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    Arts Marketing Essay (3889 words)

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    Today’s arts managers are well informed about current marketing theory and acknowledge its strategic importance tort the arts. Many to them have acquired their marketing knowledge by studying standard marketing textbooks as well as specialized publications on arts marketing and by following courses (Barrooms 1 998), The proliferation of arts marketing has been accompanied by an increasing number of academic publications. Quite a few books have been published on this subject (e. G.

    Make et al, 1980; Kettle & Chefs 1997; Barrooms 1998; Kettle & Kettle 1398; Kola 2000; Collect et al. 2001; Klein 2001) and an increasing number f articles are being published in leading journals (Renascence 20021 Renascence’s examination of these publications shows that the focus during the past decades has evolved from marketing as a functional tool to a focus on marketing as a business philosophy and strategy. During the past 25 years, arts marketing seems to have developed into a mature academic discipline (Renascence 2002).

    Renascence (2002) identifies the publications of Kettle and Chefs (1997) and Kettle and Kettle (1998) as leading texts on strategic arts marketing that have helped to extend the interest in marketing as a business philosophy. According to these texts, arts marketing programmer should begin by addressing fundamental questions such as: Moo is the International Journal of Cultural Policy, Volvo. 12, No. 1, 2006 SINS 1028-6632 print/SINS 1477-2833 online 106/010073-20 c 2006 Taylor & Francis DOI: 10, 1080/10286630600613333 74 MIRANDA BARROOMS customer? What does the customer value? And how can we create more value for the customer? (Kettle & Chefs 1997, p. 31). The authors promote a “customer- centered” organizational mindset, which requires that the arts organization systematically studies consumers’ needs and wants, perceptions and attitudes, as well as their preferences and levels of satisfaction, and acts on this information to improve vat is offered (Kettle & Chefs 1997, p. 34). They assume that the customer-value approach, Which has proved to be successful in commercial business, is also the best approach for marketing the arts as long as it is applied Within the constraints Of the artistic mission.

    The basic principle of the customer-value approach is that the patronage of customers is best attracted by the creation Of value for these customers. This line Of thinking seems plausible, but is not undisputed. There is some evidence that performance can also decline when arts organizations are too customer focused. Voss and Voss (2000), for example, measured the impact of product orientation and customer orientation on subscriber ticket sales, total income and net surplus/deficit in professional theatres, and found that customer orientation results in a negative association with these performance criteria.

    These findings indicate that the customer approach seems to have limitations. 1 Other scholars, such as Cast (2003) and Nielsen (2003) go even further and postulate fundamental objections o the adoption of businesslike language and philosophies in the arts scene. They claim that this inevitably increases the risk to making artistic sacrifices. Cast (2003, p, 58) explicitly warns that a businesslike approach “will lead to the production of safe, consumer-oriented arts products which, in the end, may not be what the audience either wants or needs”.

    This unintended effect can be called the “arts marketing pitfall”. The cases for and against the customer- value approach are both well thought out. Both views contain important truths. Therefore it is not wise to reject the customer-value approach prematurely, or o copy the marketing philosophy of commercial business indiscriminately. Also, there is no doubt that most artists and arts organizations need an audience and that audience building is one Of the main tasks Of arts management.

    The question then arises as to how to implement a customer-centered mindset at the strategic level Of arts organizations Without ending up facing the arts marketing pitfall. This article explores the question by combining arts marketing ideas with some recent insights from philosophical and psychological aesthetics and proposes a strategic concept for arts marketing that balances customer value tit artistic value. Evading or Bridging the Arts Marketing Pitfall? Leading textbooks such as Kettle and Chefs (1997), Kettle and Kettle (1998), Collect et al. 2001) and Klein (2001) otter systematic and practical overviews of how current marketing knowledge can be applied to the arts. The authors of these textbooks have recognized the arts marketing pitfall and have developed a line of thinking intended to evade it, Like most arts marketing scholars, they exclude the artistic product – the core product – from the arts marketing task. Kettle and Chefs (1 997, p. 34) suggest that the customer-centered approach would not be applied to the artwork itself, but instead applied to the way the work is described, priced, packaged, enhanced and delivered.

