When we’re starting with new clients we get a lot of the same great questions. How many beacons will I need in my space? How do we create tours? Does the visitor pay to download our app? But almost always, museums express a concern that a mobile app isn’t for their visitors over the age of 60. We’re here to confirm that mobile apps can be for all of your visitors, regardless of age!
"Americans are embracing mobile technology at a rapid pace." -Pew Research Center
Let’s tackle the rumor of low smartphone ownership among this group. In an article by Pew Research Center from earlier in the summer, they reported that smartphone ownership among seniors has more than doubled since 2013, with no reason that it shouldn’t continue to do so as smartphone ownership in general continues to rise. In addition to smartphone ownership growth, tablet growth was also reported for people over the age of 60, by 20 points! At Encurate, we did visitor research in 2015 about the use of beacon powered mobile apps in two different institutions here in Chicago. Of the visitors surveyed over the age of 50, 82% owned a smartphone. The museum community often talks about smartphones, mobile apps, and millennial audiences, but offering a mobile app for your visitor will reach more than the 18-32 year olds!
Regardless of age, we know that visitors have varying areas of interest when they come to your museum. With the Encurate Content Management System, you can organize self-guided tours based on those specific interest areas. Some visitors want to take a deep dive into your content and search for all the details available. Some people want to skim through exhibitions for the highlights. No matter the level they’re interested in exploring, you can create a customizable experience for them on your app. While they explore your museum, beacons are going to let them know when something related to their interest area is nearby, no need to search for a number and punch it in!
Now when you're planning a mobile experience for your visitor, you can remain confident that you're not just engaging millennials, but creating an experience that all of your visitors will want to enjoy!