What are ERIH members doing about site closures due to the Corona crisis? Is the online performance gaining importance and, if so, what are the preferred means of getting in touch with visitors – both past and future ones? Answers to these questions are provided by the online questionnaire we linked to in our last newsletter, with the results presented today.
First of all, we would like to thank the 50 sites that participated in the survey. 80 percent of them are increasingly focusing on online activities in order to keep communicating with their target groups. Nineteen participants or roughly fourty percent gained the best results with virtual tours of their exhibitions. Quizzes and competitions, oral history and online exhibitions rank below. Among numerous other online activities, we would like to particularly highlight the lovely idea of inviting local guides to use videos in order to introduce places that are usually closed to visitors, or to shoot video portraits of employees and their specific tasks.
Most of the teams involved in designing and producing the online content are small: one of two participants report a maximum of two people, one of three have three to four online editors. Ideas are mainly developed within the team, with inspiration and input coming from social media and other museums or ERIH sites. About half of the participants are planning to test new online formats, with seven teams even considering to add a new online channel. To ensure long-term benefits, a number of sites plan to pursue their newly launched online activities beyond Covid-19.
Among the 20 percent of participants who don’t increase their online activities, the majority report a lack of personnel or technical resources. Other sites are closed for some time anyway, due to renovation work.
Over the next few weeks, we will share some of the online activities indicated in the questionnaire on our ERIH Facebook page. Other ERIH members are also welcome to keep us updated about their online performance, either via Facebook Messenger or by sending an email to presse(at)erih.net.