Freelancer tag May 22nd, 2018Amy Firth
Experienced independent consultant and leader in culture and heritage, with in-house Board and Director-level experience at major UK organisations, including Tate, Natural History Museum, National Theatre, National Museums Scotland and Craft Scotland.
I am based near Edinburgh and work across the UK supporting all types of culture and heritage organisations, including visual and performing arts companies, national and regional museums and galleries, historic houses, membership bodies and sector development networks.
Particular strengths include strategy and team development; visioning and brand building; all aspects of marketing communications and visitor engagement; capital and revenue fundraising; culture change, governance and leadership development.
I have helped:
• a national theatre to review and develop its communications team and operations, create a digital strategy and recruit a director
• a London museum to review and develop its communications in advance of a major capital development
• a historic house & gardens to improve visitor engagement, and to develop its Board governance
• a multi-arts centre to build fundraising skills and capacity
• a leading contemporary gallery to develop its fundraising, marketing and branding, and to make an HLF application
• a membership organisation with strategy for profile, programming and funding
• a university, international festival and national orchestra to recruit senior posts
• a sector support agency to recruit a chief executive and multiple Board members
• the Director & Board of a sector development agency to review vision and strategy
• a theatre with creative ideas for daytime visiting and heritage interpretation
• a local authority to develop a marketing strategy and branding for a planned new museum
• Chairs and Trustees to review governance and support fundraising
You can find client testimonials by visiting my LinkedIn profile
I act as a coach and mentor to established and emerging leaders, and have developed group workshops around Personal Branding and ‘Career MOT’©. Speaking engagements include Edinburgh International Cultural Summit, ESRC and Arts & Business.
As a non-executive advisor I have supported creative industries, heritage, tourism, festivals and professional development bodies. I am the Chair of Craft Scotland and sit on the board of The Fruitmarket Gallery.
In London I worked on the launch of Tate Modern and the first Darwin Centre, and as External Relations Director for National Museums Scotland I led four talented teams covering marketing, digital, fundraising, and national & international strategy; across five sites and four capital projects we together achieved record visitor numbers and raised over £80m, plus six-figure annual revenue income.
I would be delighted to talk to you about how we might work together – please do get in touch for a chat.
Using experience gained from a range of arts and cultural organisations I can offer a number of services to support your project including:
Strategy planning and support – Social media coordination – Copywriting and content creation – Audience development
Please contact me to start a conversation about how we can work together.
I provide bespoke, evidence-driven interpersonal communications consultancy, appraisals, and training—
with the aim of improving organisational well-being.
Services include (but are not restricted to) text-analytic assessments of the psychometric properties of internal and external communications material; face-to-face appraisals of communicative style; tailored, strategic solutions to specific communications challenges; team dynamics reviews and strengths identification; and bespoke training in negotiation, persuasion, influence, compliance, conflict resolution, and staff well-being.
A seasoned freelancer of 11 years and Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, my consultancy work has attracted the following clients in recent years: Barbican, Battersea Arts Centre, Bristol Old Vic, Cause4, CREATE, Headlong, Hofesh Shechter Company, Kneehigh, Nuffield Theatre, Old Vic Theatre, Regents Park Open Air Theatre and Spektrix. I cover a range of areas including, but not limited to: campaign strategy and implementation, stakeholder engagement, branding, audience development, end-to-end project management (e.g. websites, membership), marketing and comms audits and copywriting.
From 2007-2011 I was Head of Communications at the Royal Court in London under the artistic directorship of Dominic Cooke, launching more than 80 new plays on an unsuspecting public. In addition, I also worked on the West End transfers of Clybourne Park, Jerusalem, ENRON, That Face and Rock n Roll.
Prior to this, I was a freelance marketing and press consultant for a diverse range of art forms including theatre, contemporary dance, comedy and music. My earlier roles include Marketing Account Manager at Ambassador Theatre Group in London and Account Manager at Feref Associates, a design agency.
I am also a professional coach, mentor and trainer.
As an avid believer in life-long learning, I undertake an ongoing programme of professional and personal development, focussing in particular on leadership and change management. Recent courses include: Effective Fundraising and Leadership in the Cultural Sector, Digital Skills for Fundraisers, Be A Trustee, Digital and Social media strategy, Small Business Big Results.
