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A Handbook of Cultural Economics, Second Edition

A Handbook of Cultural Economics, Second Edition

Elgar original reference

Edited by Ruth Towse

The second edition of this widely acclaimed and extensively cited collection of original contributions by specialist authors reflects changes in the field of cultural economics over the last eight years. Thoroughly revised chapters alongside new topics and contributors bring the Handbook up to date, taking into account new research, literature and the impact of new technologies in the creative industries.

Chapter 37: Marketing the Arts

François Colbert

Subjects: economics and finance, cultural economics, intellectual property, public sector economics


François Colbert Traditional marketing theory maintains that a company seeks to fulfil an existing need among consumers in order to be successful. In the traditional model, the marketing components of the model must be considered a sequence that starts in the ‘market’. The market is thus both the starting and the finishing point for this process. Although the marketing model for cultural enterprises contains the same components as the traditional marketing model, the marketing process for product-centred cultural enterprises is different. As Figure 37.1 shows, the process starts within the enterprise, in the product itself, as stated in the definition below. The enterprise tries to decide which part of the market is likely to be interested in its product. Once potential customers are identified, the company will decide on the other three elements – price, place and promotion – for this clientele. In this type of company, the process order would be company (product)–information system–market–information system–company–residual marketing mix–market. The starting point is the product and the destination is the market. This ‘product-to-client’ approach is truly typical of the not-for-profit arts sector. Therefore we can define cultural marketing as: the art of reaching those market segments likely to be interested in the product while adjusting to the product the commercial variables – price, place and promotion – to put the product in contact with a sufficient number of consumers and to reach the objectives consistent with the mission of the cultural enterprise. (Colbert et al., 2007, p. 14)...

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