In 2019, after being closed for eight months to undergo a $6 million capital campaign to renovate and add permanent live animal exhibits featuring dozens of mollusks species, the Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum in Sanibel, Florida, turned to PCI to reshape its storytelling.
The Museum, the only one in the U.S. focused on mollusks and the shells they create, needed to emphasize the importance of conserving and protecting these key species, while driving increased visitation to see the new hands-on experience.
More than 80 percent of the Museum’s guests are tourists, rather than residents of Sanibel. And most guests, called by the siren song of the beaches, don’t visit the Museum until their second or third visit to the island. PCI focused on showing those tourists that the Museum is a riveting “must-do,” not a second choice saved for stormy days.
KEY PROGRAM ACTIVITIES
Analyzed visitor demographics to create personas for each key target audience:
• Families vacationing on Sanibel Island
• Local and regional residents, especially families
• People interested in ocean conservation, malacology and the Museum’s scientific work.
Analyzed a year’s worth of existing news coverage and the Museum’s existing digital communications (owned and shared channels) against digital marketing best practices and social media trends, including:
• Commonly used hashtags related to Museums and conservation science
• Engagement rate and other social media metrics
• Email marketing conversions.
Increased followers by +11%, nearing 11,000
Increased Average post reach by 54%, nearing 2,500
Increased audience reach by 30,000 with top posts garnering thousands of reactions (comments, shares, click-throughs)
Increased engagements on the photo-driven social site by 40%, with comments up 312% and likes up 35%.