Listening to Visitors: Research Findings on Mobile Content


Alyson Webb, Frankly, Green + Webb ltd, UK , Laura Mann, Frankly, Green + Webb USA, USA

Published paper: Listening to Visitors: Research Findings on Mobile Content

What kind of mobile content is most engaging for museum visitors? There is a body of recent literature on the opportunities and challenges of developing mobile interpretation for museum visitors (Samis 2007, Samis and Pau 2009, Petrie and Tallon 2010, Gangsei and Svenonius 2011) but surprisingly little research on mobile content itself.

At a moment when the technological barriers to offering a mobile guide are decreasing but the cost of content development remains high, we would be well-served by a thoughtful, evidence-driven look at mobile content. What resonates with visitors and what doesn’t? Do visitors expectations for mobile content differ between art museums, historic sites, and science museums? Where are we missing opportunities to connect with people?

This paper presents the results of mobile content research from a range of London cultural sites including the National Gallery, the Science Museum, and others.

Our paper will present key findings from the research and insights into patterns and trends that appear across the studies. Some of the findings confirm conventional wisdom while others suggest new approaches or unexpected priorities. But taken as a whole, the findings provide us with a set of operating principles for the development of successful mobile content.

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