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July 24, 2012


Rob Landry

I'm aware of some museums who have offered (specific types) of Groupon deals for membership. The jury is out at this point as to whether they acquired new members this way or simply invited existing members to re-up for a discounted rate.

Max A. van Balgooy

I've worked with a few historic sites that offered Daily Deals. They were pleased by the response, but the cost was high (ultimately, it's 75% reduction in revenue) and it's unclear that there's a signficant longterm impact. Seems that most places are pursuing it to boost attendance, and not part of a larger strategy or to build lasting relationships with their audiences.


When I was working at a contemporary arts center, we offered a Groupon for museum admission and coffee in the cafe. It went over well, but we were careful to be sure we didn't lose money on it. When we looked at offering membership, we just couldn't make the financials work (too much overhead with staff, mailings, events, etc.).


I am working on my master's thesis, which looks at models for offering free or reduced admissions to under-served audiences. From my research and my personal experience working in museums, I completely agree that free days or pay-what-you-wish days are not effective in gaining a new and sustaining audience. I would be very interested in your data collected regarding this topic. Would you be able to provide me with this? Thanks!

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