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AAM 2017 Digital Strategy in Action


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Slide deck from AAM 2017 session on May 7, 2017.
Session title: Digital Strategy in Action: From Planning to Doing
Mark Osterman, Guiding Programs Manager, Vizcaya Museum and Gardens
Douglas Hegley, Chief Digital Officer, Minneapolis Institute of Art
Tatum Walker, Associate Director of Digital Strategy, Ford's Theatre Society

Session Abstract:
Cultural heritage organizations develop digital strategies to outline philosophies, goals and objectives for the effective use of technology. In this session, three museums - at varying points of implementation - share methods and outcomes of the digital strategy process. Panelists represent a cross-section of museums (art, history, horticulture) and departments (education, communications, digital/IT), providing multiple points of view on how to identify, prioritize and implement digital initiatives that align with strategy. We’ll discuss institutional challenges, practical and technical constraints, and share examples of digital visitor engagement - aiming to inspire colleagues to apply digital strategy effectively at their organizations.

Published in: Technology
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AAM 2017 Digital Strategy in Action

  1. 1. Digital Strategy in Action: From Planning to Doing Sunday May 7, 2017 1:00 - 2:15 pm
  2. 2. Introductions
  3. 3. Mark Osterman Adult Learning and Engagement Manager
  4. 4. Tatum Walker Associate Director of Digital Strategy @walke328
  5. 5. Douglas Hegley Chief Digital Officer Minneapolis Institute of Art @dhegley This digital strategy needs some serious analysis Image source:
  6. 6. Act One Strategy
  7. 7. Vision Mission Strategy Action Plan Image Source:
  8. 8. Image Source:
  9. 9. Pros Advantages and Opportunities Digital Strategy ● Emphasizes the transformative power of digital ● Enhances institutional buy-in ● Aligns digital efforts ● Provides clarity & transparency ● Ensures relevancy & long-term success of digital ● Recognizes digital as a dynamic, speciality area ● Helps manage expectations ● Provides language and perspectives to support funding and partnership opportunities
  10. 10. Digital Strategy ● Confirms that digital is separate, in a silo ○ Someone else’s job ○ not core to mission ● Unnecessarily complex ● Sounds self-justifying (or even defensive) ● Looks really, really expensive ● Implies that digital is merely a series of projects Cons Potential Pitfalls
  11. 11. Digital Strategy for your Organization? Will depend on: Readiness The organization The people
  12. 12. Digital Strategy for your Organization? Will depend on: Readiness The organization The people The quality of the plan Relevance Flexibility
  13. 13. Digital Strategy for your Organization? Will depend on: Readiness The organization The people The quality of the plan Relevance Flexibility Implementation Communication Roll-out Ongoing utilization
  14. 14. Readiness via the Digital Strategy Maturity Model An honest look in the mirror Not a value judgment Guides understanding Where does your org stand? How does that impact your approach to digital? Mirror, c. 1775, Unknown artist, United States, Minneapolis Institute of Art, Gift of James F. and Louise H. Bell in memory of James S. and Sallie M. Bell, 31.18.3
  15. 15. Digital Customer Experience Excellent … meh … Adapted from Forrester Research Inc (2014) Digital Operational Excellence HighLow
  16. 16. Digital Connector Digital Master Digital Dinosaur Digital Operator Digital Customer Experience Excellent meh … Adapted from Forrester Research Inc (2014) Digital Operational Excellence HighLow Image Sources: content/uploads/2015/03/head-buried-in-sand.jpg
  17. 17. ● To help evolve the museum’s digital ecosystem to a connected network of platforms, frameworks and tools to create dynamic, high-impact digital experiences for all our visitors both online and onsite. ● To build staff knowledge and awareness of the potential technology has. ● To help set clear goals, strategies and guidelines for how technology should be considered. ● To use as an advocacy tool to build staff awareness about accessibility and the role technology can play in enhancing access. ● To avoid diluting digital strategies within other larger strategic documents that staff are not engaged in. Why a Digital Strategy at Vizcaya?
  18. 18. Why a Digital Strategy? Our Long Range Plan makes clear that the organization needs to broaden its impact and that digital provides an opportunity to do so. The Digital Strategy answers two questions: How should Ford’s Theatre use digital media to support our Long Range Plan? What will it take to get there?
  19. 19. Digital Connector Digital Master Digital Dinosaur Digital Operator Digital Customer Experience Excellent meh … Adapted from Forrester Research Inc (2014) Digital Operational Excellence HighLow Image Sources: content/uploads/2015/03/head-buried-in-sand.jpg
  20. 20. Act Two Where are we now?
