Público: de espectador a financiador. Mecenazgo de los particulares. Marco

[…]

 

Las medidas fiscales introducidas en el ejercicio 2015  han implicado considerables  mejoras en el tratamiento del mecenazgo en el ámbito del IRPF, que lo sitúan en un puesto líder internacionalmente. Ello debería propiciar el desarrollo del mecenazgo de los particulares, pero para que sea así se necesita todo un período de  formación y asimilación, no puede esperarse que el éxito sea inmediato. No existe una tradición en este sentido y en la España democrática, por el acento de lo público en la Cultura, se ha generalizado la pérdida del hábito de pago, algo que no sucede, por ejemplo, en el deporte ni en las ONG.

En un país que, desde nuestras latitudes aparece como un paraíso en este sentido, el Reino Unido, se reflexiona sobre el necesario “cultivo” del mecenazgo de los particulares[1]. Debe destacarse en este trabajo:

“The fieldwork identified five clusters of concern for developing donor cultivation strategies. These were:

  • Organisational factors – the internal organisational characteristics of individual organisations
  •  Contexts and relationships – the socio-political, cultural and economic environment, stakeholders, partners and competitors
  •  Donors – the knowledge and understanding of existing and potential donors
  • Approaches – the extent and nature of approaching and interacting with donors
  • Success – the understanding, assessment and use of ‘effectiveness’ within donor cultivation and fundraising more widely

The literature review found that donor cultivation is not a clearly defined concept and is often conflated with more general fundraising models. Bringing the different strands of literature together, we argue that instead of being an independent concept, donor cultivation should be perceived as an umbrella term that combines three strands of thinking about donor relationships: donor engagement where the relationship is of an interactive nature, donor education which is modelled around an instructive relationship, and donor control which takes a directive stance.”

Y propone una herramienta de ayuda, “The ThinKit! Steering Wheel to Donor Cultivation”.

Otro trabajo resalta las posibles barreras al éxito de los esfuerzos en este sentido, en el sector de mayor riqueza.[2]

“This report looks across the findings of two studies conducted by Arts Quarter – our Hidden Wealth Research Project conducted with arts organisations over the period April 2010 to May 2012 which sought to help organisations understand their capacities to engage with high net worth individuals (HNWIs) by taking those organisations through a process of screening audience/ attender data and our 2012 Philanthropy in the Arts Survey, top-line findings of which we reported in April 2012.

This report brings together findings from these two projects so as to provide a snapshot on the extent to which arts organisations have some of the most fundamental building blocks in place in order to embark effectively on the process of soliciting higher levels of giving from individuals, namely:

  • a community of potential supporters from within their audience and/or visitor bases with a financial capacity to give. Having such a constituency can be critical to developing and indeed delivering in this fundraising area in the medium term in that these are individuals who are already aware of an organisation’s work and possibly have already a financial history of support through ticket purchase,
  • an articulated narrative on which to base their requests for support – so as to engage these and other prospects (i.e. a Case for Support),
  • in light of limited fundraising resources, an engaged community of senior volunteers/Trustees to act as fundraising advocates, endorsers, solicitors and indeed givers in their own right.

Possible Barriers to Success: All who took part in interview recognised that culturally, looking to engage proactively with wealthy individuals was likely to raise a number of potential barriers to success. The most frequently mentioned barriers were (greater number of mentions listed first):

  • Inadequate staff resources to manage a programme effectively – split roles and responsibilities likely to impact on clear focus needed to deliver.
  • Lack of a cogent Case for Support – a sector-wide issue as evidenced in our April 2012 report and indeed in our findings here.
  • Lack of understanding of the potential wider channels of support beyond cash gifts.
  • Lack of sufficiently articulated plans in the medium term (beyond one year) in order to attract support.
  • Lack of experience and skills within staff to plan and initiate a managed programme of activity and thereafter in managing and engaging with potential and actual donors.
  • Lack of understanding across organisations as a whole of working with, engaging and managing relationships with potential and actual individual donors outside of the core fundraising function.
  • Lack of appreciation within senior management generally and at Board levels of the process of engaging and servicing potential high donors and of fundraising in general.
  • Lack of understanding of the process of gift acquisition and currently unrealistic expectations of the speed at which gifts might be secured and on that basis, the potential for any campaign to be perceived as failing if gifts were not leveraged within a relatively speedy timeframe.”

