Between September 2019 and March 2020 The Audience Agency and Counting What Counts will run a trial with a small number of NPOs to test the integration of the Audience Finder and Impact & Insight Toolkit systems.

We have identified suitable NPOs to take part in the trial based on our knowledge of their data collection processes, prioritising organisations that are part of the Impact & Insight Toolkit Strategic Development Strand and seeking a mix of artforms and geographic spread.

During the trial four or five NPOs will experiment with using Audience Finder to collect Impact & Insight Toolkit public data. These organisations will select up to four productions, exhibitions or projects that they would like to evaluate using the Impact & Insight Toolkit. The Audience Agency will add the core Impact & Insight Toolkit questions to the organisation’s Audience Finder survey, to be completed by audience members that have attended the events in question. The resulting data will be downloaded for Counting What Counts to clean and manually entered into the Impact & Insight Toolkit

We will also support a further four or five NPOs to collect Audience Finder data using the Impact & Insight Toolkit. Counting What Counts will help these organisations to set up four evaluations in the Impact & Insight Toolkit that combine Audience Finder and Impact & Insight Toolkit questions. Counting What Counts will create an additional survey containing the core Audience Finder questions only, for organisations to use across the remainder of their programme. Counting What Counts will export all the Audience Finder data collected by the organisation for The Audience Agency to clean and upload.

The Audience Agency, Counting What Counts and the participating NPOs will monitor the processes, experiences and outcomes of integrating the systems in the two ways described above. This will allow us to evaluate the benefits of the two integration options to NPOs, in terms of ease, efficiency and the value of the data collected.

Further, we will recruit a control group of approximately ten NPOs and ask for feedback on their experiences of running Audience Finder and the Impact & Insight Toolkit separately. This will enable us to judge the benefits and costs of integration compared with separate use of the platforms. Organisations in the control group will either use the two systems at different productions, exhibitions or projects, or they will use the two systems at the same production, exhibition or project and split the audience so that half receive the Audience Finder survey and half the Impact & Insight Toolkit survey. These two options for running Audience Finder and the Impact & Insight Toolkit separately are described in more detail in Working with Audience Finder and the Impact & Insight Toolkit: Guidance for NPOs.

We will produce a report on the trial in March 2020, with an interim review point and early findings and recommendations to the Arts Council in 2019.