Why exhibitions are important

More visitors thanks to hashtags, social media for cultural venues and poetic spam

Non-newsletter - No. 41, 07/2019

Question of the month
How do you get more visitors to the museum through hashtags?

Topic of the month
5 reasons why social media is important for cultural venues

Twitter of the month
Jay Hulme

Instagram of the month
notyourbackdrop

Tumblr of the month
Saw sawed!


Question of the month

How do you get more visitors to the museum through hashtags?

Just stick a few hashtags on the walls of an exhibition and more visitors will come? Some museums have already shown that the indiscriminate use of terms with a rhombus in front of them in exhibitions is not always well considered. But that showed that hashtags can also be consciously integrated into the concept of an exhibition Museu Nacional de Belas Artes (MNBA) in Rio de Janeiro. In the “Hashtags da Arte” exhibition, hashtags are even used as a basic concept for viewing art. A total of 40 works were selected for the show; Each of these works was then provided with a “typical Instagram description” instead of a classic object text.


Art for the Instagram generation

With its exhibition “Hashtags da Arte”, in German “The Hashtags of Art”, the National Art Museum in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, has succeeded in increasing its visitor numbers by a staggering 60%. What is special about the exhibition is that the conventional object labels on 40 works from the collection have been replaced with new labels. These are reminiscent of social media texts such as those used on Instagram - including hashtags. This small change, which was very easy and inexpensive to implement, actually met with great interest among young people. Suddenly, art in the museum was at eye level with the Instagram generation, it seems.

On its website, the museum writes that only 7.5% of Brazilians would go to the museum. At the same time, there is a very high level of use of social media among the population. Against this background, the question arose of how a museum can make art more attractive so that it fits more into people's (digital) realities.


Hashtag #outfitoftheday and #richlife

The aim of the museum was to “show a different, easy, fun and contemporary way of bringing art closer to people. The museum is thus adopting a language that people also use in their everyday lives, ”says Monica Xexéo from the MNBA. For example, portraits of rulers were tagged with the hashtags #lookdodia, #reidocamarote or # ostentação. The hashtags roughly correspond to internationally used terms such as #outfitoftheday, #richandfamous or #richlife.

Compared to the Rio Times the museum confirmed that the hashtag exhibit would primarily attract a younger audience. One of the main goals was to use “Hashtags da Arte” to reach precisely these new target groups who otherwise would not have been part of the museum's previous audience. The behavior in front of the works of art is now also completely different. So people laugh a lot at the hashtags and suddenly there is a relaxed atmosphere in the museum.

The exhibition, which opened in April 2019, has now been extended to February 2020 due to its great success.


Topic of the month

5 reasons why social media is important for cultural venues

Social media fulfill many functions for museums and other cultural institutions: the channels are used for marketing, potential visitors are provided with information about the institution and its content via social media and the platforms can even be used to improve the visitor experience on site. Based on current data collection, Colleen provides Dilenschneider know your own bone the top 5 most important factors why social media is more important for cultural institutions than ever before.


1) Social media plays an important role in encouraging a visit.

People can be strongly influenced by the recommendations of other people, especially if they come from close circle of family and friends. Much more trust is placed in these personal statements than when an institution advertises itself. In this context, social media are particularly important because people share their impressions here and use them to make recommendations - even when it comes to visiting cultural institutions.


2) Social media are an important source of information for potential visitors.

Visitors who do not regularly visit cultural institutions but are fundamentally interested in culture are potential visitors. Surveys have shown that this target group is very active online - especially on social media. Because of this, these potential visitors can easily be reached through social media to generate interest in a site visit. However, it is not enough for cultural institutions to simply be present on social media platforms. Rather, what counts is building a community in order to bind interested parties through communication, interaction and dialogue.


3) Social media followers are more likely to visit an institution than non-followers.

Anyone who has established a connection to a cultural institution online becomes a digital visitor - and maybe at some point a visitor on site. According to a survey carried out among 104 cultural institutions in the USA, 42% of social media followers emphasized that they would also like to visit the institution on site in the next few months. The results show that interest in an institution through contact via social media also results in an active intention to visit.


4) The existing loyalty via social media also improves the visitor experience on site.

A survey of visitors to 74 US cultural institutions found a higher level of customer satisfaction among social media followers. If the visitors are already familiar with the content of the mediation via social media, the on-site visit can also be perceived as more educationally valuable. Even if an institution was experienced online as friendly and communicative before the visit, this positive impression can have an impact on the perception of the real place. In this respect, online and offline presence are closely related and result in an overall picture.


5) Over half of the visitors also use social media on site.

Social media users use social media from cultural institutions not only as a source of information before a visit. (According to the survey, at least around 74%.) Almost 60% also use social media on site - directly in relation to their visit, for example to post a photo from the exhibition on Instagram. Over 7% of the visitors who used social media on site indicated a higher level of satisfaction in the survey. This shows that the smartphone in hand does not have to be a sign of distraction. It can also indicate that visitors are currently dealing more intensively with the content, for example by sharing their experiences with others via social media.


Twitter of the month

Jay Hulme

Our current recommendation goes to Jay Hulme and his Twitter thread about possible exhibition ideas. We would book the author and speaker from Leicester immediately to implement the following exhibitions:

  • "Strange hats from nobles, compared with similar looking objects"
  • "Objects that have belonged to gay historical figures, sorted according to the colors of the rainbow"
  • "Historical Representations of Jesus and Satan: Which Guy is Hotter?"
  • "Unrecognizable animals from medieval manuscripts and suggestions as to which animals could be meant"
  • “Historical doppelganger or real vampire? These paintings look like Keanu Reeves "
  • "Paintings of women who could kill you, along with the gun they would do it with"

Instagram of the month

notyourbackdrop

The selfie in the museum is ubiquitous today. The use of Instagram in exhibitions in particular has changed the behavior of visitors. But museums, galleries and pop-up institutions are also increasingly targeting the need for art-related selfies. One of them has had enough of it now - and ironically announces this displeasure on Instagram.

The account @notyourbackdrop, in German "not your background", proclaims in his Insta-Bio: "Because art is so much more than just a backdrop ... And you're blocking my view." No more selfie posers obscuring the view of art . Away with the museum visitors who are photographed in front of a work as a background. This message conveys this Instagram account, which simply removes the alleged art buffs from their photos. What remains is a white silhouette - which unfortunately still blocks the view of the art.


Tumblr of the month

Saw sawed!

For some it is simply spam - unsolicited e-mails that want to sell you something in bumpy German. For this Tumblr, however, it is a "secret poetry distributor". This poetry is so wonderful that it needs to be shared with the public:

  • "Bofende married half? Buckle it up! No dream? Anti-snoring. "
  • “Repentance and no more money for gifts. Don't you want your driver's license to be in danger? "
  • “All of my hair fell off the utility bill. I'm leaving my brain from the control room. "
  • "ZIEFER ALARM: protect the home. Insects, COAT! Scare them! FIGHT! "
  • “As with Films: have track followers. SOLUTION to follow everyone, anything. "

With this in mind: For more poetry in e-mail spam!



about the author

At mus.er.me.ku Angelika Schoder writes on topics related to digitization, museums and exhibitions as well as travel and culture tips.