Emotion and inspiration at the Van Gogh Museum: How emotion-based visitor research can create engaging brand experiences

Laurine van de Wiel
Van Gogh Museum
Saskia Brocx


Art museums today are more than ever challenged to create an engaging experience. To ensure their position and be financially independent, they need to stand out and exceed visitors' expectations. Audience research is one of the tools that museums use to achieve this. However, while there's an undeniable link between art experience and emotion, most research into museums ignores the importance of emotion in visitor satisfaction and loyalty.

This presentation is a case study of a successfully executed research study on human and brand related emotions in a worldwide renowned museum. TNS and the Van Gogh Museum have taken visitor research to the next level and took a deep-dive into the emotions and social values that drive the museum experience. Taking an approach that aimed to understand and manage emotion at every stage of the marketing process was a big step and a brave move for the Van Gogh Museum. In this presentation, we take you along on the journey that TNS and the Van Gogh Museum set about to find the key to creating an engaging museum brand experience.