One rule of writing we’ve always been told is to “write what you know.”
While that advice certainly has its place, it doesn’t really apply when your aim is to cultivate a variety of content that holds value for museum professionals across multiple fields and even departments.
Twitter – the unexpected place to be for museums and museum professionals.
It’s become such an important platform for facilitating museum communication that the American Alliance of Museums created the role of ‘Social Media Journalist’ at their annual conference to help keep conversation flowing, give unique perspectives, and curate content for those following along at home.
The museum had launched a new event series – Museums After Dark – with each event focused on its own unique theme.
Cape Fear wanted to ensure the first event of this year’s series was a huge success. Their goal? To encourage more visitors to come back throughout the year! To help achieve this, they called Museum Hack to help promote the event on social media.
The first event was all about outer space, which paired well with Cape Fear’s Space Place, an interactive exhibit designed to emulate the International Space Station.
The Museums After Dark series allows adults to kick back, relax, and enjoy an evening after hours in the museum.
Using Partnerships and The Power of Facebook To Get The Word Out
Cape Fear partnered with local bottling company, Bombers Bev. Co. and a local radio station for a free ticket giveaway. These efforts combined with other engagement tactics helped increase excitement and hype about Museums After Dark. Using these methods helps to extend the event before it starts and after it ends.
“It was very obvious Facebook marketing works. It just works.” – Amy Mangus, Public Relations Specialist, Cape Fear Museum
4X The Number Of Attendees Compared To Past Events
The effort paid off and pre-event excitement encouraged a record number of pre-sale tickets sold.
The museum saw four times the number of attendees compared to prior events, with more than half buying tickets online ahead of the event. About 25 percent of attendees bought pre-sale tickets on-site, including the day of after online buying closed.
All the cultivated excitement from the Facebook event led not only to a record number of pre-sale tickets, but amazingly engaged attendees! The Cape Fear crew came up with lots of space-themed activities for guests, like making snack satellites, creating egg parachutes, and designing Alka-Seltzer rockets.
Have you experimented with pre-sale tickets for your event? How did it work for you? We’d love to know more!
Social networking platforms like Facebook and Twitter have become a huge part of sharing our lives and connecting with family and friends — but these days, we use them to keep up with our favorite brands, businesses, and institutions, too!
It’s important in this fast-paced world to maintain a solid social media presence, and at Museum Hack, we know there’s more to it than a well-placed hashtag.
We’ve compiled some of our top tips for engaging with fans and followers on Facebook and Twitter to help get your museum’s social media game in tip-top shape!
Our friends over at the American Association for State and Local History recently reached into the past for some social media tips. Read about their findings below from AASLH’s Marketing Membership Coordinator Hannah Hethmon.
At AASLH, we don’t like to reinvent the wheel. We are constantly looking back through History News, Technical Leaflets, and old promotional materials to remember and rediscover all that the association has done over the last 76 years. Yesterday, we came across a 1967 Technical Leaflet called “Reaching Your Public: The Historical Society Newsletter.” To our surprise, much of the advice given in this newsletter how-to is just as appropriate for history organizations on social media. It starts with this timeless challenge:
Pinterest isn’t just for wedding planning or finding great new DIY crafts. Although it may seem like there’s not much for museums on the platform, a closer look shows that some institutions (both big and small) are creatively curating on the site to reach Pinterest’s more than 150 million active monthly users. We’ve rounded up some of the most interesting Pinterest boards from museums of all sizes to help inspire you.
Many museums already face a bit of an uphill climb when it comes to attracting and engaging new audiences. When state budget constraints closed the Illinois State Museum for nine months, museum officials knew they needed some fresh new ideas to regenerate interest in the museum once its doors were reopened.
The museum is home to collections and exhibits that focus on the natural, cultural, and artistic history of the state. Prior to the shutdown, the museum had run a string of successful special event Saturdays. After reopening, staff was eager to revive the series that had been a long-time staple of their community in Springfield, Illinois.
While museums attempt to connect people to the past, we don’t want to lose sight of the present and future. While a big part of the museum experience traditionally requires visitors being physically present to see exhibits and collections, audience engagement is no longer dependent on actually being in the museum. Social media gives organizations the freedom to extend the museum experience to a digital space and break down the physical walls, offering the opportunity to create their own communities of museum-lovers.
Instagram is one of our favorite choices to help bring the museum experience to life outside the museum. Museums typically rely on visual storytelling to present their collections to visitors and Instagram mimics this same ability to communicate visually with followers. With over 300 million daily active users, Instagram is a key outlet for reaching out to existing and potential audiences. Even better? 18-29 year olds make up the largest demographic of internet users who also use Instagram, which makes it a great option if you’re trying to draw in younger visitors.
As a museum professional, you know reaching new museum audiences can be a marketing challenge. But before you even get to connecting with them, you need to understand the platforms and tools at your disposal — social media and Facebook marketing can be challenging to work with. Museum Hackhas been involved in museum marketing since we started in 2013 and we know there are a few key things can help you clear an effective path and grow your museum audience.
The growth of Facebook over the past few years has been phenomenal and it continues to grow every day. According to Facebook, there are over 1.71 billion monthly active users and 1.13 billion of these are daily active users of the social network. This means around 66% of Facebook users visit Facebook daily. Museum Hack knows that effective targeting and ad delivery can help engage these users and increase your results online and in your museum.