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The Royal Shakespeare Company

Introduction

The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) regularly performs Shakespeare’s plays and work, with over a million visitors that come to the theatre each year. RSC wanted to work on their strategic audience development strategy, after detailed research from the head of marketing revealed that a very high percentage of theatre goers were from white, middle class backgrounds.   If they didn’t address their audience diversity, they would find themselves in problems in years to come.

Approach

We worked with RSC head of marketing and the team, to develop a creative strategy of how to diversify their audience development.   We developed a short and medium-term plan that enabled the RSC to develop new relationships and understanding of new audiences.

We helped to capture the thoughts and feelings of how diverse audiences felt about the RSC, using our Values Based Networking (VBN) that creates a suitable environment to gain real insight into the changes they needed to make as a company. We also facilitated a number of strategic visits where hundreds of diverse and new audience members were able to access the RSC many of whom were first time theatre goers.

Impact

RSC has reported a greater take up of diverse audience members.  Staff members changed their approach and behaviour when welcoming new and diverse audiences.   RSC also changed their marketing material, it became more culturally appropriate, including diversifying the locations where marketing materials were placed.

Subsequently we have been involved with a photoshoot that was around changing the art and interior design of the environment. Including posters that now represent more diverse audiences.

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