    They define a customer-centered organization “as one that makes every effort to sense, serve, and satisfy the needs and wants of its clients and publics within the constraints of its mission and budget” (Kettle & Chefs 1997, p. 36). The role of arts marketing is considered to be one of indirectly supporting the accomplishment Of the arts organization’s artistic mission by increasing attendance and generating funds, but not one that defines that mission (Kettle & Kettle 1998, p. 22).

    Collect (2003) states: “The artistic product does not exist to fulfill a market need Instead of seeking to meet consumers’ needs by offering them a product they desire, the arts manager seeks consumers who are attracted to the product”, These views on arts marketing and the solutions designed to evade the arts marketing pitfall are based upon the (implicit) assumption of a romantic conception of art as an autonomous phenomenon. With the assumption of autonomy, artistic creation and arts marketing can be defined as independent tasks, each maintaining its own logic and responsibilities.

    This ultimately presupposes that the arts marketing task of finding and building audiences can be undertaken without affecting or changing the artistic results. From a managerial point of view, this is a convenient stand, but unfortunately it is out of step with recent developments within philosophical aesthetics. Contemporary philosophers of art have become more and more critical of the concept of autonomous art. The autonomy of art is a modernist concept. According to Invite (2001), modernists tend toward the view that art is a self-contained phenomenon and it tan be defined on the basis of intrinsic properties.

    They assume that there are clear boundaries that distinguish art from life. Since the postmodern turn, Which took place during the second half of the Pointiest century, the arts and philosophical thought about art seem to have moved further and further away from this view (e. G. Schaeffer 1998; Invite 2001). Nowadays the arts are seen as a culturally and socially embedded phenomenon and considered the product of social interaction. This relational view has implications for the concept of artistic value.

    The assumption that artistic value can be realized autonomously, independently of the patronage f arts consumers, is no longer valid, Artistic value goes beyond the product in terms of its form. Steersman (2001), for instance, advocates the pragmatist view within philosophical aesthetics – based on the legacy of Dewey – as representing an excellent point of departure for today’s aesthetic thinking. For this pragmatism, the experience of art ? and not the artifact itself ? is the final criterion to artistic_ value (Steersman 2001 , p. 101).

    The philosopher Schaeffer (1998, p. 47) also emphasizes the importance of the experience of art and claims that “in today’s world the relationship between art-making and reception can no monger be ignored or considered extrinsic to the core of art as art”. 2 Within the relational perspective, cosmogonist and aestheticism can be distinguished as rival views on artistic value (Kiering 2001). These views agree on the notion that the value of art lies in its evocation of a specific response, but they ivory with different conceptions of this response.

    Aestheticism emphasize the distinctness of aesthetic pleasure and cosmogonists point to a particular cognitive-affective response. According to Kiering both views contain important truths about the value of art and should be treated as complementary lines of thinking – the appropriateness Of one or the Other depends upon the particular art forms and genres, ranging from abstract art and pure music to representational art forms such as film and literature. Both views, however, purport that a work Of art needs the confrontation with an audience to be able to function as art and to contribute as such to the achievement Of the artistic Objectives. In this article, the relational perspective is adopted and it is presumed that art production and consumption are essentially communicative acts. Art production is understood as a specific form of language construction – the creation of new, authentic adaptors which break down existing aesthetic symbol systems and create new ones (Goodman 1976; Ebbing 2002, up. 28-29). The art consumer plays a crucial role in the final stage of this process. Art consumption is the criterion – the touchstone – that determines whether a meaningful new metaphor is created (Barrooms I egg, 2002).

    Thus, artistic value emerges in the confrontation with an audience. The philosophical turn to the relational view Of art implies that the art consumer has changed from a passive recipient into an active participant. Arts consumers provide a valuable nutrition to the achievement Of the artistic Objectives. They complete the work of art by giving meaning to the new metaphor and by acknowledging its artistic value. The audience takes part in the “to-production” Of artistic value. The adoption of the relational concept of art has important consequences for the presuppositions of arts marketing theory.

