When you invite your customers to create content with you, everyone gets smarter.

Customer Asks, You Engage

In Create Useful Content, Good Tools by lisavgray

Visit Brooklyn Museum (BKM), and enjoy a new and, for now, perhaps unique opportunity to ask anything about the works you see. Thanks to BKM’s ASK App, visitors can engage with a curator, via text, to ask anything. It’s a simple, magnificent, and groundbreaking experiment in meaningful engagement, made possible by a three-year grant from Bloomberg Connects. It’s also fantastic for the things it is NOT.

When you invite your customers to create content with you, everyone gets smarter.

CURATOR-DRIVEN – NOT

This is not an audio guide, scripted and voiced by museum staff. There are no preloaded images or labels. It’s a very simple text connection to a staff expert who can answer almost any question you have about a work. The visitor poses a question. Maybe includes a photo. And the engagement begins.

A SALES TOOL – NOT

There is no store with groovy swag on the app. No “Donate Now” button. Nothing for sale. Just a friendly answer to your goofiest or most incisive question.

A SECRET PROJECT – NOT

Brooklyn Museum and Bloomberg Connects have not envisioned ASK as a proprietary technology, meant to give BKM a competitive advantage over its peers. The code for the app is open source, available at GitHub. The BKM Tech Blog offers us all a front-row seat to the team’s goals, ideas, lessons, and dead-ends.

GET STARTED

You can do it too. Open a channel – even the smallest one – between your customers and your staff. Post the 10 most frequently asked questions of your staff or docents. Interact online with a style and vocabulary that are welcoming, helpful, trustworthy. Keep track of what you try + what you learn. When you invite your customers to create content with you, everyone gets smarter. And you may just engage a customer-for-life.