Incorporating the elements of the entertainment and tourism industries, museums may have lost their power as sites of public attraction, yet the recent resurgence in art enhanced by the emergence of innovative technology as a method of expression may turn the tides. Therefore, creating a museum attraction as the means of sparking audiences’ interest in art, in general, and in the opportunities for exploring, experiencing, and sharing art that museums provide is a legitimate idea. To stir public enthusiasm and drive people’s attention to the art pieces offered at Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum, one will need an exhibition that embraces some of the boldest and most innovative artistic pieces in installation, sculpture, and painting. By using the power of modern media to encourage discussion and provide visitors with a personal experience, the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum’s curators will be able to revive public interest in art and make the museum a popular attraction for tourists and visitors once again.
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The items represented in the exhibition will include both the art pieces owned by the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum and the artworks commissioned from the museum’s partners to encourage a rise in visitors. To avoid possible ownership disputes, all items will be documented and labeled accurately. Due to the combination of legal and ethical concerns, the problem of ownership will have to be resolved by consulting with the authors of the art pieces and lawyers.
The attraction will be located in a closed area, namely, one of the exhibit rooms where audiences will have the opportunity to observe items closely. To access the exhibition, visitors will have to pay a token fee that will be used to cover the expenses to be taken to arrange the event. Thus, the target audiences will be more enthusiastic about attending the event. The scale of attraction is going to be moderate due to budgetary restrictions. Specifically, it is expected that most visitors will be represented by explorers, professionals, and observers (Walmsley 2016).
At present, the museum industry has been experiencing a revival due to the introduction of new tools for creating art and communicating with the audience. Due to the propensity toward uneven and unpredictable fluctuations in trends, the art market does not have regular supply and demand. Instead, both parameters change quite drastically. Currently, the supply levels are quite large, with numerous new artists trying to explore their options in the digital art realm (Art Space 2017).
In turn, the demand for art has been moderately low, which shows that the levels of engagement with art need to be increased among general audiences. For this purpose, basic education about the essence of art, the main methods of expressing ideas in art, and the characteristics that make art pieces unique, is strongly needed. With the help of the specified steps, the demand for art may rise.
Threats, Opportunities, and Issues
Currently, there is the possibility of live artistic experiences being supplemented by online ones. Due to the lack of artistic education, general audiences may not recognize the difference between observing an art piece live in a museum and seeing a picture of it online (Brieber et al. 2015). Therefore the threat of very few people attending is quite tangible for this project. However, the opportunity to engage audiences in an active discussion of the changes in art and artistic expression by using social and modern media counteracts the specified threat. That being said, in the process of implementing the project, one may encounter several issues, the lack of background knowledge that could give the audience the much-needed perspective being the main one. The lack of arts education can be addressed by providing the visitors with a quick tour with basic clarifications about the nature of art, the importance of the form, and other aspects of artistry.
Currently, the focus on making artistic experiences personalized and at the same time interactive can be noticed. Thus, the further integration of tools that allow personalizing experience and greater interaction between an artist and an observer are expected to become the most prominent future trends (Richards 2018). Specifically, the creation of art pieces that will engage visitors in a series of interactions and, possibly, visual simulations with the help of artificial or augmented reality are expected to become key trends.
Visitor Experience Appraisal
As explained above, the current extent of awareness and the level of understanding of key trends in art is quite low among general audiences. Therefore, to increase the willingness among the target audiences to visit the museum and participate in the experience, namely, to share their emotions and have a meaningful and thought-provoking discussion afterward, one will need additional media engagement. For this purpose, different types of media will have to be incorporated (Özdemir & Çelebi 2017). The traditional marketing communication tools, including leaflets, booklets, folders, and inserts, should be used to attract the audiences that attend the museum quite frequently.
For the target audience to become fully immersed in the new and authentic experience that the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum offers, a review site will be created. The site will represent an online simulation of the gallery and provide a virtual tour of the key sights without disclosing a lot about the exhibition. In addition, general information about the art pieces, their authors, and other important facts will be listed traditionally at the official site of the museum.
The tickets for the visit will be set at a reasonable price so that people from different socioeconomic backgrounds could attend the event. The general admission price rate will be set at the token fee of $10, whereas other options will be more costly. Namely, group admissions that will involve access to all elements and aspects of the exhibition will be provided for $20.00. Child admission will be set at $6.00, with children aged four and under being provided with a free pass. In turn, family tickets will cost $30.00.
