Engaging Your Audience Through Online Technologies: Session 2


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Presented at the Museums in Conversation Conference, April 15, 2013, Syracuse, NY. This presentation covers a more in-depth overview of some of the specific technologies you can use in the museum.

For PDFs of print materials developed for this conference and links to research conducted for this presentation, please visit http://engagingyouraudience.wordpress.com

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  • GENDER:Answer Options Response Percent Response CountFemale 53.5% 114Male 43.7% 93Other 0.5% 1Rather not say 2.3% 5
  • 83.3% White. Comment about “hispanic.” Should have indicated where categories came from – ie US Census Bureau.
  • Facebook wasn’t a surprise at 72.7% usage, but Pandora and Trip Advisor were, as was the relatively low usage of Twitter (and poor Weebly!)
  • GIANT! Surprises: high interest in online exhibits, digitization, and audio, paper, and guided tours. Museum website use is revealing. Very little support for QR codes – more support for apps.
  • 46 people of the 213 left comments. Of those, a majority were negative. Most were concerned with: the exlusionary elitism of smart phones, digital divide, and threats to brick and mortar museums by online offerings.
  • The positive ones reinforced some of our beliefs: that expanding online offerings can help expand audience.
  • Kerry – MarketingOur mailing budget was: 2800 for ghhn, plus an additional 1600 for DHP mailing related expenses.
  • The cost is a scaleable for how large your mailing list is. Our mailing list is in the 500- 2500 range, so we pay $250 for a year. If your mailing list is smaller than 500, a year is $126. The archive module is 5 dollars a month. That means constant contact hosts a web version of every email we send out. We put the link to everything we send out on our website. Constant Contact will host a site of all your emails for you for an additional cost, but it’s as easy as copy and pasting the link, so I’d rather keep people on our site. We have about 2-5 events open at any time– workshops and our Behind the Scenes networking events. That works out to 210 for 12 months. We’re tax exempt, so it works out to be about 600 a year for it. The cost per month can vary depending on if you go down a threshold in events and there’s an option to prepay for 6 months (save 20%) or 12 months, save 30%.
  • Our postal budge has obviously decreased. We have no postage budget for ghhn. We have a line in the DHP budget only for postage for 800. We merged it with another budget line for printing and photocopying and use that for handouts for programs and if we need to print flyers for conferences , etc. We use quickbooks for membership renewals—so that’s all electronic. People can sign up for membership on our website, which eliminates the need for a membership brochure. I love the online registration module—it’s easy to create an event, the registration page looks the same as the event page– constant contact hosts it and I can link directly to it from our website. Previously, flyers went out advertising the event and people filled them out and sent them back in. We send out all program information in our monthly blasts and the quarterly newsletter and we advertise for them on our website—in three places: on the homepage, under highlights; on the GHHN workshop page and on the DHP page. If you click the register link, you’re taken to the Constant Contact hosted page and you register from there. I can manage it from the back end then and see how many people have registered or print a list of who has yet to pay, etc. There are over 400 templates to choose from. We picked three– we have one we use for the monthly blasts, one for the newsletter and one for special events or breaking news—information that can’t wait to be sent, ie what we sent out in terms of resources after Sandy. (once I got power). We try to send information out on a schedule. The blasts go out monthly, usually the first Friday of the first full week. If we have another blast coming out – like this month with the Connecting to New York’s Collections blast, we will stagger it. So instead of going out on Friday, it went out on Tuesday. We had had a problem with people marking us as spam, so there’s a handy little ‘hi, you’re receiving this email because you signed up for it’ disclaimer that you can put at the top of the email. We started that a few months ago and havent been marked since. I suspect the problem was a spouse marking things as spam in a shared email account, but I can’t say for certain…In the next few slides I’ll show, you can see how it really is easy to use- drag and drop and type!The best part is the tracking. I can see who opens emails, who clicks on links and who forwards the email, which I consider a big indicator of success. When we do the eNewsletter, I use keep reading links at the end of the first paragraph to link to a pdf of the rest of the article– no one wants to keep scrolling down. So, we can see who clicks and reads the articles, which shapes what kind of content we put in. As with facebook, pictures are always important and we try to include either a logo or a photo in every block, just to break up the text.
