Venues Today Magazine says: Crown Coliseum,

You’re Doing Great!

I must have missed that piece of good news. Some people say good news travels fast. Unfortunately, here in Fayetteville, it sometimes doesn’t travel at all.  Last week I heard some great news after a wonderful and very enlightening conversation with the Crown Coliseum’s Director of Marketing, Katie Mikos.

10-15-14-pub-notescrown_coliseum.gifThe conversation was enlightening because she shared some very good news about the Crown Coliseum of which I was totally unaware. It was wonderful because it demonstrated that we continue to make notable progress in developing our $60 million entertainment facility into a valuable countywide quality-of-life asset. So let me share it with you.

Venues Today Magazine ranked the Crown Coliseum Complex the fourth best entertainment venue in the Carolinas. That’s huge! According to Mikos, this ranking was based upon capacity, gross sales of the facility, total attendance and number of shows booked between August 2013 and July 2014. Global Spectrum has managed the facility since November 2013. Venues Today Magazine is the leading authoritative source for reporting on live entertainment and its events industry. It serves industry management, owners and suppliers to music, sports and meetings’ venues internationally. It also provides high-profile entertainment industry leaders with the information they need to know about operating a successful business. As the industry authority, Venues Today Magazine provides the who, what, when, where and how information to industry management and executives.  

There is no doubt that Global Spectrum’s capable and talented management team, under the leadership and direction of General Manager Jim Grafstrom, is responsible for these ratings. The Crown Coliseum Complex is one of the newest additions to the Global Spectrum family and has never even made the Top 10 in the past. Grafstrom took the management reigns in November 2013 and has been working hard to improve the facility while, at the same time, embracing a very diversified community.

This is an extremely difficult task when we lack a local TV station and have limited effective local media coverage. Nonetheless, the Crown’s fourth place ranking is an awesome accomplishment when you consider that Global Spectrum has been in charge less than a year, managing more than 69,000 square feet of meeting and convention space with a 10,000+ seat coliseum, 4,000+ seat arena and 2,400 seat theatre. In addition, there are many new and exciting innovations on the horizon for enhancing the Crown entertainment experience.

Fayetteville Mayor Nat Robertson is a current Crown Coliseum board member and a vocal proponent of Global Spectrum’s management style. When asked recently about their progress and this recent breakthrough achievement he said:

“This is an exciting new chapter for Cumberland County and the Crown.  Being recognized for the first time ever amongst our peers in the top four venues is confirmation that the Crown Coliseum Board and the Cumberland County Commissioners made the right move a year ago in bringing in Global Spectrum to manage the complex.  The Global management team and the Crown staff have really stepped up their game, and that has been recognized by Venues Today Magazine, the region’s other venues and the residents of Cumberland County.  I’m still looking forward to more great things from the Crown.”

My sentiments exactly. Now, let’s tell the story! Let’s start banging the drum loudly and blowing our own horn and getting people to pay attention to what’s going on at the Crown. Sure, we have increased events, and fewer expenses, which have saved Cumberland County taxpayers more than $500,000 in their first year of operations. Yes, the Crown has a new logo, an updated user-friendly website, refinished concourse floors, upgraded and refurbished club seats, upgraded catering and food concessions, renovated luxury suites and, future plans to design a new and innovative full service bar and restaurant on the coliseum’s hospitality level.

All of this, and our Crown Coliseum is ranked the  # 4 best entertainment venue in the Carolinas. Now, that’s a story that needs to be told. That’s a headline! That’s news to this community and surely worth more than a couple puny sentences buried deep in the bowels of our four section daily newspaper.

If you have no local TV station, a daily newspaper that covets, controls and dictates its journalistic priorities, 14 radio stations with “no community reporters” and a unique and diverse county population that practically changes and reinvents itself every 30 days, what are your alternatives? Well, you do it yourself!!!  Get proactive. Get aggressive. Put a strong local advertising, marketing and promotion campaign together that includes an enthusiastic, aggressive and vibrant “ground game.”  

Take control of the media. Control the advertising. Control the promotion and ultimately you will control the brand. Do not depend on the generosity of others to define who or what you are or to what level of success you are entitled. In the end, the Crown and the entire community will move in the right direction. Guaranteed! Global Spectrum, welcome to Fayetteville, Fort Bragg and Cumberland County. Fayetteville, Fort Bragg and Cumberland County, go out to the Crown Coliseum and see what you’re missing. Crown Coliseum, extend the invitation.

Thanks for reading Up & Coming Weekly.

Photo: Crown Complex

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