it also prompted a broader interest within the community and press members and even landed JW3 a rare spot on BBC's 'Stories Of Us'.

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