Cultivating new audiences and strengthening bonds with current attendees is a top priority for most arts organizations. Audience research can advance those goals by helping you understand barriers preventing potential audiences from attending; discover potential points of engagement; develop more effective promotional materials;and assess progress toward audience-building goals. Even so, many orchestras shy away from research, often citing lack of money, time, or skills to carry it out. Drawing from a guide published by The Wallace Foundation, this webinar with marketing and research expert Bob Harlow demonstrated how research is helping organizations build audiences, with guidance on how to carry it out effectively, even on a small budget.
Presenter: Bob Harlow, Bob Harlow Research & Consulting, LLC
A webinar by Reimagining the Orchestra Subscription Model author Namita Desai is now available to view. The study by Oliver Wyman, commissioned by the League of American Orchestras, is the first of its kind for American orchestras Using the largest-ever orchestra sales dataset, it draws on ten years of data from four million customers across 45 orchestras of varying sizes, as well as a profile and preferences survey of 4,000 people who attended an orchestra concert in the last five years and a dynamic market simulation that tested the willingness-to-pay of 1,000 people making 10,000 purchasing decisions. The result is a compelling set of recommendations; in essence, the building blocks for future audience and donor development strategies.
Looking to engage and grow your audiences? Recent research from the Wallace Foundation reveals nine actions that deliver successful results for arts organizations. Arts-marketing researcher Bob Harlow hosts a free webinar for League members that unpacks best practices and case studies for growing new audiences. Harlow builds on The Road to Results: Effective Practices for Building Audiences, the popular session he presented at the League's 2015 Conference in Cleveland. He explores case studies of cultural organizations that are attracting growing numbers of young adults and other demographic groups that have proven challenging to attract—with a special focus on how arts organizations can build relevance with new audiences.
View for free! Register here to view the webinar.
Audience Participation Webinar
Two recent national studies, the National Endowment for the Arts 2008 Survey of Public Participation in the Arts, and the League’s Audience Demographic Research Review, offer statistically reliable national demographic information about audience participation. The findings raise both serious concerns and new opportunities for orchestras. They merit close attention from all who are concerned about the future of orchestras in America.
National Endowment for the Arts 2008 Survey of Public Participation in the Arts
Sunil Iyengar (bio), director, NEA Research & Analysis
The League’s Audience Demographic Research Review
Atul Kanagat (bio)
The League’s Audience Demographic Research Review was made possible in part by a generous grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Orchestra Lab: The Spring for Music Experiment
How can we have inventive, challenging programs that build audience interest and investment in local markets? Spring For Music (S4M,) the closest thing America has had to a national orchestra festival, presented 25 concerts, by 23 orchestras in annual week-long festivals in Carnegie Hall from 2011 – 2014. S4M became a how-to laboratory for building community to support artistically adventurous work. So what was learned from this experiment?
- how unusual programming affects critical reception and audience interest
- the kind of audience you get when you price every seat in the house at $25
- how some orchestras successfully built their Carnegie Hall appearances as a season-long vehicle to build community and support at home
Sponsored by Akustiks.
Daniel J. Hart, executive director, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra; Kathleen Carroll, president and CEO, Toledo Symphony; Thomas W. Morris, artistic director, Ojai Music Festival; James R. Oestreich, former classical music editor, and currently writing for the New York Times; Jesse Rosen, president and CEO, League of American Orchestras