  • GHHN Website was maintained by a web designerWebsite updates had to be emailed, one change in a numbered list. There were a lot of problems with some edits being made and other edits not being made. The issue was that we were a low priority client for the designer. He also was not a part of the organization, and so things were not updated after they had happened, which looks bad. Reflects poorly on your institution to have an out of date website.
  • Thanks to the way back machine of the internet archive…
  • I was sitting in the waiting room of the doctors office and received an email saying that I had put the wrong address on the website for a workshop--I was able to change the address from my phone in a matter of minutes. We owned the domain name– which we pay $12 a year for through register.comWe have email through web.com– we use gmail, but for professional reasons, we like to have our email go to ‘@greaterhudson.org’ and we pay 1.95/month for that. It automatically forwards to our gmail account. (23.40 a year)We also pay for the weebly Pro, which means I can customize the footer, so it doesn’t say ‘weebly’ and we have unlimited uploads and can play videos and audio files on the site. It’s $35/year.Our total a year is $70.40. It had been $1732 (hosting at web.com was $120/year and we had the $12 domain name and the web designer’s fee). That’s 1661 in found money.
  • Now they know you existEvidence suggests that it can increase foot traffic (also – have to think differently about audience – can now serve people who can’t physically visit) – give a few examples from HRVHNew research and scholarship; requests for use in books, TV shows, documentariesNew staff skills – 21st century skillsAlso:Reduce handling of originals (maybe)Reduce staff time answering questions (maybe)So now that we all agree that we should do this, how do you do it?....
  • One way it through collaboration.We’re better together. Saves costs at the local level – fewer servers, scanners, IT staffLearn from your colleagues – others who have been doing this for a whileDecisions regarding standards, best practices have already been determined. MACRO - Documentation already prepared (you’ll have to create internal documentation to manage project)Better for users – fewer information silos and it brings related, but physically disparate collections togetherGreat for small organizations with limited money, staff, time, and IT supportProgram vs. project
  • Mention hand-out with all 3Rs listed, the counties they serve, and services they provide. Mention that there are some differences in pricing and provided services.Start your own – mention HVVACC – IMLS funded.Talk about DPLA here and the importance of collaborating. Even if you go it alone, you will want to share with a larger aggregation so your resources will be available in DPLA.If you want to start your own collaborative or go it alone…here are some technology solutions…
  • Pretty significant costs associated with most of these. All of the NY collaboratives I just mentioned use CONTENTdm – a turn-key digital asset management system. It’s not cheap, but it’s very powerful.If you are using PastPerfect, there is an online component that costs extra, but is very reasonably priced (get what you pay for in some regards).
  • Open Source = Free as in puppies. I won’t spend time on the top 3 – they are beasts and require developer expertise. Omeka is probably the most user friendly right out of the box, especially for small organizations. I’m a big fan. It’s built on open standards.If you don’t have a webserver, you can have it hosted. There is a tiered pricing model and very reasonable. You’ll have to take the out of the box themes as they are.If you have a web server and you know some PHP and CSS you can do what you want with it.
  • Omekacombines a digital asset management system, a collection management system (you can describe resources without uploading a digital version), and a content management system (so you can build a website around it and create exhibits). Here is an example of an Omeka collection
  • Here is an example of an exhibit. This is the power of having an integrated DAM and CMS.
  • There are some other free do-it-yourself solutions, but consider sharing, too, for greater exposure and for DPLA harvesting.These options aren’t meant for managing digital objects, but can allow you to get content out on the web quickly and at no cost (above digitization costs).
  • Flickr - Quick and easy. Enter as much or as little info as you want. Allow users to comment/tag.
  • History Pin is a freely available social networking site around images. It’s based in the UK - Google is a partner. It’s map based and the idea is that you “pin” images to the map.
