Mary Trudel and Jai Sen addressed the Communicating The Museum Conference

As part of the global Communicating The Museum Conference at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Trudel | MacPherson and Sen Associates presented back to back Strengthening Your Social Net: Adapting to a Connected Future workshops on June 28th

Mary Trudel and Jai Sen addressed delegates at the international Communicating The Museum Conference held at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. Noting that, “Adopting digital and social media is no longer optional,” Mary and Jai reviewed the larger, long-term technology issues affecting visual arts organizations and museums.

Based on our landmark How Strong Is Your Social Net? study of digital and social media adoption and usage among arts organizations, we presented an overview of digital media attitudes, successes, and challenges facing visual arts organizations and museums specifically. Looking at the issue from a macro view gave participants an opportunity to compare their experiences with others’ and shape their strategies by making more informed decisions about which technologies to adopt.

Participants completed a brief questionnaire during the session comparing their results and institutional attitudes with the national sample. Respondents indicated minimal resistance to adopting digital and social platforms with only 30% reporting “some resistance” and 35% describing resistance as “only a little.” Most respondents reported solid results from their social media efforts – especially increased website traffic and positive audience feedback — with only 10% noting audience response as “indifferent.”

A majority of respondents reported adding video/audio/mobile content and scannable codes with a smaller percentage mentioning games, contests and interactive exhibits. Most respondents measure results via website analytics with more than half also tracing influence and press/media coverage.

Full results of the live survey follow:

1. To what extent have you encountered resistance within your organization around adopting digital and social platforms?
• Only a little (35%)
• Some (30%)
• None (26%)
• A lot (9%)
2. How have your audiences responded to your technology programs?
• Positively (62%)
• Mixed (29%)
• Indifferently (10%)
• Negatively (0%)
3. Do you consider your organization to be well-suited for enhancements of the museum experience through the implementation or expansion of any or all of the following technologies?
• Video content (41%)
• All of the above (35%)
• Audio tours or content for mobile devices (29%
• Interactive experiences around exhibits (29%)
• None of the above (12%)
• Virtual tours (12%)


4. What types of technology-based programs have you implemented at your institution?
• Video content (56%)
• Enhanced content (38%)
• Scannable codes (for example, QR codes) (38%)
• Games or contests (25%)
• Virtual or interactive exhibits (25%)
• Other (19%)
• Virtual tours (19%)
• Augmented reality (6%)
• None of the above (6%)
• Way-finding and location awareness (0%)
5. In what areas have you seen the best results using social media and digital communications?
• Increased website traffic (75%)
• Positive audience feedback (63%)
• Increased social media influence (63%)
• Partnerships with peer organizations or businesses (31%)
• Increased admissions (25%)
• Press or media exposure (19%)
• Stronger sponsorships or funding (6%)
• Other (6%)
• None of the above (0%)
6. How are you measuring your results?
• Website analytics (94%)
• Social media monitoring and influence measurement tools (56%)
• Press or media coverage (56%)
• Tracking fan activity in online communities (25%)
• Online surveys or feedback via your website (25%)
• Coded offers (19%)
• Staff time spent (6%)
• Revenues (including donations and grants) (6%)
• Other (6%)
• Increased revenues (0%)

Date City Venue
June 28, 2012 New York CommunicatingTheMuseum
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