Our February 26th 2015 IT4Arts workshop is going to take us into the world of social media, asking the question how can you improve your bottom line either directly or indirectly.

Some themes the workshop will cover include:

  • how to to put the enormous innovation and pace of change in social media into context and try to make sense of it all from the perspectives of small and large arts organisations
  • the social media balance: trying something new versus doing something that works
  • the need to experiment with new platforms, techniques and modes of engagement with audiences
  • measuring the effectiveness of digital activities to properly establish their value
  • how organizations can effectively harness the passion and opinions of their audience through reviews and debates alongside – and in conjunction with – traditional press coverage.v

When: Thursday 26th February 2015, coffee at 9.30 for a 10.00am start, ending at 4.30pm.

Where: The Art Fund, 2 Granary Square, Kings Cross N1C 4BH.

If you missed the fab February workshop or would like to relive the experience, many of the talks are available on a playlist of the WCIT YouTube channel, here.

Our Speakers & Their Topics

Jo Johnson

Jo is a Senior Marketing Manager at London Symphony Orchestra.

Sarah Ellis

Sarah is an award winning producer currently working as Head of Digital Development for the Royal Shakespeare Company. In 2013 she was listed in the top 100 most influential people working in Gaming and Technology by The Hospital Club. In 2013 in partnership with Google, she produced Midsummer Night’s Dreaming. In 2012, she produced myShakespeare for the World Shakespeare Festival. In 2011, she was the producer of the RSC’s Adelaide Road, which mixed live performance with an app and website map. As a producer, she has worked with the Old Vic Tunnels, Battersea Arts Centre, Birmingham REP, Contact, Freeword, Improbable, Southbank Centre, Soho Theatre, and Shunt. She has been Head of Creative Programmes at the Albany Theatre and Programme Manager for Apples & Snakes, England’s leading performance poetry organisation.

Ryan Nelson

Ryan is Digital Marketing Manager for the Barbican Centre, devising and implementing digital strategy for all audience-facing channels. He also co-commissions new and exciting digital projects for the Barbican, including wireless classical concerts, interactive essays and a sentimental search engine, as well as forging partnerships with Queen Mary University, Google and The Space. Before that, he was Online Editor and then Digital Manager at Shakespeare’s Globe, entirely redesigning their website and working on high-level projects such as Playing Shakespeare and the 2012 World Shakespeare Festival. He has written about how digital comms can be used to help (and sometimes hinder) audience engagement in the arts.

Rishi Coupland

Head of Audience Strategy

National Theatre

Alec McKinlay

Alec is Partner (and 25 year veteran) at Ignition, a UK based artist management, record and publishing company. Ignition management’s clients have included Oasis, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Crowded House and Johnny Marr. Ignition Records is one of the UK’s leading independent record companies. Established over ten years ago, they have achieved international success with the likes of Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Stereophonics, Primal Scream and Milky Chance. From starting their first artist website in 1995 through to creating and coordinating global multi platform marketing initiatives for million selling artists, Ignition have always been at the forefront of digital marketing, promotion and direct to consumer strategies in the entertainment industry.

Keep It Simple: Musings on digital communication from the world of Rock N Roll.

Sîan-Estelle Petty

Sîan-Estelle is Senior Digital Officer at Shakespeare’s Globe where she manages the Globe’s online community. This community consists of academics, theatregoers, Shakespeare enthusiasts, and tourists alike meaning she must be able to change tone and messaging quicker than an actor changes costume. In addition to this, Sîan-Estelle works on creating, commissioning and writing/recording/photographing content for digital (social, web and email) campaigns across Fundraising, Marketing and Retail. With a background in Fine Art and History of Art, Sîan-Estelle tries to look at things from a different angle in her quest to create engaging and thoughtful digital content and communities.

Chris Shipman

Chris is Content Producer (Social Media and News) for the Royal Opera House, home of the Royal Opera and the Royal Ballet. Before this he held a similar position at Glyndebourne Opera. He will be discussing the democratization of criticism, and how organizations can effectively harness the passion and opinions of their audience through reviews and debates alongside – and in conjunction with – traditional press coverage. Away from opera and ballet, he occasionally writes and reviews for rock music publications.

Martin Black

Martin is Chair of IT4Arts and has worked with many arts organisations on their software applications and digital projects. By profession he is a software development and integration project manager, and started coding when he was a teenager in the 1970s. Having seen the rise and fall of many technologies, and having used the internet since before search engines were invented, he is going to attempt (!) to put the enormous innovation and pace of change in social media into context and try to make sense of it all from the perspectives of small and large arts organisations.

Chris Unitt

Chris is the founder of One Further, a consultancy that works with clients in the cultural sector on a range digital projects covering strategy, content and analytics. Recent clients include Southbank Centre, the V&A and English National Opera.

Mar Dixon

Mar has fingers in many pies including culture, digital, publishing, wearables and tech sectors. She is creator of many projects such as MusoemixUK and MuseumCamp. She is the driving force behind acclaimed campaigns including #MuseumSelfie, #AskACurator, #MuseumWeek and #LoveTheatre. Mar speaks at many international conferences in additional to running workshops from small business to national museums and everything in between.

More About The Event

Fast and Furious

In addition to our main speakers, we are going to try a new and hopefully exciting format in this workshop.  Most of you will be familiar with fast-paced presentations where presenters are limited to 20 seconds a slide.  We are going to have four presentations of this kind. They will keep you on your toes, and if you like the fast pace, expect more of them in future.  Ryan Nelson of the Barbican will lead the way with a talk “How are you feeling? Sentiment, Social and Search” – a case study in how the Barbican is using technology to harness the power of peer recommendation.

RSVP: Please reply use the Enquiry form or email the IT4Arts chair – see Contact page for details. This workshop is only available to people who work at IT4Arts member arts and cultural organisations.

Joining Instructions: will be sent out about a week before the event.

Numbers are limited, so don’t leave it too late to book. If you would like to invite someone from an arts organisation which isn’t yet a member of IT4Arts, please ask them to make contact about joining first.

The Art Fund, 2 Granary Square, Kings Cross N1C 4BH


  • Date 26/02/2015


  • The Art Fund