  • You can create what is called a channel which gives you a lading page. This is the channel for the Nyack Public Library. They also participate in HRVH.
  • Viewshare is a free tool available from the Library of Congress. It allows you to import data from an Excel file. Viewshare provides tools that allow you to create different ways for users to work with your data: simple lists, timelines, maps, faceted browsing. It will also create a search box for you.If you have the images in Flickr (or elsewhere on the web) you can link to them.Viewshare will host the data and the views for you. So you could simply link to them from your website. Or it will provide you with code that will allow you to embed the views right into your web site and allow users to interact with your data at your site.
  • I worked with a postcard collection to create two views in addition to some faceted browsing. Here is the list view hosted at Viewshare. I created the two facets to filter the collection.
  • This is a map view that I embedded on our website. Users can use the subject and location facets – if you click on Bridges as a subject the map will show you only the 6 postcards of bridges. You can click on the pin points to see a thumbnail image and some minimal info. Click on the link to see the full image/record in HRVH.
  • Just some guiding principles to wrap up here. No matter what approach you take….A well planned project will ensure successful implementation and completion. Enthusiasm important, but only gets you so far. You’ll want to have goals and objectives that are measurable and attainable so be realistic. Plan manageable projects. One of the free, get your content out there quickly may be all you can do right now.Document everything and make available to all.Communicate with your colleagues, board, members. Even if you are doing this on your own or with another person, everyone should be aware of what you are doing. Communicate with users – have to market your collection.
  • Engaging Your Audience Through Online Technologies: Session 2

    1. 1. Through Online TechnologiesSession No. 2
    2. 2. Sarah WassbergEducation Director & VolunteerCoordinatorHudson River Maritime Museum
    3. 3. • “Accessing Information From Museums in the Digital Age"• Used: Surveymonkey.com – basic paid plan.• Survey: 8 questions plus comment box at end• Time Frame: January 16th through March 26th, 2013• Collected: 213 responses• Results: Surprising
    4. 4. 34.7% ofrespondentswere under 4544.9% ofrespondentswere over 45
    5. 5. I find that people using electronic media in a museum spend a lot of time shuffling around without looking too carefully at the exhibits because they are fiddling with the devices or reading the devices (and getting in the way of those who are actually looking at the work). Seems to me that when organizations assume people allhave smart phones they are being a little elitist. I dont have one and have missed out on so many things----deals at stores, info at museums, etc---which have you just scan the square. Not everyone can. But that is just me who doesnt have one!
    6. 6. Sometimes it is just impossible to visit a museum in person. Anything that makes the collection available is helpful. Museums must embrace all technologies to remainrelevant to visitors. The challenge is in the application and funding. I definitely think it is a fabulous way for museums to connect with their public & especially with the youngeraudiences who rely heavily upon social media for any kindof information. I dont think that it should be the sole outlet for museums, however; I assume there are other people like me who dont check a social media site regularly.
    7. 7. • Survey your audience!• Keep it short, simple, and focused• Be prepared for surprise answers• Share the data you collect• USE the data you collect!
    8. 8. Kerry Durkin SclafaniRegional Coordinator/Archivist, DHPGreater Hudson Heritage Network
    9. 9. 2010: mailing budget is huge• Costs for postage for: • membership mailings • Flyers • Newsletter – quarterly: 1 large, 3 small • Program Announcements & Registrations• Costs for photocopying and ink for mailings• Addresses not always up to date + typos = a lot of wasted money
    10. 10. Costs• Financial• Time• Add-on Modules • Archive – $5/month • My Library Plus (unlimited image uploads) - $5/month • Event Registration Module – scalable for amount of events • Survey – for 1 month is $15.
