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Viewers researchers have launched outcomes on their examination and survey of viewers numbers in 2023 throughout all genres of the UK arts sector

 

Indigo, the viewers analysis specialists group, has launched a full report titled “Tomorrow’s Audience,” a analysis undertaking created in collaboration with the field workplace software program supplier Spektrix and a consortium of many main arts organizations within the UK. 

Involving an examination of aggregated sector ticketing information, a UK-wide viewers survey, and focus teams with new audiences, the report explores the behaviors, motivations, and attitudes of first-time bookers and first-time attendees to performing arts corporations.

This analysis follows Indigo’s work in 2022 of “Missing Audiences,” which surveyed the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on viewers numbers. In 2023, this concern remained throughout organizations.

Nonetheless, outcomes from “Missing Audiences” discovered that though not all pre-COVID audiences had returned, there have been anecdotal reviews of extra ‘new’ audiences attending.  

Subsequently, the newer “Tomorrow’s Audience” additional evaluates the profile, habits, and expertise of first-time attendees to the performing arts and what organizations can do to draw them and see them return.

Involving each quantitative and qualitative information, this sector-wide analysis examined over 10 years of ticketing information from 340 UK performing arts teams and represented a cross-section of corporations from the most important to the smallest.

The undertaking additionally inspired its taking part 72 arts organizations to distribute a survey to their audiences asking about their expertise attending arts occasions for the “first time since COVID.”

The survey ran for 3 weeks in October 2023 — throughout which 32,677 full responses have been gathered. 

Taking part UK organizations included the Birmingham Royal Ballet, English Nationwide Opera, London Symphony Orchestra, Royal Albert Corridor, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Shakespeare’s Globe, and the Three Choirs Competition, amongst others. 

“By combining booking data from theaters and arts centers right across the UK with expert analysis and survey responses, we’ve learned that there’s a real opportunity to develop new audiences,” stated Spektrix’s director of sector technique Liv Nilssen on Indigo’s website. “This unique consortium has brought together technology and consultancy with leading arts organizations to create a truly connected view of audience behaviors and to understand how arts organizations can revitalize connections with their visitors.”

 

Picture supply: “Tomorrow’s Audiences

 

In January 2024, geared up with the survey outcomes, the undertaking created on-line focus teams with 15 viewers members who had recognized themselves as being within the “new-to-arts” class.

Key findings in Indigo’s ensuing 86-page report discovered that in 2023, there was a big improve in viewers members reserving for arts and cultural occasions, and greater than half of audiences have been first-time bookers.

General 2023 ticket gross sales have been 101.6% of what they have been in 2019 — the final full 12 months of information earlier than the COVID-19 pandemic. The research states that in January 2023, gross sales have been simply 92.4% of the identical month in 2019.

Additional, first-time bookers comprised 54% of all attendees in 2023 — a close to report excessive within the decade. In 2013, first-timers made up 55% of bookings, and 50% in 2019. 

“As audience specialists, we want to empower the whole sector with an understanding of audiences,” stated Indigo’s CEO and founder Katy Raines in the report. “In partnership with Spektrix, we have been able to bring together long-term ticketing data trends, quantitative and qualitative audience insight from multiple organizations — and together we hope we can find ways to build a stronger sector.”

 

“Tomorrow’s Audiences”

 

In response to the info, whatever the results of the pandemic, the final decade has seen a downward development in retention charges. Moreover, bigger organizations noticed a steeper lower in retention than smaller ones.

“Tomorrow’s Audience” reveals that extra first-timer audiences are returning for a second time — 19.5% of latest bookers from 2022 returned in 2023, a fee of re-attendance not seen since 2016.

Additional, a median of 62% of first-time bookers had attended the group earlier than, whereas a median of 20% of first-timers have been new to the humanities. Within the bar graph under, “new-to-you” refers back to the associated arts firm. 

New-to-the-arts attendees tended to be youthful than these acquainted to the humanities — 18% have been beneath the age of 35 (in contrast with 14% for the new-to-you audiences). The youthful new-to-the-arts respondents have been additionally extra numerous. 

 

“Tomorrow’s Audiences”

 

Of the new-to-arts audiences, 70% stated their expertise was higher than they anticipated, and 88% stated attending an occasion elevated their wellbeing. Limitations to attendance included monetary and transportation challenges, whereas motivators included going out as an event or to spend time with household and associates. 

To handle and enhance the accessibility and probability of audiences returning for occasions, the report suggests the usage of simpler e mail and social media automation instruments, referral schemes, “special occasion” packages, and easy-to-use reserving techniques. 

The report’s different ideas to enhance viewers expertise included specializing in worth reasonably than worth, which can take the type of buyer testimonials and satisfaction rankings, reasonably than memberships and reductions.

Moreover, organizations might preserve an information sheet of latest attendees and “to keep listening to new audiences” to encourage loyalty to them. 

“This is the first research project to truly understand and quantify the opportunity that new audiences post-lockdown present within the performing arts,” stated Indigo’s affiliate director Kerry Radden on their website. “Despite the challenges of recovery from the pandemic, our UK arts organizations are not only bouncing back, but managing to attract significant numbers of new attenders – many of whom have discovered the performing arts for the first time. Armed with the insight we have uncovered together, we’re confident that the sector can build these new attenders into the audiences of tomorrow and beyond.”

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