Museums debut brand partnerships to lure Gen Z
The Future. Like any business, art museums are turning to brand partnerships as a way to create new revenue streams and lure younger patrons to their exhibits. The gambit is already working, which may show that even the most bourgeois of cultural destinations are not immune to the opportunities of crossover marketing.
A little new, a lot of old
Museums are betting that partnerships with popular brands will shake out the cobwebs as the pandemic wanes.
- Fashion. The Met collaborated with Estée Lauder on a makeup line inspired by artwork. The Louvre collabed with Virgil Abloh’s Off-White on tee’s and hoodies. And MoMA teamed up with Vans on footwear inspired by artists like Monet and Dalí.
- Streaming services. The Brooklyn Museum partnered with Netflix on a virtual exhibition of pieces from The Crown and The Queen’s Gambit that were shown alongside items related to the show’s setting or characters.
- Social platforms. Uffizi Gallery — one of the most popular destinations in Florence, Italy — saw its Gen Z attendance double once it started to use TikTok.
- Snacks. Most deliciously, the Palace Museum in Beijing partnered with Oreo on a limited edition cookie. The museum made $222 million through product sales alone in 2018.
Last year, visitor numbers to the top 100 art museums dropped by 77%, and now museums seem to be dusting off every trick in the book to get people back.