Get Legit Data About Covid-19’s Influence On Your Audience

N.B. I just noticed the deadline to apply to participate in end of day, Thursday, April 23 so if you have an interest, send an email to Matthew Jenetopulos listed at the bottom of the Culture Track page.

Long time readers of the blog know that I am a big fan of the results of the Culture Track survey conducted every three years to gauge shifting attitudes and perceptions about cultural activities. The people behind the survey, LaPlaca Cohen are teaming up with Slover Linett Audience Research to conduct a special Covid-19 version of their research project and are looking for arts and cultural organizations to help distribute a survey to their audiences.

While you may be reluctant to ask your audiences to complete a survey during challenging times, it can be quite worth your while to participate because Culture Track will provide you with the results for your mailing list in the context of national trends.

You’re probably interested in this study because you want to understand your audience’s and community’s needs at this crucial time, and because you want to be able to earn their continued engagement and support. We’re working to develop an online interface that will let you log in to view your audience-members’ survey responses and download that data for your own use (with no visibility into the data of other organizations’ survey respondents). We’re hoping that this tool will also let you compare your data to the U.S. population averages and to the aggregate of other cultural audiences nationally. Of course, we’ll also be creating a series of special-edition Culture Track reports and web materials based on our analysis of all the data, which will be freely available online.

I had gotten an email about the study a week ago but it slipped my mind amid all daily challenges we face so I have to credit Nina Simon for reminding me and getting me moving on it. (And also for providing a title for this post)

The Wallace Foundation is funding the effort so there will be no cost to you. They will provide you with a unique link to send to a segment of your mailing list. Segment is the operative word. They ask that you send the survey link to people who have both high engagement as subscribers/donors/multi-year ticket buyers, as well as those who have only attended once or twice across a couple years or may be on your email list but haven’t attended yet.

They want participation from the entire range of cultural entities,

of every size and focus — including community-serving, culturally specific, and socially engaged organizations — from art museums, history museums & historic sites, science centers & natural history museums, and botanic gardens to theaters, orchestras, dance companies, opera companies, film festivals, folk festivals, libraries, and the like.

In another part of the webpage, they reference people who provide writing classes or use art in healthcare environments so they definitely want everyone.

They would like the first wave of survey links to go out on Wednesday, April 29 so if any of this sounds appealing to you at all, check out the informational webpage and figure out what you need to do to make it happen.

About Joe Patti

I have been writing Butts in the Seats (BitS) on topics of arts and cultural administration since 2004 (yikes!). Given the ever evolving concerns facing the sector, I have yet to exhaust the available subject matter. In addition to BitS, I am a founding contributor to the ArtsHacker ( website where I focus on topics related to boards, law, governance, policy and practice.

I am also an evangelist for the effort to Build Public Will For Arts and Culture being helmed by Arts Midwest and the Metropolitan Group. (

My most recent role was as Executive Director of the Grand Opera House in Macon, GA.

Among the things I am most proud are having produced an opera in the Hawaiian language and a dance drama about Hawaii's snow goddess Poli'ahu while working as a Theater Manager in Hawaii. Though there are many more highlights than there is space here to list.


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