Whilst trawling through an unused inbox I came across a newsletter from Americans for the Arts which pointed me in the direction of a handy article by Peter Linnet – Thinking About Audience Research? Four Rules for the Perplexed. It’s a bit of a must-read if you’re considering doing some research – here’s a choice quote to get you interested:
Research is about improvement. If you’re not going to program, market, schedule, fundraise, price, package, interact, design, educate, budget, plan, or something differently based on what you learn, then why bother asking your audience questions in the first place?
Which brings us to rule number one: Don’t start with what you want to know. Start with what you want to do.
It’s all good stuff, and echoes our approach to audience research here at AL: there’s little point finding things out for the sake of it – before you start thinking of the questions you want to ask, make sure you know what you want to be able to do with the findings!
Part one can be found here, with the part two due in coming weeks.
EDIT – Part two is now up – more good stuff here