  21. 21. ● Tell Vizcaya’s Story ● Promote Access ● Engage Audiences Digital Guiding Principles
  22. 22. ● Vizcaya sparks dialog with audiences by emphasizing interpretation by people, for people. ● Vizcaya digitally documents, preserves and promotes its institutional legacy. ● Vizcaya’s content is universally accessible. ● Vizcaya fosters partnerships for digital development and learning. ● Vizcaya identifies, measures and inspires passion in its audiences. ● Vizcaya produces media-rich interpretive content that’s timely, interactive and multi- purpose. Digital Goals
  23. 23. Our Long-Term Digital Values Sustainability. We bite off just as much as we can chew. Be Compelling. If it doesn’t inspire our staff and Board, it won’t inspire our audiences or peers. Mission-critical. Every digital initiative is clearly tied to our organizational goals. Momentum Building. To effect change, we balance quick wins with long term plans. Measurable. Data helps guide our efforts, and holds us accountable. People-centric. We prioritize the needs of staff and audiences, over technology for its own sake.
  24. 24. Jean-Leon Gerome, The Carpet Merchant, c. 1887, Minneapolis Institute of Art, 70.40
  25. 25. Mia2021 Strategic Plan
  26. 26. Deepening Relationships
  27. 27. ● Collaborative team environment ● Shared goals ● Aligned with strategic plan ● Workplace culture, applied ● Empowerment @dhegley
  28. 28. Act Three Methods, such as: Prioritization Project Management Stakeholder involvement
  29. 29. ● Digital Strategy was put into the Learning Division with cross departmental collaboration through institutional task forces that include the Interpretive Planning Taskforce and the Technology Task Force. ● Task forces advise the museum about the opportunities and challenges posed by the rapidly evolving media and technology fields. This structure decentralizes digital efforts and integrates them throughout the museum divisions Project Management
  30. 30. Project Management - Digital Strategist ● Lead the development and implementation of an institutional digital strategy, ensuring a holistic plan across all museum departments and digital initiatives. ● Ensure that Vizcaya is true to its mission and institutional priorities by sharing its many resources – its collections, its history, its interpretive programs with local and global audiences. ● Explore the full potential of digital technologies to build and enhance engagement with existing audiences, develop new audiences, strengthen the Museum’s brand, increase accessibility and build awareness of Vizcaya as a cultural and educational resource.
  31. 31. ● Vizcaya Museum and Gardens convened artists, technology innovators, museum staff and other cross- pollinators to explore and discuss the role technology can play in advancing Vizcaya’s digital objectives, needs and guiding principles. ● This group evolved into the Technology Advisory Committee Vizcaya Technology Advisory Committee
  32. 32. Access as Priority for Digital Initiatives ● Vizcaya is a National Historic Landmark that strives to meet accessibility laws and internal goals, but is also greatly challenged with accessibility for its diverse visitors. ● Vizcaya is not a purpose built space. Providing access in ways that preserve the character of the historic institution requires creativity and collaboration among staff. ● We are intent on experimenting with technology to help offer greater access (physical and intellectual) opportunities to all of our visitors. ● “Constraint as an impetus for innovation.” Sina Bahram
  33. 33. Organizational Structure Digital Strategy was put into Communications and Marketing with cross departmental collaboration through digital committees to break down silos.
  34. 34. Approach Collaborate Designed to get departments collaborating and thinking digitally Meets like a human-centered design workshop Empower Focused monthly themes Empowering staff and building self-efficacy with digital - lots of documentation and capacity building
  35. 35. Project Management Each project may have a different project manager Entire team discusses the value and role of digital to the project Current Projects Social Media - Social Media Manager Website - Associate Director of Digital Strategy CRM - Database Administrator and Director of Communications and Marketing Visitor Experience - Cross team Accessibility - Associate Director of Visitor Services
  36. 36. Who owns digital?
  37. 37. We all do!
  38. 38. Prioritization The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing - Steven Covey Image Source: , quote added
  39. 39. 46 High High (Hard) Low Low (Easy) Importance, Via STRATEGY Difficulty, via practical REALITY Decision-Making © Douglas Hegley 2014
  40. 40. © 47 Cool Blue Do a select few Seek funding & partners (We wish we could do them all) Risk: Too many at once (saying yes to everything) Red Flag Do only if necessary Stop! (or proceed with extreme caution) (We wish we could have none) Risk: Bogs down & exhausts resources Green Light Do these fast Make a prioritized list, get moving (We wish there were fewer) Risk: Resources pulled away from Cool Blue Gray Fog Do only if there are resources “Busy work” or dreamy distractions (We wish we had more time) Risk: People fall into it , esp. in times of stress High High (Hard) Low Low (Easy) Importance, Via STRATEGY Difficulty, via practical REALITY Decision-Making © Douglas Hegley 2014
  41. 41. Mia: The TDX Project
  42. 42. Thomas Struth “Audience 1 (Galleria Dell Accademia), Florenz”, 2010.51.2, Minneapolis Institute of Art
  43. 43. Establish a modern approach Engage audiences via digital platforms Provide moments of delight - Social interaction - Informal learning
  44. 44. Source:
  45. 45. Source:
  46. 46. Tell Stories with Digital (it’s great for storytelling) Layered content Self-guided Hyperlinked Evolving
  47. 47. Writing Workshops Professional writing consultation from Kris Wetterlund, helped inform:
  48. 48. Act Four Outcomes
  49. 49. Digital Engagement & Customer Experience Does this digital stuff matter? How is it measured? Case studies
  50. 50. ● Use technology to make Vizcaya’s existing resources more accessible (universal design) for dynamic learning. ● Use technology to better understand our audience and their needs. ● Use technology to invest in digital production and dissemination infrastructure. ● Integrate digital strategies into our institutional strategic and interpretive plans. Desired Outcomes
  51. 51. ● Phase out Vizcaya’s video of second floor decorated rooms. ● Transition to an active visitor-centered experience. ● Enhanced accessibility and inclusion for diverse audiences and allows access to the second floor and non-accessible areas of the gardens. ● ADA compliance through proper kiosk design, appropriate installation and site preparation, and accommodating software application development. Outcomes - Virtual Access Tour
  52. 52. Outcomes - Virtual Access Tour Design
  53. 53. Outcomes - 3D Documentation Adapting 3D documentation technologies to create interactive experiences that expand the community’s access to our collections and increase opportunities for discovery.