    11. 11. • Easy to use!• Postal/Photocopy Budget significantly decreased• People can register (and pay!) online for events and workshops• Templates are professional looking and consistent• eBlasts/eNewsletters come out on a regular schedule • eBlast once a month • eNewsletter is quarterly and longer • In between – only if necessary- don’t want to overwhelm!• Tracking • Who opens emails • Who clicks • Who forwards – big indicator of success • Google Analytics- who visits our site from the email
    13. 13. Contact Info Calendar When you have Widget- long articles, Auto if you are only post the using event first paragraph. module, Save article as a otherwise, just type upcoming pdf, and upload events into a it to Constant block! Contact and then link to it— no one will keep reading if they have to constantlyAlways thank scroll downyour sponsors!(or donors &members!)
    14. 14. OverallstatisticsIndividualStatistics
    15. 15. Event Homepage (hosted by CC) Event Dashboard— Can see attendees, payment status, etc. Registration Page (you set fields)
    16. 16. First impressions are important!Needs to be easy to navigateSEARCH BAR!Updated frequentlyRelevant information• Address• Phone Number/Contact information• FAQs (parking, hours, etc.)
    17. 17. Cost: $1600/yrIssues: Website was not eye-catching Website was not updated quickly Website was terrible to navigate • Left sidebar seemed clean, but each had 4 or 5 dropdowns • Whenever you opened a page, a right sidebar also appeared which was very confusing • Information was hidden in the layers • No site map or search bar
    18. 18. • Weebly is a free, drag & drop website builder• Internet based-no software to download • Can be updated from any computer with internet access • Volunteers/Staff can update site from home, library, or smartphone!• Professional themes • Access to Creative Commons photographs- either free or $5 for professional photographs • Don’t need to know HTML, but can use HTML to further customize/add things (Flickr banner, Twitter feed, colored bars, etc.)• Photo galleries, slideshows, video and audio player• Custom Form Builder (we use for membership and for consultant registry)• Site is optimized for mobile viewing- looks just as good on your phone!• FREE HOSTING
    19. 19. Sean ConklinAssistant CuratorRegina A. Quick Center for the Arts
    20. 20. Technology Adopters &Your Desired Audience Getting SMART and PLUGGING-IN Sean Conklin, Assistant Curator - Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts at St. Bonaventure University
    21. 21. There is NO: If I Use It They Will Come Mentality concerning cultural institutions and your audiences
    22. 22. Technology Adopters INNOVATORS The first 2.5% of all those willing to adopt a new technology before hearing or reading reviews. They are generally considered venturesome and are highly sought after as trend setters and public promoters.
    23. 23. Technology Adopters EARLY ADOPTERS The next 13.5% of all those willing to adopt a new technology. They adopt early because they feel the technology is useful to their life. These individuals will recognize attempts made to integrate the technology they find useful into areas where it did not previously exist and are more likely to return to venues because of it.
    24. 24. Technology Adopters EARLY MAJORITY The next 34% of all those willing to adopt a new technology. These individuals will weigh the pros and cons of owning the technology before purchase. These individuals view technology as another life investment of money and time but once that investment is made they expect to see their technology preferences integrated into all areas of their life.
    25. 25. Technology Adopters LATE MAJORITY The next 34% of all those willing to adopt a new technology. These individuals often choose a new technology because “everyone else they know has one.” These individuals will often switch between early, late and laggard positions based upon their current life situations. They rely heavily on the opinions of innovators and early adopters and will only appreciate technology that has been in a location for an extended amount of time.
    26. 26. Technology Adopters LAGGARDS The final 16% of all those willing to adopt a new technology. These individuals often distrust new technology and may feel alienated by a rapidly changing society. These individuals also see new technology as a life investment but unlike the early majority see very little in the return on its use within their lives. Skeptical of the need for updates or alterations to technology they already are comfortable with these individuals will often attempt to extend technology beyond its useable life, reaching “Techdeath.”
    27. 27. So…What Is The Point? Many people see technology as the problem behind the so-called digital divide. Others see it as the solution. Technology is neither. It must operate in conjunction with business, economic, political and social systems. -Carly Fiorina
    28. 28. So…What Is The Point? TECHNOLOGY IS A WAY OF LIFE!
