@MarDixon Passionate about culture internationally. Run remixing events, workshops, create solutions, and an international speaker. Over sharer and Mom who loses arguments to a teen. Projects created: @CultureThemes @lovetheatreday @AskaCurator @MuseumSelfieDay @TeensInMuseums @52museums
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    March 16th, 2012mardixonCulture

    With years of collective experience in social media engagement, many museums are stopping to ask themselves: what have we really learned about the audiences we are connecting with? Have we formed more meaningful relationships with our community and in the process, are we better serving the missions of our institutions?

    #Musesocial is a tag on Twitter which I was first introduced to by Erin Blasco, from the Smithsonian National Postal Museum. A few weeks ago, I noticed she was asking provocative and probing questions such as ‘after following a museum on social media, have you visited its website more or less?’ or ‘what do you wish museums were doing more of with social media?’ These questions were sparking conversations, some receiving unexpecting replies (for me, I’m not going to speak for Erin).  But it was very interesting and eye opening.

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    February 7th, 2012mardixonInternational

    One of the biggest challenges I face as a consultant is hearing people say ‘I haven’t had time to ‘play’ on social media’. This statement is often being said by those making decisions on their cultural venues future.

    And the question really should be ‘Can you afford not too?’

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    December 18th, 2011mardixonCulture, Personal

    I recently took part in the Guardian’s Culture Professional end of year Chat: a good or bad year for culture and heritage.

    While I tend to stick to the more traditional cultural aspects (museums, art galleries, heritage venues) the chat brought up some other aspects such as contemporary performances, ballets, opera, etc.

    One of the points I made was I felt 2011 was the Year of Collaboration.  To my surprise, this seemed to have caused a discussion on whether it really was or not.   Since the Arts council cuts were announced earlier in the year, it was clear to me that the only route for the smaller venues to survive had to be collaboration.

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    October 10th, 2011mardixonInternational, Literacy

    This is the time of the year when my tweets tend to shift from museums and miscellaneous to literary (and miscellaneous) as the Frankfurt Book Fair is one of THE literary events that most of my literary friends are either going to or part of.  Publishers, authors, agents all seem to flog to Germany for this International event.   At the same time, there are a lot of literary festivals this time of the year (such as the brilliant Cheltenham Festivals  which those who can’t get to Germany prefer to attend.

    I love books.  I love reading, I love going to libraries and book stores and searching new books I didn’t know existed.  I love the feeling of leaping into a book – becoming a bystander in the scenes that I’m reading.  Charlotte and I are fortunate to sometimes receive books from publishers  to review which has spurred her love of reading even further.  And recently, I even received an acknowledgement in L.A. Weatherly sequel Angel Fire. [Thank you!]

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    September 28th, 2011mardixonCulture, International, Literacy

    During the last few weeks, I’ve noticed peaks and troughs with the diverse industries I follow.   I contemplated how I could capture this data and felt the best way was to track Twitter for 12 hours over one day.

    I started tracking at 8:00 am on September 27th 2011.  My account (@MarDixon) currently stands:

    3,156 followers
    1,887 Following

    The key industries I follow could be broken into the following main sectors.  Other sectors are mentioned through the report.

    Literacy:  This includes publishers, writers/authors, marketing, eBook
    Museums: Including Art Galleries, Heritage Venues, people working within the industries.
    American Museums: As above
    Science: Groups or persons who promote the science industry
    Personal tweets: Tweets, while not exclusive of the above personnel, were clearly on a non-professional basis.
    Other: Tweets that didn’t fit into the main categories

    There were some obvious times to tweet and not tweet and it seems different industries have slotted themselves into times that work best for them.  I seen minimal clashes of tweets vying for audiences attention.   This was interesting as it pinpoints times throughout the day where tweeting is more effective for certain industries.

    This data is raw and obviously not scientific.  The notes were taken as and when I saw trends shifting and are only estimates.

    Click chart:

    I also tried to take notes along the way to help gauge where trends where leading.  Please see them here

     

     

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    September 25th, 2011mardixonCulture

    Recently, I’ve been noticing a lot of people asking me to join their BranchOut network. I signed up for it as I was curious to what it was after I received an invite.  It was easy to join as it was attached to my Facebook account and after a quick peek, I quickly forgot about it.  Fast-forward a few months and I’m noticing more people sending emails saying they joined my BranchOut ‘Professional network’.  Professional network’?  But that’s what LinkedIn is, right?  So what exactly is BranchOut?

    To find out, I asked on social media:
    Does anyone think BranchOut is a threat to LinkedIn? #socialmedia

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    September 23rd, 2011mardixonCulture

    Recently, Culture24 Action Research Project Let’s Get Real held a conference in Bristol where it launched the tremendously insightful report ‘How to Evaluate Online Success?’ Report, findings & recommendations.

    I’m still reading the in-depth report but a few things I’ve found so far:

    • Measure quality or value, rather than use usage online.
    • Some institutions outsource their Google Analytics to a third party.

    Future Trend:

    • Mobile traffic was, for every museum, growing rapidly.
    • Automated shortening of URLS to t.co in August 2011 will allow for better reports on Twitter-based traffic.
    • Very few organizations set up goals in GA.

    Analysis:

    • Search traffic was still the main avenue visitors used to find sites (another reminder of the importance of SEO).  This was picked up on when discussion lead to importance/useage of homepage in today’s society.
    • Mobile traffic is growing.  Institutions need to move this priority from back burner to front burner.

    Social media:

    • Social media should be renamed Engagement strategy – social media only works when you engage with the followers.
    • The formula for Facebook engagement, while looking like something out of Quantative Maths, really is a simple breakdown that is very easy to follow. (Kudos to the designer of the formula though!).
    • Simply having a social media strategy is not enough – strategy needs to be ‘targeted and effective’ eg not written with business hat on.

    As always, throughout the conference, there were a lot of tweets.  I pdf’d majority of them here with some of my favorites being:

    #c24lgr @tomux If you aim for the moon and only get half way that is still impressive (Love this statement).
    #c24lgr @tomux Be engaged and be involved in the community.
    #c24lgr You’re always in beta at best <~ so true! Need a working document but not many get to end goal.

    The following blogs and links are must reads:

    Thanks to all involved in the conference including the fabulous Jane Finnis, Rosie Clarke and the whole Culture24 team.

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    September 16th, 2011mardixonCulture, International

    A Guest Blog by Satoko Shimizu @0bo5_fr who is a Student of Tokyo University of Foreign Languages (TUFS) French major.

    When we hear “social media and museum” we tend to think about interesting action from the museum side for a more open-wide visitor. But social media can be tools that visitors use to express their opinions to the museum.

    In Paris there is an interesting movement as a good example.

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    August 22nd, 2011mardixonCulture, International

    From July 27th until August 1th, I ran a simple 8 question survey called Does Social Media work for Cultural Sector.  Why?  Because I was working on a blog post and Tweeted to find out if anyone could point me to any research that would prove, or disprove, whether Social media does indeed work within the Culture sector.  To my surprise, it seemed that this question hadn’t been posed and there certainly didn’t seem to be any research or analysis to answer my question.

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    July 30th, 2011mardixonCulture

    Please take this very short and quick survey to help us evaluate the impact of social media within the Cultural Sector.

    Social Media in the Culture Sector:   http://t.co/iTJkFtU 

    Please note:

    • This survey is being run by Mar Dixon (@MarDixon) to be shared with everyone.
    • All data recorded will be kept anonymous, however, some data might be shared (such as quotes, etc).
    Thank you!
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