    The idea of the arts consumer as a co-producer of art forces a redefinition of the role and scope of arts marketing as marketing activities aimed at influencing the behavior of arts consumers, by definition, interfere with artistic performance, under the relational view, arts marketing has a direct influence on the accomplishment of the artistic objectives and becomes responsible for the co-creative role of arts consumers. The exploration and conceptualization of these new responsibilities is becoming an increasingly important academic challenge.

    The integration of the relational perspective into arts marketing theory does not undermine the groundbreaking work that has been done by arts marketing researchers in the last AS years, but some parts of the framework need to be reassessed and additional concepts need to be developed. It is especially important to redefine the arts marketing objectives and to rethink the customer-value concept as a strategic logic for arts marketing The minimization of audience numbers and the generation of funds are important marketing objectives.

    These objectives remain important, but they should be supplemented with an even more important objective ? that of optimizing and supporting the consumers co-creative role in the artistic process. The latter requires arts marketing programmer to begin with a strategic logic that incorporates this co-creative role into a customer-value approach. This implies that the link between customer value and artistic value must be conceptualized. The challenge is to build a bridge over the arts marketing pitfall instead of trying to evade it.

    The construction Of such a bridge must Start With the foundations. Thus, the next section re-evaluates the first principles of marketing in the light Of a relational perspective on arc The above considerations are especially relevant to organizations that produce and/or distribute contemporary arts. To organizations that concentrate on the preservation and disclosure of historical works, the completion of the art process by the art consumer is no longer a major objective as the artistic value has already been established.

    The following discussion is focused on the role of marketing in relation to the contemporary arts, especially the performing arts as these cannot be preserved and their artistic objectives need to he completed by the audience in the present. 4 Back to First Principles: Exchange of Values Kettle and Chefs (1 997, p. 31) define marketing management “as the analysis, planning, implementation, and control of programmer designed to create, build, and maintain beneficial exchange relationships with target audiences for the purpose of achieving the marketer’s objectives”. The key feature of this definition s the focus on exchange relationships.

    The focus on exchange has its roots in the asses, When Kettle ( 1 972) proposed his much cited “generic concept of marketing’ – the stimulation and facilitation of “the exchange of values between two parties”. The core idea is that the organization creates values for customers that satisfy their needs, while, in return, customers deliver values that contribute to the achievement of the organization’s main objectives. Marketing’s primary task is to optimize these exchange relationships. Kettle claimed that the exchange model could be applied to all organizations that have customers ND products.

    Since the publication of Jostler’s generic concept of marketing, the exchange model has become one of the foundations of marketing thought. Marketing programmer must start with the identification of the exchange values by asking the following: What are the desired responses from customers and what do customers receive in return? Exchange of values has been traditionally conceived of as the market exchange of goods and services in return for money and other means that contribute to the economic success and survival of an organization. All organizations are engaged one way or another in market exchange relationships.

    Arts organizations do not constitute an exception. Audience numbers, earned income from customers and customer loyalty are desired market responses that enable arts organizations to survive and to build up the assets required to continue to create works of art in the future. The general theory concerning how to optimize market responses is to create customer values that are “superior” to the values Offered by the competition and to search constantly for new ways to satisfy the customers’ needs (e. G. Webster 1994). This view ? Which has become known as the customer-value orientation – has its limitations in its application to the arts.

    The pursuit of customer satisfaction and competitive superiority only applies to the arts on the condition that it does not compromise the artistic mission. As mentioned before, this limited version of the customer-value approach has become widely accepted within the academic literature on arts marketing strategy. The current position is that, in the ever more competitive world of leisure and tourism, arts organizations will have to compete by offering entire experiences, including recreational, social and learning experiences (e. G.

    Kettle 1999; Kettle & Kettle 000; Roadrunner 2002; Renascence & Gilmore 2002), This view, however, needs to be reassessed. The adoption of a relational perspective on art implies that arts organizations are not only engaged in market exchange relationships with their customers, but are also involved in artistic exchange relationships. Arts organizations also seek artistic responses from their audiences, for, as explained above, the arts consumer plays a crucial role in the art process by giving meaning to the artistic metaphor _ This co-creative response is vital to the achievement of the organization’s artistic mission.

