What motivates different kinds of people to visit, join, or donate to your museum? What jobs are people hiring your museum for; What progress does your organization help them make in their lives?

What prevents others from returning, renewing, or even considering your museum as a resource that they could hire to improve their lives?

How can you begin to structure your communications around the goals of those different audiences? How can you communicate unique value that will resonate with them?

These are the questions we address through audience research.

How we’ll help

We’ll work with you to define audience segments and uncover the underlying motivations that drive engagement across those constituencies. The process will include:

  • Short interviews with key stakeholders, which provide insight into:

    • How you may be segmenting your audience today

    • How you’re communicating with various segments (e.g., current members vs lapsed members)

    • Your metrics for success

    • Obstacles that may prevent your organization from communicating effectively

  • An examination of current marketing materials

  • Interviews of 5–10 individuals from each of the most valuable or promising segments of your audience. (We may also interview lapsed or disengaged segments to understand how they view your offerings and what your organization’s true competition is.)

We’ll work with you to develop insights from our research and help your team develop value propositions that will resonate with your constituents.


Who is this for?

If any of these sound familiar, you will likely benefit from our audience R&D services:

  • You’re planning a new initiative, and you’d like to understand its potential from the perspective of your intended audience.

  • You’re seeing low attendance for certain events, and you’re not sure what’s influencing people’s decision to visit.

  • You’ve been relying on surveys and signals from social media to gauge whether an event or program will be successful; These have not provided reliable insight into audience behavior.

  • Your team sometimes falls back on a “field of dreams” approach — “If we host it, they will come” — which has not been successful.

  • People tell you one thing in conversations, surveys, or focus groups but then behave in totally different ways; You’re not sure how you can get more reliable information.

  • Your staff sometimes operate on a trial-and-error basis when developing content or services, hoping something will “stick.”

  • You’re trying to get your board aligned around audience-focused institutional goals.

  • You’d like longer-term planning initiatives to be informed by a deeper understanding of your audience.

Find out more