Let's Get Real Conference 2011: ‘Failing Forward’ Case Studies

| 12 September 2011
‘Failing Forward’ Case Studies

As part of Culture24’s conference Let’s Get Real: How to Evaluate Success Online? a range of Action Research Project partners will present honest case studies about online projects they attempted, what didn’t work, and what they learned as a result.


If you build it they won’t come
Hugh Wallace, Head of Digital Media, National Museums Scotland

Despite following sector best practice, and being based around popular and high-profile topics, our early projects encouraging people to upload their own photos to our Flickr stream failed to take flight. My case study explores the reasons why and explains what we’d do (and are doing) differently now when asking people to participate.

I Will Never Tweet Again
Josephine Chanter, Head of Communications, The Design Museum

The museum has an international Twitter following keen for content and engagement: what to do? Get a Dutch graphic designer to do a Q+A on Twitter. This is what we learnt.

Keeping an eye on my vital statistics
James Morley, Website Development Manager, Kew

Relaunching a website presents all sorts of opportunities - technical & editorial enhancements, implementation of SEO best practice and improved design and user journeys. But it is also fraught with risk. Will it harm my search rankings and referral numbers? How do I handle changing URLs? What about broken incoming links and bookmarks? Using metrics allows you to monitor performance and at the same time quickly spot and fix any problems.

Knowing Me, Knowing You
Matthew Cock, Head of Web, British Museum

We really didn't know a lot about our online audience and how they used our site. We have implemented a few things using free or cheap analytics tools and surveys that are helping our marketing and web teams come to a better (and joined up) understanding that should help us prioritise what we do, and optimise what we do for our audience segments. It's still a work in progress, but I will run through what we're doing and what we hope to learn.

Have you heard of us?
Emma McLean, Digital Marketing Officer, National Maritime Museum

There are lots of exciting and unusual approaches to reaching new audiences that digital platforms give us, but if we can't measure the success or failure of our campaigns, is it worth it? What do we learn? How do we improve? The NMM has tried a few awareness campaigns - can we justify them in tight economic times?

Trying to make the parts add up
Louise Gardner, Head of Communications, Watershed

A snapshot of how Watershed is reversing the digital fragmentation of the last 10 years. Joining up the organisation and its representation to create clarity and transparency about the range of Watershed’s cultural and creative economy activity. Step one – to unify our three main websites, content, what’s on and innovation.  What did we have to do? Make a huge organizational step forward gaining a lot of clarity and understanding about our brand, our offer, our stakeholders and the way we talk about ourselves.