    Because the relation tit customers belongs primarily to the realm of marketing, the facilitation and stimulation of artistic responses should also be seen as one of the primary objectives of arts marketing. The customer’s co-creative response is more than one of just buying or attending the work of art, it requires specific skills and efforts on the part Of the customer. The questions then arise Whether and how the customer-value approach can contribute to the optimization of these responses.

    Satisfying customers and competing Within the entertainment industry are ways of raising attendance and revenue, but they do not necessarily narrate the desired co. Creative responses. Moreover, the arts marketing promise not to compromise the artistic mission does not go far enough. This promise must be replaced by the “obligation” to contribute to the artistic mission. We may conclude that the adoption of the relational perspective has implications for the implementation of the customer-value approach.

    Before we can explore these implications, we must know how arts consumers should complete the work of art, and what kinds of customer values arts consumers receive in return for their co-creative efforts, These issues will be discussed in the next section, 8 Artistic Experience and Customer Value Most contemporary thinkers in philosophical aesthetics see the arts as a specific source of knowledge; as a source of insight and fresh awareness that cannot be put into words, but which allows people to perceive the world in a new viva. The arts expand cognitive horizons by challenging pre-existing beliefs and understandings, leading to more distinctive or broader perspectives on ourselves, Others and the world (Kiering 2001, p. 221). TO give meaning to a work of art – in the sense of creating a new metaphor – requires constructive, creative activity by the art consumer. TO give meaning is not a matter Of deduction, but is rather a matter of using imaginative powers.

    Deduction does not result in the creation of new meaning. This can only arise when the consumer resolves the tension between the sensory perception of the new metaphor and their own worldview by means of their imaginative powers in free play, which is to be free from a prejudiced determination based in pre-existing concepts and external interests.

    Constructing new meaning in this way is what provides consumers with an artistic experience (Van Mean 1997, 2004; Barrooms BIBB), In a sense his view corresponds in part to what Kant (1994 [1 790]) described as the essence of aesthetic judgments. It is, however, not only the sensory stimulation by the tort – by the aesthetic qualities – but also the interruption of the consumers’ perceptual system and the subsequent production of new meaning that touches the consumer and provides pleasure (CT.

    Shoemakers 1992). The consumer will attach value to the cognitive outcome, but more importantly, the process of assimilation and the accommodation of the perceptual system arouse emotions such as excitement and admiration (Pravda 1986)_ Art challenges the cognitive, recapture and emotional systems simultaneously as the artistic experience is characterized by the full engagement of these mental capacities and goes far beyond the experience of pleasure in the narrow sense (Goldman 2001 , p. 188).

    The artistic experience is a rewarding value that consumers receive in return for their efforts to complete the work of art. 6 This value is not created for the customer, but created in cooperation With the customer. Monroe Beardsley – a well-known scholar in psychological aesthetics in the Deanna tradition – describes the artistic experience as a willing surrender to the phenomenal object n which attention is fixed “with a feeling that things are working or have worked themselves out fittingly” (Beardsley 1982, p. 288).

    The core of Beardsley theory is formed by the proposition that an experience has artistic character if it has this feature of “object directness” and at least three of four other features. One of these other features is called “active discovery”: “A sense of actively exercising constructive powers of the mind, to being challenged by a variety of potentially conflicting stimuli to try to make them cohere” (Beardsley 1 982, p, Beardsley (1982, p. 92) considers the experience to discovery to be one of the central components of the artistic experience, His theory is much cited, though not always without criticism. Nevertheless, it is still considered to be a relevant line of thinking in today’s philosophical discourse on the psychology of the artistic experience (CT. Fanner 2003), and can offer valuable clues for the empirical measurement of artistic experiences (e. G. Everyman 20041 Beardsley claims that the artistic experience is unique to the arts, but he admits that some of its features also apply – to a certain degree – to other events such as religious experiences, sporting climaxes and scientific discovery.

