After updating its approach to data collection and sharing, Sadler’s Wells noticed a surge in email sign-ups for its visiting companies. Sebastian Cheswright Cater and Matt Kirby tell the story.
Sadler’s Wells is committed to developing audiences for dance at a local and national level. Data sharing plays an important part of that work. As both a venue and a touring producer, we have received requests from our touring company partners for data, as well as made requests for data from the venues we tour to.
“It proves that arts audiences want to hear from the companies whose work they’re seeing and are open to building relationships with touring companies.”
The 2016 Arts Council England (ACE) funding regulations set the sector a challenge to find a solution to data sharing. Through working in partnership with the Barbican, the Southbank Centre and Purple Seven, we collectively devised a practical response that satisfies ACE’s needs.
As an industry, we are all still in the early stages of developing best practice, but we have worked closely with our associate artists and companies, and National Portfolio Organisations (NPOs), to support them as they develop their own data protection systems and policies.
Before we began, we had two primary concerns about data protection regulations:
- Obtaining clear and actionable consent from ticket bookers for their data to be responsibly shared.
- Ensuring that any subsequent data transfer was tracked and secure, and clearly showed the demarcation point between ourselves and the company we are sharing data with, so that it’s clear where our legal responsibilities end and the touring company’s begins.
NPOs also raised concerns about the need for detailed audience insight reporting to assist them with their audience development strategies. Purple Seven’s VS: Touring solutionprovides detailed insight, and once this new data-sharing process is bedded in with our touring partners, we’ll be exploring further options in consultation with the sector.