by Flying Geese Consultant, Beckie Smith

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Theatre Royal Bath is a leading producing and receiving venue in the South West, in the middle of the tourist magnet City of Bath. They celebrate the very best of theatre and invest in it for future generations by hosting a programme of events, touring work, supporting artists, maintaining their Grade 11 Listed building and improving access to everything they do.

We were contracted by Theatre Royal Bath to lead a year-long transformation process to improve awareness, use, culture, understanding & implementation of data and insight across the organisation.


What did we do?

Our approach to this project took 4 main phases (research, recommendations & strategic planning, training and implementation).  They were then divided into smaller milestones.

Using the Data Maturity Framework from Data Kind, we ran a data health check assessment which provided a base-level performance for how data was used across Theatre Royal Bath in 7 different disciplines of data. 

Desk research was conducted that mapped Theatre Royal Bath’s current audiences, potential audiences, current donors, potential donors, user research across the theatre’s website, social media and email communications. 

A data audit was conducted to understand what type of data Theatre Royal Bath used across the theatre.

We held a number of facilitated workshops which led the team through strategic planning exercises so that we could explore the role of the marketing, sales and fundraising department’s objectives and how their roles are connected to creating an overarching strategic business plan.

Strategies were developed in connection to the agreed objectives which mainly centred around improving brand awareness, increasing first time attenders, deepening engagement within existing audiences, increasing the number of donors & value of donations and improving the culture of data across the organisation.

A series of training sessions were agreed, aimed at up-skilling the team with strategic thinking, examples of best practice, sector awareness and practical, hands on skills across a number of software and platforms.

Training sessions included:

  • Levelling up on audience development, marketing and promotion
  • Understanding audiences and stakeholders
  • Social media and email marketing skills
  • Building customer journeys using Spektrix and Dot Mailer
  • Using Audience Finder and Audience Agency resources
  • Introduction to Google Analytics
  • Introduction to Google Looker Studio

Flying Geese also created a series of toolkits, reporting templates, and resources for the team to use on a daily basis, to help them to read, understand and share data & insight.

Flying Geese worked with the team at Theatre Royal Bath to implement and deliver a series of individual work-based projects to enable the them to deliver the outputs connected to their new strategic objectives. Examples include: Creating a customer journey for lapsed bookers, delivering a marketing campaign in targeted areas to increase the number of first time attenders, the shaping of a new friends and members scheme, and delivering the communications campaign to guide existing donors through the transition.


Legacy and Impact

This project was a large scale transformation project for Theatre Royal Bath to change its approach, skills, and culture towards data as well as transforming how it collected, read, understood, and used the data to make forward thinking strategic changes to the organisation.

The initial research phase gave the team essential insight into their current and potential audiences and donors so that marketing campaigns could be better informed, better targeted and better managed. Key performance statistics for the theatre’s website, social media and email marketing were shared which enabled the team to make both small, quick fixes to optimise results and more substantial changes that really impacted the functionality and engagement with their platforms.

As a result of this project, the team now have a clear plan for the short, medium and long term that will continue their journey of data maturity across the whole organisation. There is a dedicated, cross departmental data taskforce that meets monthly to discuss key performance data, challenge its integrity and ensure that the wider team understand what the data is saying and what they can do to optimise results.

Active marketing campaigns are now in place that seek to increase first time attendance, re-engage lapsed bookers, deepen engagement with infrequent attenders, increase the number of donations and increase the size of donations.

Flying Geese built a series of data reporting platforms which display key performance data connected to key campaigns, which automatically populate, allowing the team to dip in and out to monitor results and make changes where necessary. A data maturity dashboard was also created which centralised all of the theatre’s data and the work connected to this project, so any team member whether intrinsically linked to this project, or brand new, can access the data dashboard and have access to all data, research, strategic plans, training, platforms and live campaign results.

The team feel more confident, more empowered and more knowledgeable in how to obtain data, understand what it tells them and what this might mean for their future activity, especially within their marketing & communications, fundraising and box office & sales departments. There is a more welcoming approach to data, with an increased sense of value amongst team members, the senior management team and the Board of Directors.