An evaluation framework for success: capture and measure your social media strategy using the Balanced Scorecard

Elena Villaespesa, Tate, UK

Published paper: An evaluation framework for success: Capture and measure your social-media strategy using the Balanced Scorecard

Despite the vast amount of data at their disposal, museums struggle to measure the impact and value of their social-media activities due to the lack of standard metrics, consistent tools, and clear guidelines from funders. This paper attempts to define a performance measurement framework that may help museums define the set of measures and tools required to carry out this evaluation task. The evaluation tool proposed is an adaptation of the Balanced Scorecard, a framework developed by Robert Kaplan and David Norton and presented in the Harvard Business Review in 1992. As the authors define it, the Balanced Scorecard "translates an organization’s mission and strategy into a comprehensive set of performance measures that provides the framework for a strategic measurement and management system." The framework was used at Tate in order to study its applicability. During this process, the Balanced Scorecard was demonstrated to be an efficient method for gathering strategic information and defining performance measures.

The next step was to put the framework into action, assess its usefulness, and analyse the insights and challenges that stem from applying it. This fieldwork was a practice of trial and error to test various methods and tools for collecting, analysing, and visualising the data with the aim of measuring the interaction and conversation created on these social media platforms. Based on a series of case studies evaluating the social media activities at Tate, this research evaluated which are the best metrics to use in the framework and how the data can be presented and turned into visualisations and actionable pieces of information that inform the decision-making process. This paper also reflects on the implications for museums of establishing a performance measurement system in terms of processes, organisation structure, and resources.

Egloff, C., and Zorloni, A., ‘Art & Business: Measuring a Museum’s Performance’, Boston Consulting Group perspectives, <> [Accessed 16 September 2014].
Falk, J.H., and Sheppard, B., Thriving in the Knowledge Age: New Business Models for Museums and Other Cultural Institutions, (Lanham, MD: Altamira Press, 2006).
Kaplan, R.S, ‘Strategic Performance Measurement and Management in Nonprofit Organizations’, Nonprofit Management and Leadership, 11 (2001).
Kaplan, R.S., and Norton, D.P, Strategy Maps: Converting Intangible Assets into Tangible Outcomes, (Boston: Harvard Business School Press, 2004).
Kaplan, R.S., and Norton, D.P., ‘The Balanced Scorecard - Measures that Drive Performance’, Harvard Business Review (1992), pp. 71-79.
Kaplan, R.S., and Norton, D.P., The Balanced Scorecard: Translating Strategy into Action (Boston, Mass: Harvard Business School Press, 1996).
Stack, J., ‘Tate Digital Strategy 2013-2015: Digital as a dimension of everything’, Tate Papers, 19 (2013) <> [Accessed 30 September 2014].
Fox,H., Beyond the Bottom Line: Evaluating Art Museums with the Balanced Scorecard, (Los Angeles: Getty Leadership Institute, 2006).
Zorloni, A., ‘Designing a Strategic Framework to Assess Museum Activities’, International Journal of Arts Management, 14.2 (2012), pp.31-47.