I am a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and a member of the Arts Marketing Association. I recently became a Trustee of Sister System, a charity which delivers a year-long mentoring and development programme for teenage girls from looked-after care.
‘I have worked with Kym for many years, through Headlong and Hofesh Shechter Company. She is an extraordinarily effective member of any team: tenacious, dynamic and clear-sighted. I would wholeheartedly recommend her.’
Henny Finch, Executive Producer, Donmar Warehouse
‘Kym joined Bristol Old Vic as Communications Director cover. She designed and delivered the campaign that gave us our highest profile and biggest box office yield to date, and was a great team leader and valued Senior Management strategist. She hit the ground at top speed and stayed there.’
Emma Stenning, outgoing Executive Director, Bristol Old Vic
‘ACT engaged Kym for six months because we believed there were more actor-parents we could reach who needed support. More? An understatement! Kym enabled the charity to double its grants to families and forged new and lasting contacts. She listened to our aims, grasped our values and developed a strategy for ACT that was far-reaching, while being focused and achievable. No jargon, no long meetings. Simply: results.’
Robert Ashby, Executive Director
I have achieved much over the last few years, and am now keen to support others in their endeavours, to help them reach their full potential.
If you are looking for someone to strategise, plan or implement marketing communications and audience development work, then please get in touch.
Here’s some areas I could help with:
– Branding/visual identity
– Strategy (marketing & audience development)
– Change management
– Communications & social media content integration
– Audience development / customer acquisition & retention
– Data analysis & insight
– Fundraising communications
I am results-oriented, and would love to talk to you about how to make your life easier and your marketing communications more effective. Although I’m based in East Kent, I love to see the world, and can travel.
For some of my blog posts and case studies, please check out my LinkedIn profile — link below.
The Experience Business will work with you to deliver more appealing, relevant and impactful audience experiences that return value back into the business in the forms of mission delivery, audience development and contributing to that all important bottom line.
I create dynamic environments that encourage you to think differently, generate ideas and explore possibility. The approach is human-centered, placing the audience at the heart of business practice through immersive Labs (1 to 5 days) that are facilitative, creative and engaging.
The Experience Business Toolbox is stuffed with proven methods to help you understand, conceive and design better services, exhibitions and programmes of work:
- Core Purpose Lab creates persuasive narratives that articulate the value you create for your audiences and communities. Clients include Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse, Creative Victoria and The City of Cape Town Department of Culture.
- Audience Experience Lab applies customer journey mapping to your customer experience in order to pin point where you are under-performing, supports the development of improvement programmes and explores the potential for new value creation. Clients include The Swiss Science Centre, Imperial War Museum North, Uppsala Stadsteater, Warwick Arts Centre, The Touring Network (Highlands and Islands) and Melbourne Arts Centre.
- Brand Experience Lab helps you translate your brand into vivid experiences that differentiate your offer, win hearts and minds and build brand trust. Clients include the National Football Museum and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.
- Innovation Lab unsticks your thinking in a co-creational environment to surface bold new concepts and open up fresh horizons of possibility. Clients include The Geffrye Museum of the Home, Royal Exchange Theatre Manchester and Goldfield Arts Centre, Western Australia.
- Design Thinking Labs hone these concepts into services, exhibitions and experiences that deliver mutual value for you and your audiences/stakeholders. Clients include Australia Council for the Arts, Arts Marketing Association and the Federation of Scottish Theatres.
- ‘Make-athons’ turn your staff teams from service deliverers into the creative producers of the audience experience, dissolving silos and building ownership. Clients include West Yorkshire Playhouse, Tullie House Museum Carlisle and Rockhampton Art Gallery Queensland (Australia).
- Training programmes are designed to upskill staff teams to better understand and shape audience experiences. Topics include Observational Research, Customer Journey Mapping, Design Thinking, Creative Thinking and Running Focus Groups. Clients include the AMA, Audiences Northern Ireland, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Warwick Arts Centre and The Wordsworth Trust.
I am also available to facilitate Board Away Days and Staff Development Days on the themes of Core Purpose, Design Thinking, Brand and Audience Experience.
Since launching The Experience Business in 2012, I have worked on some amazing projects with forward thinking organisations that have taken a leap of faith into a new way of working. Examples include:
– a ground-breaking Audience Engagement Programme, using design thinking to co-create audience-centric initiatives in remote and regional Australia, funded through Australia Council for the Arts.
