Museum audio guide on an Open Platform – a different mindset?

Once content providers have published a tour with our izi.TRAVEL the most difficult part on which the success of the project hinges starts: the promotion. Your tour is published but how are your – future – visitors going to find it? From our experience we know that the majority of the projects are challenged here. Why? Probably because the marketing departments perceive the project as “just another audio guide”. But it is much more than that!

The eternal life of stories

Good story wants to be retold. That is the essence of storytelling. By using izi.TRAVEL your stories are no longer limited to on site usage, but they can constantly be used and reused: for instance users may click the “share” button within the app to post your story on social media. A museum can share them on their own media channels, web, Facebook etc. Think of continuous campaigns to share stories on your Social Channel. You may not only share the tour, but also share each story individually! And remember to explicitly invite your visitors to share their favourite story in your tour.

This way of thinking may bring you back to the production of stories with the idea “I want to create a story which deserves be shared!” Well, it is probably a good idea. Please remember our slogan: “Your stories will outlive any technology, even ours” If you create a good story, it will live for decades, spreading itself around the world and people’s minds.

Bring people to your collection or your collection to the people?

You may feel that publishing stories ‘outside’ of the museum will keep your visitors from coming. Many museums focus on getting the audience inside the museum – to sell tickets. Research presented by Smithsonian at the MW conference in Hong-Kong in 2013 demonstrated that ANY exposure of your content in the digital media will in fact bring more visitors to the museum.

But think of the real purpose of your museum: is it to bring the people to the collection or the collection to the people? In this digital age, an online visitor may also qualify as a visitor, as long as you make sure that you can count and track them in the right way. Proper statistics – like the ones on our CMS dashboard – will support your next application for grants or sponsorships.

1+1=3

Now that your story is on izi.TRAVEL you have become part of a growing network of engaging content: 5-10 new tours are published with us every day. You already likely have some institutions and individuals who published their tours around. Your content will be stronger when it contributes and links to that network. Consider joining your efforts. Building consortiums is also a very strong method to apply for external funding.

Let the businesses around you do your promotion, for free

While you can be good in developing stories, the businesses around you could be quite good in promoting them. Why not leverage their expertise? Hotels, restaurants, shops and public transport means are more than happy to propose free guided tours to their customers as an additional service. If done, their customers will become your visitors. Can you develop and present stories that will support local business and sponsors? Focus on themes or values that you and your potential promotion partner share and it will be easy to discuss the possibility of joint publishing and promotion. Please watch our short Smart City video to grasp the idea!

Conclusion: your audio guide is a marketing tool

It must be clear now; by publishing your audio guide on an Open Platform – like izi.TRAVEL, your stories become an extensive marketing tool to reach a broad audience. Engage them and they will surely visit!