Thursday, 27 May 2010

Cold War Modern at V&A

"Our marketing objectives for the whole exhibition campaign were to not only bring in visitors to the exhibition, but also to further enhance the V&A’s reputation as a contemporary and accessible institution and an inspirational leader in its field." [Appleby, 2010]
The exhibition Cold War Modern 1945–1970 at the V&A in 2008 "was the first exhibition to examine contemporary design, architecture, film and popular culture on both sides of the Iron Curtain during the Cold War era" with over 300 exhibits from a satellite to designers' furnitures, as well as covering "how scientific advances during the Cold War inspired much of today’s cutting-edge technology from iPhones to the internet" [Appleby, 2010].

"As a consequence we were very keen to engage 26–45 year olds, particularly those with an interest in the internet, technology and science fiction", notes Appleby [2010]. The V&A team aimed to "create an online buzz around the show" and commissioned 1000heads, a global word of mouth agency to "entice a network of design-savvy bloggers to write about the exhibition": 1000heads then identified suitable bloggers, "developing and placing the digital and real-world clues, and tracking the resulting online activity".

Over 30 bloggers cracked the clues, attended the preview and posted online reviews of the exhibition; "the exhibition was mentioned in 50 different online ‘venues’ and there were 328 separate posts about it – giving a total of 90,000 trackable engagements (the amount of hits on the webpages where it was discussed)"; and 13% of the visitors answered they were informed through a website or blog. Additionally, the gallery created relationship with a new group of influencers.

Appleby, E. [2010] Case Study: The Bloggers who Came in from the Cold. [Online] [27/05/2010]

1000heads (2010) Who are We? [Online] [27/05/2010]
Cold War Modern [2010] [27/05/2010]
Cold War Modern Channel [2010] [27/05/2010]