Rebuilding a Museum’s Operational Systems in Record Time
The Museum of Science, Boston is one of the premier science museums in the country. This beloved local institution engages nearly five million people per year in person and online. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the Museum began planning a digital transformation so that they could massively and rapidly expand their reach in the museum, classrooms, and online to 100 million people per year by 2030. But the arrival of the pandemic meant that they needed to accelerate that transition to continue engaging guests. So, they asked Velir to help replace their entire technical operational infrastructure in one year.
To accomplish their goal of massively increasing their reach, the Museum of Science, Boston needed a customer relationship manager (CRM). They were using Tessitura, a system focused on physical museum ticket sales, but they wanted a CRM to better support their digital mission. Since Tessitura handled their email marketing as well, they also needed to replace this system.
The Museum also needed new project management software, a new data warehouse stack for custom reporting, and major upgrades to their website that integrated ticket and membership sales, and email marketing with their new CRM.
Performing these updates would entail updating systems processes across multiple departments, including advancement, membership, visitor services, and marketing all at once. And while updates needed to happen quickly, speed had to be balanced with operational consistency to ensure integrity between all museum services during and after the transition between systems.
The Museum of Science, Boston’s challenges included:
- Replacing dozens of functions including advancement, membership, visitor services, and marketing systems all at once—while managing requirements from many stakeholders
- Getting buy-in from key leaders for the training and planning needed to execute these changes
- Maintaining operational integrity across in-person, over-the-phone, and online ticket sales, membership sales, and donations during the transition between systems
- Balancing speed with operational consistency to build the foundational systems for major digital transformation
To help the Museum determine the best CRM for them, we led an RFP process to assess the different combinations of systems that could meet their needs. After following this process and reviewing the options, the Museum selected Salesforce CRM’s non-profit success pack, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, and Ticketure to replace their operational systems.
Salesforce CRM provided the power and flexibility for the Museum to build their digital footprint. Salesforce Marketing Cloud pairs tightly with their CRM product, so it made sense to manage the Museum’s marketing and outreach capabilities. And Ticketure’s modern, web-based digital ticketing platform and its out-of-the-box integration with Salesforce were a natural fit with these tools.
We leveraged an agile team of Salesforce, Marketing Cloud, and ticketing experts to work with stakeholders from across the Museum to configure systems, migrate data, and plan and execute the launch of this new technical infrastructure.
Velir designed and built updates to the Museum’s existing website needed to re-integrate their ticketing and membership experiences with these new systems. Our Data Activation team built an entirely new data warehouse stack for the Museum using Snowflake, PowerBI, and dbt. We tested the new data infrastructure and helped their team roll it into production by creating data connections from the data warehouse to Salesforce, Ticketure, and other critical systems.
Our approach included:
- Running an RFP process to help The Museum assess different combinations of systems for their needs
- Designing and building updates to the Museum’s website to blend new ticketing and membership experiences into the Museum’s existing Drupal website
- Building an entirely new data warehouse stack, using Snowflake, PowerBI, and dbt
- Piloting the new data infrastructure and pushing it into production by creating data connections with Ticketure, Salesforce, and more
In just nine months, we overhauled the Museum’s operational systems to complete their digital transformation. We set up Salesforce CRM, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Ticketure, project management software, and an entirely new data infrastructure for them. We also designed and built the updates to their Drupal website to integrate it with these systems. Then we tested our integrations with the data warehouse we set up, helped train over 100 Salesforce users and 50 Ticketure users, and rolled out the new systems to ensure the Museum’s operational integrity. This set their staff on the path to increasing the Museum’s reach to 100 million people by 2030.
- A massive overhaul of operational systems that completed in just nine months
- 17 million rows of mapped and migrated data across 38 destination data types that were consolidated from dozens more sources
- Over 100 Salesforce users, and nearly 50 Ticketure users trained on web and point of sales interfaces in time for roll-out