Doing more with less: Understanding the contributions of regional art gallery members through marketing segmentation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Moreover it provides a greater understanding of the membership base and how various members are engaging with theirinstitution. Current methods of marketing are becoming less ideal to obtain marketing objectives, withdiminishing returns to scale on marketing programmes an issue.Practical implications ' An understanding of the differences between each of these member typeswill allow galleries to more efficiently use their finite resources. By tailoring offerings to each of thedifferent segments galleries can maximise the value of their membership base. Further, the use ofsegmentation enables gallery managers to identify segments where members may be less or notengaged and its causes and potential solutions.Social implications ' Many non-profit organisations with a membership base, such as the artgalleries sampled in this research, rely on the contribution of their membership to survive. Thereforeunderstanding the relationship between the institution and the membership is important.Originality/value ' The paper is unique in the application of segmentation analysis to examinegallery members. It also furthers the current understanding of identification and its role in therelationship between organisation members and their behaviour as members. That is the role ofidentification in relationship marketing.Purpose ' The purpose of this paper is to develop insight regarding art gallery members'identification with their galleries through the use of segmentation. The antecedents of a member'sidentification and subsequent involvement with the gallery are explored. Within the four regional artgalleries analysed, the authors identify three different segments within the membership groups whichillustrate the ways in which gallery members, who identify positively with their gallery, contribute tothe organisation through behaviours such as the donation of time and money.Design/methodology/approach ' A mixed methods approach was used, including 11 in-depthinterviews with gallery staff and members and a survey (n¼433) of gallery members. The in-depthinterviews were interpreted using content analysis and thematic analysis. The survey results wereanalysed using exploratory factor analysis and cluster analysis.Findings ' The paper's findings suggest that gallery members can be differentiated in terms ofthe way that they contribute to their art gallery. Three types were identified: promoters, donors andcommittee members. A number of constructs were used to distinguish between each of the segments,including: member identification, satisfaction, prestige, visibility, contact quality and domaininvolvement from the current arts marketing literature. Four other constructs which emerged from thequalitative research were also used to profile the clusters: self-enhancement, organisational culture,social responsibility and elitism which emerged from the qualitative research.Research limitations/implications ' Profiling different segments in the market (membership)using sociodemographics, attitudes and donating behaviours allows marketers and managers to moreeffectively target the segments who can positively contribute to the organisation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-55
Number of pages17
JournalArts Marketing: An International Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011


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