Chicago Shakespeare Theater

Special event campaign


  • In order to kick off the Chicago Shakespeare Theater’s production of Sunday in the Park with George, actors put on a surprise live performance at the Art Institute in Chicago. The play took place in front of a life-sized reimagining of George Seurat’s Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte, from which was absent certain key elements from the original work of art

Call to Action

  • After the show, the cast and crew invited the audience to opt into a mobile campaign to
    discover the secrets of the missing characters
  • Those customers who texted in received an MMS video message explaining how the missing characters had come to life in a play, as well as where to buy tickets to see the new show at the Chicago Shakespeare Theater

Measurement of Success

  • Eight million impressions in 24 hours
  • Broke an all-time record with the highest number of first-time guests in the history of theater
  • Show extended for an extra week due to the high demand for tickets
  • 14% who opted in shared content on Facebook
  • 17% who opted in chose to receive future messages from the Chicago Shakespeare Theater

Key Takeaways

  • This well-crafted campaign shows how to use MMS to create an exciting, active conversation that conveys a compelling message to customers
  • Particular kudos go to the use of timing and relevancy, as the Chicago Shakespeare Theater quickly reached millions of viewers and built a sizable database of opted-in customers  from scratch