- Date: 14 August 2012
- Artform: All
- Area: South East
An event to launch Arts Nation identified four support needs amongst regularly funded organisations in the East of England. These were:
A programme with three strands was proposed:
A researcher worked with organisations to help them understand the potential uses of external and internal data. Surgeries were tailored to each individual organisation's current knowledge and use of data. Where an organisation could provide customer postcode data for the last three years, they were provided with a Mosaic profile and maps of their data.
The surgeries took half a day each for preparation, and a day for the workshop and post-workshop advice. The findings from all individual workshops were analysed to identify any common issues.
Under expert guidance, a project manager recruited a group of 'shoppers' from the region whose profiles reflected those of the two key target segments. Recruitment was intended to be achieved through the use of PR and social media but it was found necessary to use commercial recruitment firms.
The Project Manager developed a welcome pack and delivered a training programme for the Mystery Shoppers. An on-line resource was created to capture and analyse responses. 'Shoppers' were not paid and in order to get the full customer experience, had to purchase their own tickets, but were able to claim these back along with other expense. By June 2011, 10 organisations had received a total of 68 visits from mystery shoppers.
The scoring of the shoppers was designed in a way that will not only allow individual organisations to measure their progress over time but will also allow benchmarking within and between regions.
Members of the public with demographics that reflect the Dinner and a show and Family and community focused segments were recruited to take part in workshops and were paid to attend (£100, including expenses). The workshops provided an opportunity for organisations to learn more about what the two priority segments thought of the organisation's programming and communication.
Of 32 organisations targeted 25 took part in at least one strand of the programme.
19 organisations received data surgeries, 10 participated in the mystery shopper programme and 10 in the qualitative workshops.
The training, process and scoring framework developed for use by Mystery Shoppers may have application more widely and could provide a national standard.
The data surgeries were valued by those organisations who received them and this approach may suggest a model for future delivery.
Projects involving understanding data are a hard sell and considerable effort was required to communicate the benefits of this project to the organisations.
Of 19 organisations that participated, 10 responded to a follow-up survey:
At the time of writing the mystery shopping programme was still running. Further learning will be added in late 2011.