The exhibition will be open to the target audience throughout January and February. Afterward, the exhibition will be reopened every month for a week. Thus, the attention of the target audiences will be peeled to the event, whereas the administration will be able to add minor details to it each time when the exhibition reopens to keep it fresh and updated. Thus, the public interest will not fade as the exhibition is set on a loop.
The main events included in the program are going to be quite basic so that the focus could remain on the exhibition and its art pieces. The event will be aimed at representing the main idea behind the exhibition, which is to share cultural experiences through art and develop an insightful understanding of one’s perception of art forms. In addition, opportunities for interacting with art pieces and their creators will be emphasized during the event as the participants will be guided through the main ideas to be represented during the exhibition.
Motivations and Expectations of Visitors
It is believed that the target audience will be attracted primarily by the opportunity to explore new ways of interacting with artists and looking at their art pieces. The chance to communicate with the creator of artwork and establish a reciprocal dialogue is still a rather unique opportunity, especially in the realm of visual art, which is why the attendees are expected to be quite motivated to participate in the event. Thus, the expectations are bound to be set very high. Visitors are likely to expect innovative methods of artistic expression shown through various art pieces during the exhibition. To meet these demands and at the same time keep the element of surprise in the exhibition, one will need to shift the perspective of the visitors gradually from the idea of exploring new types of art and new art media to the opportunity to become active agents in their aesthetic experiences.
Access to Attraction
All participants will be provided with equal access to key attractions, including central art pieces and seminal works. However, opportunities for exploring art pieces in greater depth will be provided for an extra fee. For instance, visitors will be offered a chance to interact with artists and their artworks on the notion of gender.
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The process of administering the necessary services to the target population will start with the arrival stage, where people will be greeted and showed to the place where the event will start. The described stage will need to be heart-warming and inviting enough to avoid the scenario in which the target audiences lose their enthusiasm upon arrival. For this reason, interactive experiences will have to be provided after a short introduction performed with the help of AR and VR, allowing visitors to plunge into the exploration of artists’ ideas and their reactions to these artistic experiments.
The general experience that the visitors will share will have to incorporate the elements of a deeply personal journey of self-discovery and the opportunities for active discussion and engagement with the artist on multiple levels. For this purpose, the process of exploring art will be split into two main stages, the first one being the observation and the visual experience, as well as the related engagement with the artist, and the second one implying profound discussions of the impact that the art pieces in question have produced. A closer look at the current experiences of the visitors will show that these are quite scarce and are mostly very personal. While the described situation is quite typical for museums, where the aesthetic satisfaction is the main purpose and the ultimate goal of visiting the pace, other opportunities for engaging with the audience and ensuring that they stay longer at the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum are needed.
To improve the experience of the visitors, not only the content of the exhibition described above but also the quality of other services will have to be improved. For example, the facilities will have to be expanded to include more comfortable restrooms, better temperature management, and places where people could observe art pieces comfortably. In addition, the environment in which the audience will be placed will need to immerse them into the process of artistic contemplation, which is why the elements of ambiance will have to be introduced. Sound isolation, the absence of distracting elements, and the spacious setting of the exhibition will allow creating the needed impression and ensuring that the visitors feel relaxed and engaged at the same time.
The use of language at Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum will also have to be considered with caution and care. Signs and symbols utilized to mark specific areas will have to be clear and deprived of any ambiguity. Thus, visitors will be able to locate the needed areas, services, and entertainment options quickly without feeling confused. For this purpose, the reconsideration of the current sign system and the incorporation of unanimously understood symbols will have to be considered.
The incorporation of the social servicescape conceptual model (SSCM) into the process of catering to visitors’ needs will help to connect the type and quality of services to the context in which they are delivered. Specifically, in the context of the exhibition, the services will have to be delivered in a very subtle and careful way so that visitors would not be distracted from the immersive experiences (Pisam & Tasci 2019). Therefore, the use of innovative techniques such as IT and ICT to help staff members collaborate to enhance service efficacy will be needed. In addition, being a multidimensional perspective the SSCM model will allow modifying the levels of social density depending on the needs of the target audience by changing the extent to which the exhibition environment will encourage interactions between the participants (Chuchu et al. 2018).
At the end of the event, the participants will be provided with a concluding statement that will help to place their experience into a perspective. Afterward, they will be thanked for their attendance and given a chance to leave their impressions, recommendations, and general feedback. Finally, the visitors will be seen on their way out of the museum.