Internet podría ser un elemento de éxito, democratizando la filantropía, de acuerdo con otro trabajo, también británico, dedicado éste a un público de la máxima amplitud[3].

“Though this report is about digital giving to arts and cultural organisations, the two recurring themes are that technology helps to engage audiences which are then more likely to give and that technology will pervade all parts of cultural organisations.

(…)

This report focuses on how individuals can become philanthropists to the arts.

(…)

Throughout the report, the word “audience” is used. This is taken to mean all the visitors, listeners, readers, observers, beneficiaries, clients, customers or just passers-by who benefit in one way or another from art and culture, be it a concert, exhibition, play, performance, statue, building, monument or any other form of art or culture.

(…)

It may seem obvious to state that voluntary giving does not happen in isolation; it is an outcome from a process of audience engagement which may occur over a long period. In a similar manner, digital technology alone does not magically enable greater giving; it is just a set of tools for better engagement.

It is not productive, therefore, to focus on digital giving in isolation, so this report examines how technology can be used in all aspects of the arts and cultural sector to involve audiences and visitors more so that they feel a sense of participation. This in turn can motivate them to give. Some organisations already do this well but for others it is a daunting task for which trustees and management may feel ill equipped.

Technology can be used to engage wider audiences than traditional major donor campaigns, which tend to target a small number of high net worth benefactors. It can “democratise philanthropy” by embracing larger numbers of supporters from all demographic groups, giving them a sense of ownership and responsibility for the art and culture that they value.

Donors, of course, don’t just miraculously appear; they are nurtured over a period of time. This is only possible if you know who to engage, a task that technology can facilitate, even for organisations that provide free entry. Audience members that return frequently, presumably because they appreciate the art and culture, can be identified in a number of ways and “invited in”, initially perhaps to become a subscriber, then a member, maybe after that a patron and possibly eventually a trustee. Throughout this journey there are opportunities to present the case for support and ask for donations. This is an “escalator of engagement”; the donor develops a greater understanding of the organisation and its needs, thereby assuming an increasing sense of ownership, and in return is increasingly recognised and thanked.

The engagement strategy has to recognise that technology has changed how we all behave. We expect now to be in continuous contact wherever we are and to share our opinions with both friends and strangers. We want to be part of “the wisdom of the crowd” and are prepared to buy and donate accordingly. We have also become producers, not just consumers, able to create and disseminate our own art and culture without intermediaries, whilst art events can now be broadcast live and pop up in unexpected places. These changes are threats to some, but they can be harnessed to great advantage, introducing new audience members, enhancing the artistic and educational experience and generating new opportunities for revenue and donations.

Implementing technology is not easy. It can be costly and confusing, too often there is wasteful duplication and the return on investment can be hard to calculate. Some of these barriers to entry fall as new technologies are adopted in large volumes and prices drop, but others require strategic intervention. The way that charities currently subscribe to giving websites and the arcane processes required to reclaim Gift Aid are cases in point. An effective strategy to use technology to raise money requires every part of the organisation to embrace technology, including curators, promoters, fundraisers, senior management and trustees. Technology no longer lives in a cupboard managed by one department; it is becoming all pervasive. However, the skills and experience to exploit digital technology confidently and cost-effectively are not widespread in cultural organisations, particularly smaller and regional ones. Addressing this skills deficit is a major challenge.

