Nonprofits, Arts, and Marketing

Public appreciation for the arts remains the vanguard of white and often older consumers according to the latest study from the Wallace Foundation. This 125 page report emphasizes the importance of training children who will later become adult consumers of arts.

The report indicates "[m]arketing campaigns are typically designed to promote access to arts events by mitigating the practical barriers that prevent individuals who are inclined to participate from doing so. But such campaigns are typically ineffective at increas­ing the participation of people with little interest in or knowledge about the arts."

The report goes on to discuss improvements that are being made by arts organizations to expand consumer interest and these include:

  • Symphonies and museums are increasingly offering adult education programs linked to specific exhibits and performances to build attendance.
  • Nonprofit organizations offering programs and instruction in dance, music, art and drama are filling a role previously filled by public schools which no longer offer these programs.

These organizations often need help to effectively market their programs and agencies could increase their own visibility while assisting arts-​related nonprofit in reaching their goals. Have any new arts organizations opened in your market area recently?

[Source: Cultivating Demand for the Arts, Wallace Foundation Release, September 2008] 
Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.