There’s a temptation to think that audiences are loyal only to you and your art form. It’s true that we all have an active fan base or regular customers however, using ticketing data drawn from cultural venues throughout Scotland we can see what being an arts and culture ‘attender’ or ‘booker’ in a household really means.
When we track the arts attending behaviour of over half a million households in Scotland this data confirms a pattern seen across the sector from museum and art gallery visitor to performing arts attender. It shows that audiences are frequently disloyal, promiscuous, primarily event and artist led.
For example, although members of the audience may appear in your own database many times, that does not mean they are loyal just to you, your venue or art form. We see that when a household appears in your customer database, the same one also turns up in the database of attenders in another cultural organisation or venue. There is also more crossover witnessed in cities where there is more opportunity to take part or when there’s great deal going on or available in a short space of time, such as during a local arts festival. Knowing what else your audience does, indicates the significance of the crossover between audiences, highlighting the opportunities for collaborative cross promotion for mutual benefit.
Q: What other art forms are musical theatre audiences most likely to attend?
In this sample of musical theatre attenders just over 40% had attended ballet and dance, with a significant proportion also enjoying jazz, classical music, live literature / poetry, ‘other music’ and ‘other theatre’ indicating that people have eclectic tastes and interests that are not just confined to musical theatre.
Strategies to encourage audience growth might include:
- Group incentives: focussing on increasing the number of tickets/products bought per transaction;
- Referral incentives: focus on increasing advocacy and reward referrals;
- Loyalty incentives: recognise frequency of attendance