It is inevitable that at some time in the future technology will be widely used to help cultural organisations engage their supporters and encourage them to give; the question is when. The recommendations in this report therefore focus mainly on how to speed up adoption and include:

  • An industry and Government forum to develop a more cohesive technical architecture for online giving and claiming Gift Aid;
  • Investment in online matching programmes to incentivise smaller charities to develop their community of supporters;A request for more cohesive, joined-up Government policy to encourage philanthropy;
  • Increased investment in research and development of digital technology in the cultural sector, with a focus on engagement, and showcasing of the results;
  • Greater use of shareware and exchange of software, technology, experiences and best practice across the sector;
  • Incentives to encourage technology skills transfer from business and employment of young technologists;
  • Suggestions for how cultural organisations that are currently without a digital strategy can develop a plan and introduce new thinking in trustee boards.”

La  previa consideración de los costes y oportunidades de la entrada en el entorno digital para las instituciones culturales es tratado en otro trabajo, también británico[4].

1.2 Overview of key findings

The findings in this report confirm that engaging with the arts through digital media is now a mainstream activity. Crucially, this engagement augments, rather than replaces, the live experience. Just as live music has grown stronger in the era of iTunes, so people still want shared, live experiences in other arts and cultural genres. However, this is not to demote the internet to the role of marketing channel: a significant minority of us use the internet to consume, share and create artistic content. Specifically, our survey of a 2000-strong sample of the English adult online population finds that:

  1. Over half of the online population (53%) have used the internet to engage with the arts and cultural sector in the last 12 months:
    1. The most common activities centre around discovery of information about a live event orartist/performer (33%) and ticketing (20%)
    2.  Other key activities include watching or listening to a clip of an arts performance or exhibition (16%),whilst a further 8% had watched or listened to a full arts performance
    3.  6% say they have used the internet to “create something artistic” in the past 12 months.
  2. Interaction with arts and cultural content in digital environments can be classified into five main categories: access, learn, experience, share and create:
  •  Access: discovering what’s on, filtering opportunities and planning attendance or participation
  • Learn: acquiring new skills and knowledge (for example, finding out more about the life of an artist)
  •  Experience: experiencing the full creative or artistic work online
  • Sharing: using the internet to share content, experiences and opinions
  • Create: use of the internet to assist with the creative process itself.
  1. People currently use digital media primarily as a complement to, rather than a substitute for, the live experience:
  •  The most prevalent online activities are those that support access to live events. This is also where the greatest proportion of people can see potential going forward
  • People who watch/listen to online clips indicate that they are (in the main) doing so in order to sample, filter and decide what events or shows to see live
  • Most people perceive the live offline experience as being superior to the online.
  1. Music is the genre showing the highest level of online engagement – however, opportunities for other cultural genres remain strong:
    1. Of those who had viewed an online clip of an arts event, 81% had viewed a music clip. Dance (30%)and theatre (27%) were the next highest, followed by visual arts (19%)
    2. However, there appear to be clear opportunities for other genres: for example, 56% of museums fans and 47% of those interested in archives would like to take a virtual tour of the institution they were visiting online
    3. Similarly, five minute performance/exhibition clips appealed to nearly half of those with an interest in visual arts and 41% of dance fans, whilst 44% of dance fans said they would take a virtual tour backstage.
  2. Social media – and in particular Facebook – has become a major tool for discovering as well as sharing information about arts and culture, second only to organic search through Google and other search engines:
    • Over half of the online population use social networking sites at least once a month – of these,around a quarter said they shared information on arts or cultural events with friends at least weekly
    • A further 15% of regular social networking users comment weekly on arts or cultural events whilst attending/watching.
  1. Brands are really important for audiences in discovering and filtering content online:
    • In general, people feel they need credible assistance from trusted cultural brands such as the National Trust and British Museum to help them decide which experiences to look into
    • These trusted brands are particularly important for older audience members who tend to be concerned about online security
    •  In addition, aggregator sites from trusted brands such as Guardian.co.uk, Time Out and View London play a key role – around half (54%) agree that they ‘prefer to use websites that have information from a range of sources and about a range of organisations’
  1. People who engage with arts and cultural content online tend to participate in the arts throughlive events as well – suggesting that digital media is more valuable as a means of reaching out to audiences that are already culturally engaged:
    1. Only 1% of the online population have engaged in arts and culture solely online (with no offline attendance or participation) in the past 12 months
    2. Attitudinally, those who can see the potential for digital media in arts and culture tend to be those who already enjoy arts and culture.
  2. People fall into five distinct segments based on their behaviour and attitudes to the arts and digital media. Three of these segments are of particular interest to arts and cultural organisations:
    1. Confident core (29%): Mainstream internet users, comfortable performing a range of tasks online, including purchasing tickets and using social and rich media. They have an active interest in the arts and culture and regularly attend or participate in live arts and cultural activities. This segment sees the internet as its primary channel for discovering, filtering, planning and buying tickets to live events
    2. Late adopters (21%): Show relatively low confidence online – they will use email, Google and a few trusted sites. They may book tickets online, but social media and the mobile internet remain amystery. This segment claims an active interest in the arts and culture although in practice they attend once in a while
    3. Leading edge (11%): Technophiles, displaying ‘early adopter’ behaviour such as regular mobile internet access and downloading creative software. Passionate about arts and culture and very participative. Avid users of social media to arrange or share/comment on an arts experience. High expectations (as a result of their engagement with the most sophisticated forms of digital entertainment) can limit their satisfaction with current online arts and cultural experiences.

