Consumers need Opportunity for Self-Expression and Creativity

By Victoria Doidge, Director Marketing, Communications and Customer Service, Sydney Opera House

“Consumers are increasingly disenfranchised with simplistic advertising and want to be engaged with a richer narrative via platforms on which they can participate in the conversation,” says Victoria Doidge, Director of Marketing, Communications and Customer Service at the Sydney Opera House. Entertainment companies have been particularly challenged by changes in customer needs. The necessity to create content that will engage wider audiences and change their perception, has given rise to the Sydney Opera House embracing social, video and mobile platforms. “We have been focussed on building deeper and more interactive relationships with our customers,” Doidge explains.

Starting with the Ship Song Project, and moving to the recent live streaming of Vivid Events on YouTube, Doidge has managed to create an innovative digital content strategy based on engaging and immersive content. “To love (or even like) a brand, the contemporary consumer needs to be afforded some opportunity for self-expression and creativity,” Doidge affirms.

Thanks to a partnership with Google at the Vivid Festival, Doidge and her team have leveraged innovative technologies to bring content to their audiences wherever in the world they might be. Doidge says “Google and the Sydney Opera House have similar values around democratisation of content and technology so we are incredibly aligned in terms of vision. For the Vivid LIVE Festival this year they created a custom gadget which allows users to manipulate the view via multiple cameras, to zoom in and out and perhaps most importantly to take photos of the concerts and socialise. So it really added to the experience of being there live as it happened.”

Social media and mobile are now essential in the marketing mix as they help drive engagement, stimulate discussions and promote brands. In a world that is socially connected, it is vital to use all available platforms to communicate with global audiences. “We have a big vision for transforming the visitor experience around a social-local-mobile product development. Some 450,000 people have checked in to Sydney Opera House in the last year, without any prompting, so we believe there is instinctive consumer behaviour to engage via mobile whilst on our site,” says Doidge.

The opportunity to use innovative marketing ideas and techniques should be constantly seized. “Personally I think innovation in marketing is the nexus of compelling story telling, smart (but not gratuitous) use of technology and appropriate media partnership executions,” notes Doidge.

To hear Victoria Doidge, Director of Marketing, Communications and Customer Service at the Sydney Opera House present on “creating an award winning online digital strategy” register for ADMA Forum 2012.

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