Exploring Key Trends in Digital Experience Beyond the Museum Sector

Charlotte Sexton, Charlotte Sexton Associates, UK, Allegra Burnette, Independent Consultant, USA

Published paper: Exploring key trends in digital experience beyond the museum sector

There is no generic silver-bullet solution for successfully engaging audiences with museums—or everyone would be taking exactly the same approach. Looking left and right to your nearest comparable organizations might give you some useful working examples to emulate, but what if you were to also look beyond the museum sector to gain understanding and inspiration from the wider cultural and business landscape? What examples would be most relevant to a museum’s operating context, whether large or small? What new approaches might better enable you to meet your mission? And how can digital be better leveraged to improve the visitor experience?

Having left positions within museums in the United States and United Kingdom, we have spent the last two years working within the broader cultural sector, as well as researching companies across industries as varied as travel, hospitality, banking, retail, and more. During that time, we’ve had the opportunity to reflect on larger trends, including the development of organizational strategies to bridge gaps, techniques to support efforts, and ways to lead progress. We have also encountered the use of various methods to execute on those strategies and have observed their impact. Perhaps most relevant, we have witnessed how companies are facing the changing relationship of physical and digital and the emerging formats and technologies that enable new kinds of experiences.

Where do museums fit within these broader trends, and what lessons can be gleaned and applied within the museum sector right now and in the near future? This paper and associated conference presentation look at key issues facing museums and explore how some of the broader trends and approaches beyond the field can be distilled and used to inform, support, or amplify the work currently taking place within museums.

Published Reports (paywall):
The Power Of Disciplined Simplification
Top Ways To Improve Digital Customer Experience
Design Methods In The Age Of The Customer
Digital Customer Experience Trends, 2015
Case Study: IBM Builds A Design-Driven Culture At Scale
Make This Website Redesign Your Last
Digital Customer Experience Trends, 2016

Arts Council, England - Digital Research Programme Results
NESTA, Innovation in the Public Sector | How can public organisations better create, improve and adapt?
Case Studies: Canterbury Cathedral, UK; One Dance UK consortium, English National Ballet; Media Archive Central England