1.3 Strategic implications for the sector

The findings from this report clearly show that the internet is changing the way we consume, share and create arts and cultural content and experiences.

As a result of these changes, arts and cultural organisations are faced with a dizzying array of opportunities for broadening and deepening their engagement with their audiences. The internet is a marketing and audience development tool, but also a core platform for booking tickets, distributing content and delivering immersive, participative arts experiences (be that a Twitter book club, a location based mobile app guiding us through an exhibition, or something entirely different).

However, this research also shows that the direct revenue opportunities associated with many of these opportunities can be limited. Although exciting, the internet can represent additional cost without any guarantee of additional revenue: arts organisations will need to strike a balance between ambition and pragmatism when deciding where to invest their money in digital media.

One area of investment which can yield clear financial returns is marketing and audience development. The internet is a key route to finding out what is on and then filtering and planning attendance at live events. Arts organisations that are skilled in digital marketing will (all other things being equal) see more people through their doors than ones that rely on a brochure ware website and email newsletters.

Equally, it is important not to relegate the internet to the role of marketing channel. Our respondents saw the Internet first and foremost as augmenting the live experience rather than replacing it, but this did not just mean providing listings and e-ticketing. The Leading edge segment welcome and already use the (sadly few) genuinely immersive and participative arts and cultural experiences that are already available online.

This report confirms that there is an appetite for the sector to innovate and create a new generation of experiences that take advantage of some of the internet’s unique characteristics – however challenging that may be given the current economic climate.

The opportunities are exciting, but they do represent an additional cost. Arts organisations will need to strike a balance between ambition and pragmatism when deciding where to invest their money in digital media, especially as the current business models do not guarantee additional direct revenue.”

 

 

 

 

 

 



[1] Donor cultivation in theory and practice. A Centre for Charitable Giving and Philanthropy / Arts & Business Scotland Discussion Paper © 2011 by Jenny Harrow, Tobias Jung, Hannah Pavey and Jeanie Scott, Centre for Charitable Giving and Philanthropy, Cass Business School, City University, London, United Kingdom.

[2] Increasing Individual Giving to the Arts: Evidence, Aspirations and Potential Barriers to Success, An Arts Quarter Study, July 2012

[3] Digital Giving in the Arts. Democratising Philanthropy, December 12 , Matthew Bowcock.

[4] Digital audiences: Engagement with arts and culture online – November 2010 MTM London