Leah Gaffney


Advertising & Integrated Marketing Communications, Arts & Entertainment Management
Department of Marketing
Advisor: Professor Chris Ramos

Document Type



On March 12th, 2020, all Broadway productions closed their theaters due to the declaration of the Covid-19 global pandemic. This shutdown led to companies in the Broadway industry transitioning to nontraditional marketing strategies. This paper will outline how the Covid-19 pandemic led to changes in strategic marketing decisions and compare the motivations of these decisions for two Broadway companies: Playbill and The Broadway League. Previous literature denotes changes to marketing strategies as a result of other historic events in the
industry, and current news sources provide industry insight into the campaign discussions.Primary research will be conducted through one-on-one structured interviews with employees of these companies directly involved in marketing strategy and implementation. This thesis aims to compare the marketing responses to Covid-19 of Playbill and The Broadway League and determine whose efforts were more impactful to the industry. The goal of this thesis is also to understand future marketing trends as the Covid-19 pandemic becomes more manageable and a “new normal” emerges. Based on the research and interviews conducted, one can infer that the changes in marketing from the pandemic will evolve marketing into a hybrid strategy, combining the newly established digital realm, with the former traditional marketing. Nevertheless, the pandemic is currently still impacting the world and constantly evolving, so discoveries will occur throughout this thesis, and the research will be updated to reflect this as much as possible.