    29. 29. INNOVATORS - QR Codes QR CODESQuick Response Matrix barcodeBased on two or three dimensional character coding systemscomposed of a series of two tone dots or squaresReadable by: •QR enabled scanners •Mobile phones with a camera •Smart phonesNo license is required to create or employ QR Code •Denso Wave owns the patent right but has chooses not to exerciseDefined and published as an ISO standard
    30. 30. INNOVATORS - QR Codes Encodable Data  Numeric Only - Max Characters 7,089  Alphanumeric - Max Characters 4,296  Binary (8 bits only) - Max Characters 2.953  Kanji/Kana - Max Characters 1,817  QR Codes link metadata to singles within native applications so as to trigger a specific action  Coded with • Display Text • Contact Information/Digital Card • Wireless Network Connection • Web Page/Link • SMS Message
    31. 31. INNOVATORS - QR Codes CURRENT USES  Bridging the gap between print and on-line platforms  Gives users better access to mobile website • No wasted time searching • Eliminates user errors (ie.) spelling mistakes, dummy sites  Web considered limitless - Print is charge by the page/word • Maximum information presented in limited space  Competitive pricing in “service added value” • Users access external multiple media information not readably available in physical form
    32. 32. INNOVATORS - QR Codes EXAMPLES  Text Based - Exhibition Expansion
    33. 33. INNOVATORS - QR Codes EXAMPLES  Multi-Media Based - Museum Marketing & Outreach
    34. 34. INNOVATORS - QR Codes Implementation  Meet Your Audience  Are they bringing/using their own technology  Do you need to provide it?  Will they really use it?  Make Recommendation NOT Endorsements  Blend Your Media
    35. 35. EARLY ADOPTERS & MAJORITY WHY PANDORA?  Pandora is an Internet music-streaming site that allows users to freely create stations based on their favorite songs, artists or genres of music.  It’s stations are based purely on user interest and Pandroa’s connection to the MUSIC GENOME PROJECT  Makes Music “Digitally Sociable”  FREE!
    36. 36. EARLY ADOPTERS & MAJORITY PANDORA, WHY NOT?  It’s FREE!  User created stations  “People” Factor  Connect music to your exhibitions  Share with visitors Leave Active Burn After Playing
    37. 37. Jennifer PalmentieroDigital LibrarianSoutheastern New York LibraryResources Council
    38. 38. • Increase awareness• Increase audience• Increase use• Increase staff skills/expertise
    39. 39. • Shared infrastructure• Shared standards/documentation• Shared expertise• Greater exposure for your collection/organization• Better for users
    40. 40. • Hudson River Valley Heritage• Digital METRO• Long Island Memories• NY Heritage• Start your own
    41. 41. • CONTENTdm• PastPerfect-Online• LUNA Imaging• Content Pro
    42. 42. • Islandora• Hydra/Blacklight• D-Space• Omeka • Omeka.org (free to download) • Omeka.net (if you need hosting services - $$)
    43. 43. Viewshare.org
    44. 44. • Plan• Be realistic• Document• Communicate
    45. 45. Kara JeftsVisual Resources CoordinatorThe College of Saint Rose
    46. 46. • Identify• Analyze• Research• Organize• Share
    47. 47. • Narrowcast: Identify an audience• Make a personal connection Case example Face to Face: Comparing Portraits Metropolitan Museum of Art Case example Culture and Language Through Art Nassau County Museum of Art
    48. 48. • Analyze your collection • Reinvent your resourcesCase example50/50: Audience and ExpertsCurate the Paper CollectionThe Walker Art Center
    49. 49. • Share the learning process• Reveal successes and failures• Document! Document! Document Case example African American Close-Up Nasher Museum of Art, Duke University Case example The Brooklyn Museum of Art
    50. 50. • Find a voice• Be consistent• Bank your contentCase examplePlant TalkThe New York Botanical Garden
    51. 51. • Create a dialogue• Try something new• “Bring it home”Case exampleTeen Guide to ArtThe Brooklyn Museum