#CultureTrack17: Girls Just Wanna Have Fun…Boys, About 8% Less

According to the 4,035 consumers included in LaPlaca Cohen’s Culture Track 2017 report, the single greatest motivating factor for participating in a cultural event is to have fun.

That’s not an insignificant point.

At the same time, when we drill down into the raw data results for just Classical Music events, respondents found having fun to be the third highest motivators (kudos to #CultureTrack17 for providing so much transparency!):

  • Relaxing or feeling less stressed: Agree (NET) 82%, Disagree (NET), 3%
  • Interest in the content: Agree (NET) 80%, Disagree (NET), 3%
  • Having fun: Agree (NET) 74%, Disagree (NET), 4%
  • Feeling transported to another place: Agree (NET) 75%, Disagree (NET), 5%
  • Feeling inspired: Agree (NET) 74%, Disagree (NET), 5%
  • Feeling like it gives life a deeper meaning: Agree (NET) 70%, Disagree (NET), 5%
  • Experiencing new things: Agree (NET) 72%, Disagree (NET), 4%
  • Learning something new: Agree (NET) 67%, Disagree (NET), 5%
  • Broadening my perspective or worldview: Agree (NET) 70%, Disagree (NET), 5%
  • Supporting the cultural world: Agree (NET) 66%, Disagree (NET), 7%
  • Feeling welcome: Agree (NET) 60%, Disagree (NET), 4%
  • Having grown up participating in it: Agree (NET) 52%, Disagree (NET), 21%
  • Being able to go by myself: Agree (NET) 52%, Disagree (NET), 17%
  • Bettering my health/well-being: Agree (NET) 58%, Disagree (NET), 10%
  • Connecting to my community: Agree (NET) 48%, Disagree (NET), 15%
  • Interacting with friends and/or family: Agree (NET) 52%, Disagree (NET), 11%

NOTE: you can find the Classical Music only response data in the Banner 1 tab, rows 16766 through 17997 in the raw data spreadsheet.

These results inspire all sorts of questions, not the least of which are when some of the data runs contrary to the Knight Foundation’s Magic of Music findings.

For example, Culture Track 2017 results indicate “Having grown up participating in [classical music]” was a comparatively low motivator (Agree (NET) 52%, Disagree (NET), 21%). But the Knight Foundation’s final report indicated that was a stronger motivator: “There is growing evidence that participatory music education – primarily instrumental lessons, ensemble and choral programs – will turn people into ticket buyers later in life” (page 8).

If you take the time to dig into the raw data, be sure to look for outlier results among the Generations, Age, Ethnicity, disability, Sexual Orientation, Parent, and Employment Categories.

One good example is the “Interest in the content” data where 80% of respondents indicated they agreed that was a strong motivator, only 43% of Gen Z respondents felt the same way.

And speaking of the raw data, although the charts, graphs, and summary statements in the main report are all kinds of terrific, digging into those spreadsheets is essential if you don’t want to be some sort of I-only-read-the-headlines-arm-chair-analyst-data-poser low life.

Raw Data Goodness

Have you been through the data yet? If so, what’s jumping out at you?

About Drew McManus

"I hear that every time you show up to work with an orchestra, people get fired." Those were the first words out of an executive's mouth after her board chair introduced us. That executive is now a dear colleague and friend but the day that consulting contract began with her orchestra, she was convinced I was a hatchet-man brought in by the board to clean house.

I understand where the trepidation comes from as a great deal of my consulting and technology provider work for arts organizations involves due diligence, separating fact from fiction, interpreting spin, as well as performance review and oversight. So yes, sometimes that work results in one or two individuals "aggressively embracing career change" but far more often than not, it reinforces and clarifies exactly what works and why.

In short, it doesn't matter if you know where all the bodies are buried if you can't keep your own clients out of the ground, and I'm fortunate enough to say that for more than 15 years, I've done exactly that for groups of all budget size from Qatar to Kathmandu.

For fun, I write a daily blog about the orchestra business, provide a platform for arts insiders to speak their mind, keep track of what people in this business get paid, help write a satirical cartoon about orchestra life, hack the arts, and love a good coffee drink.

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