  54. 54. ● Bridging established preservation technologies with interpretive digital technologies. ● Innovative approach to conservation, accessibility and interpretation. Outcomes - 3D Documentation (cont.)
  55. 55. Outcomes - Better Understand our Audience GPS Visitor Mapping Project
  56. 56. Outcomes - GPS Visitor Mapping Project What can this do? •Inform Interpretive Strategy • •Improve Visitor Flow • •Identify Future Wi-Fi Connectivity Hotspots What can’t this do? •Provide precise data inside the house • •Demonstrate intent or sentiment • •Automate easy data answers Tools: Five Pre-paid iPhone 5s Devices, Trails Pro App, Google Drive, Google Docs, Google Earth, QGIS Time Spent: House 1/3 Gardens 2/3 Average 2:14 Maximum 3:35 Minimum 52
  57. 57. Website Redesign Challenges to address: Clarifying our identity Ticketing process Engage audiences in our stories
  58. 58. Website Outcomes
  59. 59. Evaluating Digital People: Use it Together Time Stories Art
  60. 60. Act Five Challenges
  61. 61. Challenges Practical constraints Change is hard The courage to pivot when needed When non-techies are the decision-makers
  62. 62. The widespread use of touchscreens is problematic for those with impaired vision. Moving Forward: ● Visitor controlled contrast adjustment for the displays. ● Alternate display mode with larger fonts with large widely spaced controls. ● Alternatives to the visual display such as descriptive auditory experience. Challenges - Virtual Access Tour
  63. 63. The Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) develops strategies, guidelines, and resources to help make the Web accessible to people with disabilities. WACG3 ● Alternative Text for Images - rendered visually, auditorily, tactilely, or by any combination. ● Keyboard Input – not reliant on mouse, but assistive technologies. ● Transcripts or Podcasts. Challenges - Website and Virtual Online Tour Needs
  64. 64. ● How to integrate Universal Design to increase accessibility and inclusion for diverse audiences (audio description)? ● How to create visitor-centered and developmentally appropriate experiences? ● How to capture visitor data to further improve and enhance the visitor experience? ● How to enhance visitor wayfinding experience? ● All of this is: expensive, high maintenance, requires staff training – new expertise. Challenges - Digital labels, kiosks, Apps
  65. 65. ● Know the Law: Make sure staff understand which accessibility laws apply and what is required for compliance. ● You can’t do it alone. Requires commitment and involvement from leadership across the enterprise. ● Make an Interpretive Accessibility Policy. Accessibility succeeds when it comes from the top down and sets clear guidelines. ● Budget for Accessibility. Accessibility doesn’t happen by accident. It takes effort, time, and money. ● Build Accessibility into Your Workflow. Accessibility should never be an afterthought. Challenges - Awareness for Technology and Accessibility
  66. 66. Staying Visitor Centered Pressure from funders drive project decisions. Rapid prototyping and visitor research should be the center of all decisions. What works for one institution doesn’t work for all institutions.
  67. 67. Tactics ≠ Strategy Roadmaps need to be living documents. The best laid plans are hard to pivot. Ultimately, someone needs to be the decision-maker.
  68. 68. Digital Productivity High Low Executive Leadership Involvement None - Ignoring Demanding without understanding Learning Prioritizing and Empowering Controlling Micro-managing Hovering
  69. 69. Digital Literacy for Leadership And leadership literacy for digital - it’s a two-way street Digital: Train your current leadership with helpful digital knowledge Leadership: Train your digitally-savvy staff about strategy, management, and decision-making
  70. 70. Digital Literacy is about Learning Image source:
  71. 71. Questions & Discussion Image source:
  72. 72. Thank you