Presence – Where is your organization present online? Do you have a website? What about a Facebook page? Are you on LinkedIn? What does your presence (or your absence) communicate to people? Is your presence active or passive? What difference does that make in how you are perceived within those environments?Content – What do you say in these environments? What do you share with your visitors, fans, friends, or followers? What does this content communicate to people? Voice – How do you communicate with people in online environments? What is the tone of your communication? Do you sound like a human being or like a company? What does your choice of language, humor, formality, etc. convey to people who find you online? Is this what you or your organization delivers in person?
No matter what your goal is – fundraising, selling tickets, or raising awareness – it starts with connecting with people. But you can’t connect with people if they don’t trust you. Finding your online voice helps you foster trust in the people you want to reach.Many popular online spaces are personal. On Facebook, your patron is sharing with her friends and family, her high school and college friends, and colleagues. You have an opportunity to be more personal with many more of your patrons than ever before. Finding your online voice encourages people to invite you in.Your online voice can humanize your organization. Some people find particular arts organizations intimidating. If you work for a long-established institution, like a major museum or orchestra, you may find that a distinct but natural online voice can soften that image, if you want.most arts marketing writing is interchangeable.We write about our organizations the way we do because that’s what everybody else does. We look around at what we believe are the more successful organizations, and model our brochure or web copy after theirs. Makes sense, right? The result is that your organizational voice becomes bland – indistinguishable from the theater down the street or the concert hall across town.
How can you find out?
Who Do You Think You Are? Assessing Your Digital Identity Presented by David Dombrosky Carnegie Mellon’s Center for Arts Management and Technology October 2, 2010
On sheet of paper, write down 3 adjectives that describe the personality of yourself as an artist, your agency, or your arts organization.
Do I have a volunteer? (Don’t worry. We’re just gonna look at your website.)
Elements of Digital Identity Presence Content Voice
Why is your online voice important? Helps foster trust in the people you want to reach Encourages people to invite you in Humanizes your organization Distinguishes you from your competitors
Taking Stock of Your Digital Identity - Presence List the your digital channels for communication and the sites where you have a presence Identify the conventions and best practices for those channels and sites Ask your audience where they hang out online. Are you there, too? If not, why not?
Taking Stock of Your Digital Identity - Content What items do you share or publish online? Categorize and document the frequency with which you publish or share each type of content Which categories appear to be trending? Are those content types enhancing the artist experience or merely promoting it? Do you share the same content or different content across platforms?
Taking Stock of Your Digital Identity - Voice What kind of language do you use in your online communications? Do you modify your tone and use of language from platform to platform? Does the way you talk about the content match up with the personality traits you have identified for you or your organization?
Balancing Professional and Personal Online Identities
David Dombrosky email@example.com www.twitter.com/DDombrosky Technology in the Arts www.technologyinthearts.org firstname.lastname@example.org www.twitter.com/TechInTheArts Center for Arts Management & Technology http://camt.artsnet.org