– design thinking consultant on the AMA Future Proof Museums programme working with 8 museums on developing their visitor experience.
– Audience Experience Programme at the Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse, incorporating customer journey mapping and design thinking, which increased on-line booking revenue generation and led to a successful re-positioning of the fundraising strategy.
– development of a Visitor Experience Framework and Evaluation Toolkit for ON FIFE Cultural Trust.
– together with The Touring Network (Highlands and Islands), applying design thinking to develop alternative models of devising new work and audience engagement initiatives for rural touring, funded through the Paul Hamlyn Foundation.
– Visitor Experience Audit of the National Coalmining Museum which informed a successful £600k+ HLF bid to improve the visitor experience on site.
– working with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra to co-create a suite of three successful backstage tours. Demand now outstrips supply.
– professional development programme at Warwick Arts Centre designed to create an in-house team skilled in evaluating and improving the in-venue audience experience.
– Facilitator-in-residence at the City Recital Hall, Sydney, working intensively with staff for one week, applying customer journey mapping and experience design to re-imagine the in-venue experience.
Hannah has experience working with venues, composers, choirs, orchestras, musicians and music charities, leading creative marketing campaigns for numerous concerts outside of traditional spaces, including warehouses, pubs, clubs, museums, hospitals and prisons.
Specialising in social media, Hannah has managed the digital presence for many music organisations and artists including choral composer John Rutter. Her production credits include classical club nights and contemporary classical gigs in pubs for Nonclassical. Her alter ego is the Founder & CEO of London Flashmob, which sees her creating quirky pop-ups from wedding proposals to cultural pranks, including the London Undersound – a participatory audio adventure through the streets of Soho.
I’m a freelancer working across the UK with museums, libraries, galleries, theatres and heritage organisations.
With over eighteen years’ experience in the sector, I provide tactical and strategic support in:
– independent exploratory research and consultation
– marketing and communication
– audience development planning.
I’m also a qualified trainer and facilitator.
Previous clients include: National Trust, London Transport Museum, Manchester Art Gallery, More Music, Macclesfield Museums, Manchester International Festival, Rosehill Theatre, Royal Exchange Theatre, St Helens Libraries, Salford Libraries, Wirral Libraries, Leeds Libraries, Arts Council England, National Museums Liverpool plus many more.
Experienced in assessing potential in arts organisations, creative businesses, charities and museums.
We work with organisations keen to increase income, build organisational strategy, practical plans and the teams, Boards and culture to achieve strategic goals. We have over 20 years experience of assessing, transforming and the developing arts organisations, Museums and creative businesses.
All our work is tailored to your needs whether it is a complete strategic review or a part of that process. We think holistically and focus to make sure you get the input and outcomes you need to achieve your goals.
Louise Emerson has created value in the cultural sector in Museums, Arts Centres, Festivals and Creative companies; all with different cultures and personalities – some small and some large – and at very different stages in their development. She is experienced at looking at the whole organisation and has experience in fundraising and membership, as well as, a wide range of commercial mechanisms, negotiation with partners, managing change and developing culture.
Income Generation audits
Strategic reviews and plans
New business identification & development
Board Development and Governance
Increasing team engagement; enhancing performance
Louise Emerson is also a Coach and Mentor working with individuals transiting to higher level positions, keen to figure out how to deal with particular relationships, building team performance, advancing an organisation through change and development, reshaping your future or simply wanting to make the most of what you have
take the current also unlocks the full potential that is inherent in your team so that you retain and motivate the most valuable resource you have – your people. Coaching is a powerful and enduring way to get the best from individuals. A period of Coaching can build insight, confidence and creativity which is particular important for new structures, change, promotion or role change, culture change, testing times and individual development. Louise has coached in Museums, Pharmaceutical Industry, BBC, Hospitality industry, Artists, Theatres and Charities.
We offer numerous packages of help in arts organisations looking to refresh or update their core transactional systems. In addition to this we also work to assess and improve staff structures and efficiencies.
Whether you are just looking for independent advice to assess your current systems and processes, or need someone to lead or guide you through a procurement or replacement project, then we can certainly help, so do get in touch.
We work with arts and heritage organisations, trusts, local authorities and government agencies, and we advise theatres, concert halls, museums, galleries, dance companies and touring companies, helping them to innovate, change and flourish.