Inspiring Audience Engagement at the Museum Council of Greater Philadelphia

Museum Hack
Renegade Tours

In June 2016, Dustin Growick attended the annual conference of the Museum Council of Greater Philadelphia.  Now in its 77th year, the Museum Council invited us to be their keynote speaker as they celebrate Philadelphia’s museums and discuss new ideas for engaging audiences.  We joined other outside groups to share our knowledge and expertise on attracting millennial audiences, while also inspiring Museum Council members with our tips and tricks for successful audience engagement.

Dustin Growick discussing Museum Hack
“Super cool presentation from Museum Hack at the @museumcouncil annual mtg! #itweetmuseums”

Before we got the party started, however, we held a VIP discussion group!  In a small group setting, we joined fifteen museum professionals to discuss museums and millennials.  Dustin facilitated the conversation, answering specific questions from museum professionals.  We also helped brainstorm new ways to address specific challenges that the museums were facing.

Dustin Growick leading a Hack Chat
“VIP portion of Annual Meeting! Great discussion about storytelling, relevancy with Dustin Growick of @MuseumHack.” Image courtesy Museum Council of Greater Philadelphia.

Next, we invited attendees of the Museum Council of Greater Philadelphia’s conference to discover how museums can use our best practices to create new experiences proven to increase audience engagement.  In our keynote address, Dustin explored how Museum Hack engages audiences – especially millennials – and utilizes guides, games, and gossip to turn museum experiences into museum adventures.  As Dustin demonstrated, our methods use personal passion, social and inquiry-based activities, and the powerful tools in guests’ pockets (smartphones) to actively engage guests with collections and each other.  Best of all, these methods can be put into practice immediately, transforming spaces, collections, and programs into dynamic, fun, and educational adventures.

Amelia Longo at MCGP conference
“When you try to act chill at the @MuseumHack talk but then THERE IS A TINY DINO UNDER EVERYONE’S SEAT!” Photo by Amelia Longo.

Attendees loved it!  Many left feeling inspired by our keynote, noting that the inclusion of actionable takeaways in addition to the more philosophical and logistical details of Museum Hack was much appreciated.

We are so grateful for the opportunity to connect with museum professionals and discuss audience engagement at the Museums Council of Greater Philadelphia’s annual conference.  The conference was a wonderful opportunity to discuss how museums can engage the next generation of museum patrons, taking us one step closer to making everyone fall in love with museums!

Do you work for a museum, or do you want to talk about engaging new museum goers? We would love to work with you. Find out more about our consulting work with museums, or email us to open up a conversation about working together.

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