There's No Defying The New Law of "Gravity"

© 2013 Warner Bros. Pictures

© 2013 Warner Bros. Pictures

A few weeks ago, I led a marketing workshop for the deans of continuing education programs at many of the nation's leading arts colleges. 

Among the ideas I underscored: You're no longer merely competing with other arts classes and programs; you're competing with everything else that wants the time, attention and money of your potential students. 

And, like it or not, those allures get more and more seductive every day. 

Doug Borwick, past president of the Association of Arts Administration Educators, just made the same point, more eloquently, on his "Emerging Matters" blog. Having just seen the motion picture "Gravity," Borwick commented:

"Movies are, despite what we might wish, one element of our competition. The further 'behind' we fall in the capacity to astonish, the more difficult it will be to draw people through our doors." 

Borwick has it exactly right: "Capacity to astonish" is the new marketing metric, whether you're selling new arts classes or new apps. Marketers who don't follow suit will soon find themselves alone in the universe.