    The challenge of discovery and the highly focused state of consciousness that characterize the artistic experience are also characteristics of the so-called “flow experience (e. G. Sentimentally & Robinson 1990; Hamster 1994, p. 102; Everyman 2004). Flow tends to occur in activities such as mountain climbing, playing chess or performing complex surgery, but also in activities such as reading, listening to music and watching a theatre performance. How occurs when the activity demands concentrated attention and challenges a person’s skills.

    Flow experiences have been theorized and empirically researched exhaustively by the psychologist Sentimentally_ The characteristics tool are the deep and concentrated involvement in risky or difficult tasks that challenge and extend the person’s capacity, an element of novelty and discovery, and the enjoyment of the activity for own sake (Sentimentally 1996, Chapter g). Plow experiences are quite the opposite of feelings of comfort and relaxation that people usually experience while they are engaged in passive entertainment such as watching a television quiz.

    Such arms of passive entertainment give pleasure without expending energy. They are found to be relaxing but relatively unchallenged activities (Sentimentally & Cube 1981). Sentimentally found that flow experiences occur more often in situations where the challenge to achieve something, to solve a problem or to create something, is enhanced. Flow-producing activities require an initial investment of attentiveness before they begin to become enjoyable, and overcoming this initial obstacle requires discipline. It is hard to draw a clear line between artistic experiences and flow experiences.

    The specific nature of he artistic experience is connected to the specific qualities of the stimulus – the new aesthetic metaphor – and the specific skills of the consumer to whom the stimulus appeals – the creative imagination, The artistic experience can be seen as a specific form of the flow experience, and it is the customer value that the art consumer receives in return for the completion of the work of art. Fifth art consumer regards the artistic experience as a valuable, important customer benefit, then this could be a starting point for the implementation of the customer-value approach as a means to optimize artistic exchange.

    In that case, arts marketing programs must focus on the artistic experience as the core customer value. To find out whether the artistic experience is an important benefit sought by arts consumers or not, research is needed to examine the reasons why people attend the arts. Within the scope of arts marketing research, relatively few academic scholars have investigated these motives, The next section discusses the present state of these investigations. What Does the Art Consumer Value?

    Marketing research into the benefits Of art consumption is still in the early Stage of explorations (Collect 2003). Two pioneering breakthroughs in behavioral research that inspired these explorations were: first, the conceptualization Of hedonistic or experiential consumption (Hiroshima & Holbrook 1982; Holbrook & Hiroshima 1982); and second, the study by Broodier (1984) into the social factors that play a part in the judgment of taste. These investigations are discussed below.

    Hedonistic Benefits of Arts Consumption The hedonistic perspective analyses the choices of consumers not in terms of the product’s utility, but on the basis of the pleasure, hedonistic fulfillment, emotional arousal, amusement, and imaginary and sensory stimulation experienced by the consumer. The focus is on the experiences that accompany product usage, Unlike the utilitarian perspective, the hedonistic perspective emphasizes the dynamic interaction between consumer and product. Arts and other leisure activities are typical examples of experiential products. They are consumed primarily for intrinsic rewards – for the experience itself.

    The extrinsic utilitarian rewards are considered Of minor importance. The consumption Of utilitarian products is generally studied using the rational problem-solving model for analyzing Objective product characteristics in relation to their utilitarian value. In contrast, hedonistic consumption decisions are less rational and often based on exploitative search behavior and holistic impressions (Holbrook & Hiroshima 1982). The hedonistic perspective has inspired arts marketing researchers to identify emotions as one of the core benefits of arts consumption (e. . Holbrook & Sirloin 1985; Woods 1 987; Bidder-Papillae 1 999; Bottom 2000; Burgeon- Renault 2000; quadrant & Moll 2000: Collect 2003) and to advocate a “total experience’ approach to arts marketing management (e. G. Kettle & Kettle 1 998, 2000: Kettle 1999; Kola 2000). Some of these studies, in particular those that are psychologically oriented, attempted to conceptualize the emotional response to artistic stimuli and the motives tort seeking these emotions using Berliners (1971) arousal theory (Holbrook & Sirloin 1 985; Woods 1987).

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