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Boston Museum of Fine Arts’ Marketing Challenges Case Study


The Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) in Boston is one of the most prominent exhibit sites. However, there are some issues that it faced at the time the case study report was issued. The MFA made several attempts to reconsider its strategies and create new marketing goals that would boost its development and popularity. However, some of the ideas appeared to be quite controversial, as visitors found several exhibits to be different from the museum’s original direction. Restructuring organization and services is a must for the MFA’s competitive advantage.

Key Challenges

The primary challenge facing the MFA is the gradual decrease in the number of visitors. After the 1990s, which had been a time of art’s popularity in American society, the industry fell under the series of adverse economic events. The terrorist attacks of 9/11, combined with the stock market collapse, caused the people’s inability to spend money on entertainment. However, the number of visitors has been falling ever since. Besides, the MFA experienced a shortage of sponsors. Many private corporations that used to have their headquarters in Boston were bought by larger companies based in other states. The MFA lost contact with decision-makers of those organizations, which made the fundraising task more difficult.

Target Markets

Since the MFA is a museum, it presents interest to the two groups of customers: local and tourist visitors. Each group has both similar and different requirements. Tourists tend to visit the MFA on purpose, as they often plan their trip and are unlikely to make changes on the go. Local citizens view museums as a place for spending a weekend. Both groups include people who seek the art experience specifically, sometimes with scholarly interest and those who perceive the MFA as a commonplace for entertainment. This fact sometimes causes varying opinions regarding exhibitions that do not fall under the concept of fine arts.

Value Equation

In my opinion, the value equation that the MFA provides includes the customer service combined with the quality of artworks, all of which are divided by the price quantity. Art is the primary service item that attracts visitors, so it must be unique and present educational and self-developmental interest. Since this museum is a very large place, it must offer proper navigation and infrastructure for people to feel comfortable. Finally, the price has to be affordable to a wide range of people. While museums like the MFA go through high expenses on internal processes, they should attract enough visitors to maintain optimal revenues.

Recommendations for Growth

The MFA’s experience shows that people are eager to visit exhibitions that are not necessarily associated with the primary specialization. This fact could mean that offering spectacular events with rich visual content, which contributes to mass culture, will work towards growing the number of visitors. After all, the concept of art is changing in the modern world, and contemporary pieces currently have more variety than famous masters’ artworks. However, the museum should not forget its original vision and purpose of bringing all sorts of artistic works to the audience. Classic collections should not be put away to fit the new items that often undergo a short period of hype and soon become forgotten.

Conclusion

The art industry is recovering from an extended period of recession, yet it has significant potential in the entertainment industry. The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston has discovered an excellent opportunity to attract people to its exhibitions by offering items associated with lifestyle and popular culture. It has also revisited its principles of customer service by making the territory more convenient for visitors. The project of constructing a new building that was mentioned in the case study corresponds well with the idea of restructuring to fit customer needs.

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1. IvyPanda. "Boston Museum of Fine Arts' Marketing Challenges." November 2, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/boston-museum-of-fine-arts-marketing-challenges/.


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IvyPanda. 2020. "Boston Museum of Fine Arts' Marketing Challenges." November 2, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/boston-museum-of-fine-arts-marketing-challenges/.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'Boston Museum of Fine Arts' Marketing Challenges'. 2 November.

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