The three case studies shared in this transcript from AMA conference 2012 offer inspiration for combining marketing and programming to maximise audience engagement.
Matthew Lawton: National Theatre Wales
My first ever day at National Theatre Wales (NTW) was to attend the AMA Conference in Leicester so it's good to be back here three years later to tell you about our progress.
NTW has no education and outreach department as such. Our ethos is that community engagement should be at the heart of everything we do. When forming the company, we thought for a long time about what a national theatre company would look like if it was co-owned and co-authored by the people of the nation. Could every ticket holder be a stakeholder in the company, and how could we involve and engage with communities on a much deeper level than ever before?
At the core of NTW’s Communication strategy is the importance of networks. We launched the company with its own social network in 2009, months before we put in place our website or the announcement of any artistic work.
The focus of building key networks is to engage people in a community building approach as opposed to a ‘sales driven’ one. This in turn would generate mass ownership and participation, a sense of belonging and pride to our new organisation NTW. Through these networks we hoped to multiply each marketing initiative tenfold.
The aim was to maximise these networks in order to have a wider impact and reach on potential audience, individual participation and levels of engagement than traditional marketing and communications methods alone.
The name we gave to this idea of building self-supporting 'community networks' engaged in the activity of the company is TEAM. We could never have planned just how much influence TEAM has had on the whole organisation and how much the idea has now grown into something much bigger.
In a nutshell, NTW TEAM is a Wales-wide community network which engages with all levels of NTW's activities. It is rooted in a model of local community leadership.