To create a welcoming environment to which customers will be willing to return, one will have to introduce the tools for measuring the satisfaction of the guests and determining what future changes will have to be made to the exhibition. To elicit the needed data, surveys will be sent to guests after they leave the museum. By using a set of ten questions with a Likert-type scale for determining the extent of visitors’ satisfaction, one will locate the problematic areas that will have to be improved or avoided altogether in the future. However, due to the stiff nature of surveys, there will be a threat of omitting important information that may be overlooked in the questions. Therefore, providing an open-ended question at the end of the survey with a blank space for the visitors to fill in will be required (Ali 2016). Thus, guests will be given a chance to leave their impressions, recommendations, and suggestions concerning further development of the ideas presented at the exhibition.
In addition to extra options for enjoying their experience at the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum, guests will also be provided with a chance to make their impressions and memories about the museum stay a little longer with them. Digital copies of the exhibition along with the opportunity to take pictures will be offered to the visitors. In addition, the guests will be able to mark their journey across the museum at the official site.
Sharing the Experience
Another important aspect of the event, the chance to share the aesthetic impressions, emotions, and gained knowledge will be readily available to the participants. Specifically, the visitors will be able to send links to the online maps of their journey at the exhibition, the notes that they made in the process, and the discussions that they had, with their friends and discuss them online (Choi & Kim 2017). Moreover, at the official site of the museum, the visitors will be able to engage in discussions about the exhibition, the impressions that they received, and the experiences that they obtained.
Extending the Experience
In addition to the opportunity to share the knowledge obtained while attending the exhibition, the participants will get a chance to expand their experiences to explore art pieces in a greater context. Specifically, additional opportunities for art-related education will be provided. Online courses created with the help of the services such as Skillshare and Masterclass will allow the participants to place the newly received information about art pieces into a specific context and understand why the artworks that they observed during the exhibition were deemed as particularly important for the development of artistic forms. Moreover, IT and ICT tools will be used to encourage discussions of the experiences obtained during the exhibition (Lehn & Heath 2016). As a result, the cross-cultural dialogue will be launched to address some of the most prominent aspects of contemporary art and evaluate the directions in which it evolves.
Goals and Objectives (SMART)
At present, it is imperative to increase the attractiveness of the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum as the venue for entertainment. It is crucial to incorporate the strategies that will help to rebrand the place and position it as the environment in which visitors can engage in the dialogue with creators ad learn about the latest innovations in art. By showing that art can be interactive and directed at communication and active discussion, one will increase the levels of participation drastically. Therefore, the following objectives will need to be attained:
- Developing a brand that will position the museum as a place of artistic innovation;
- Create the brand image that will be linked to communication and personal exploration;
- Increase the attractiveness of the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum for tourists by 15% within the next three months;
- Enhance the efficacy of the communication channels used at the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum to communicate to potential customers by 20%.
The described goals reflect the necessity to shape the current image of the museum to make it more attractive and emphasize that it incorporates the latest opportunities for communication and entertainment. The integration of technological innovations, including the developments in the IT and ICT areas, will make the process of visiting Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum exhibitions much more attractive to the target population (Zhao et al. 2015).
Measurement Strategies and Tools
To evaluate the progress that the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum will have made by 2023 as the proposed strategies are introduced, one will have to deploy the tools for quantitative comparative analysis. Specifically, one will need to compare the current financial projections for 2020-2023 to the ones that will be obtained within the next three years.
Plan Implementation Techniques
The key implementation technique to be used for the described goals includes the integration of the tactical implementation plan (TIP). The inclusion of the TIP technique into the process of promoting change within the selected environment will lead to the creation of opportunities for improvements in the future since it is based on the principles of the Six Sigma technique and the Lean Management philosophy (Antony et al. 2016). The integration of the framework based on the philosophy of incremental improvements and innovation will incite a gradual change in the organization, causing the corporate philosophy to change toward the one based on incremental improvement.
As soon as the suggested changes are applied to the environment of the Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum, setting the grounds for additional improvements in the grand scheme of the organization’s development will be needed. The company will benefit from a strategy-oriented at an incremental change that will help to keep the levels of its attractiveness to its target audiences high. Therefore, the main post-implementation recommendation is to seek strategies for maintaining the relevance of the museum and the enthusiasm of its potential visitors.
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