Tracksuit

Case study: how English National Ballet uses Tracksuit to take centre stage

May 13th, 2024

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Francesca Nicasio
Minju Kang as Carmen, James Streeter as Zuniga and English National Ballet dancers in Johan Inger's Carmen © Laurent Liotardo_scr

We spoke with Director of Marketing & Communications of English National Ballet, Lisa Leigh to find out how she uses Tracksuit data to understand which area of the marketing funnel to focus on.

  • English National Ballet knows that if it wants to hone in on its mission to share world-class ballet with the widest possible audience, they need to understand market trends, audience perceptions, and how they stack up against competitors.
  • Tracksuit has been instrumental in offering continuous insights that guide marketing strategies and decisions.
  • "It's been super helpful for us to understand our brand funnel, especially in comparison to other similar brands," explains Lisa.

We live in a world where art and culture evolve so rapidly that only the best and most engaging brands can thrive. English National Ballet (ENB) is one such brand, which is why we're so excited to showcase its story today 🙌

As one of the top ballet companies in the world, ENB showcases exceptional performances and experiences to audiences in and outside of Great Britain.

According to Lisa Leigh, Director of Marketing & Communications at English National Ballet, the company has one mission: to share world-class ballet with the widest possible audience.

ENB does this in several ways, including live performances, digital products, and learning initiatives — all designed to cultivate emotional connections with its audience. Beyond that, the company strives to blend its classical heritage with modern artistic expressions.

"We stand for artistic excellence and creativity. We are quite an interesting mix because we celebrate tradition as well as forge innovation. Across everything we do, we aim to invite people in. ENB is a welcoming, inclusive organisation that's easy to share," Lisa says.

Image credit: English National Ballet dancers in Giselle © Laurent Liotardo

The importance of brand tracking 🔍📊

When your brand's goal is to maximise visibility and reach to the widest audience possible, it can be tricky to figure out where to start. Which part of the market should you go after? What messaging should you put out there? Which stage of the funnel should you focus on?

English National Ballet knew that if it wanted to hone in on its mission, it needed to understand market trends, audience perceptions, and how ENB stacks up against other cultural organisations.

It's worth noting that ENB already uses a number of tools to track audience engagement and perceptions. These include sending NPS surveys and regularly measuring the performance of individual productions and programmes.

However, ENB didn't initially have a tool for tracking overall brand performance on an ongoing basis.

This is where Tracksuit comes in. Lisa says Tracksuit has been instrumental in offering continuous insights that guide the ENB's marketing strategies and decisions.

In 2024 so far, ENB has seen particularly impressive growth in consideration of 5% in their target age range. This is a modest time frame to make such gains! In real human terms, that’s 1.3 million more who would consider purchasing tickets for an ENB performance.

Similarly, we can see that awareness is on the rise, with an additional 1.3 million people who are now aware of the brand.


"One of our key mid- to long-term priorities is to grow our brand affinity over and above individual performances or projects. Tracksuit supports us along the way because it helps us understand where we are now, where we'd like to go, and the steps we're making towards that ambition."

She adds, "Tracksuit stands out because it gives us access to this type of data on a monthly rolling basis rather than just pulling it one point in the year."

Understanding competitive and funnel performance 🌪️⚖️

Lisa shares that Tracksuit's always-on brand insights have helped ENB teams grasp how the market views the company relative to other organisations.

"With Tracksuit, we've been able to understand the differences with other organisations at the moment as well as the similarities. And both of those points have been very helpful because they've allowed us to bring the outside perspective into our thinking," she says.

ENB also uses Tracksuit to inform its marketing decisions. Case in point: the team recently decided to focus their efforts on the middle of the funnel after analysing brand data from Tracksuit.

"It's been super helpful for us to understand our brand funnel, especially in comparison to other similar brands," explains Lisa.

"We compared our performance through the funnel against our competitors, and we were able to see that we needed to do better in the 'consideration' stage of the funnel. We were actually doing really well in other areas, so this is where we could drive the biggest change."

Current and future initiatives 🩰

Being such a dynamic organisation, there's never a dull moment at English National Ballet. Recently, the company staged two super interesting (yet completely different) productions: a contemporary take on the classic story Carmen and a ballet made especially for children called My First Ballet: Swan Lake.

According to Lisa, these productions were some of her favourite marketing moments of the year because they showcased the breadth and versatility of ENB, allowing the brand to connect with vastly different audiences simultaneously.

"It's been wonderful to see such varied audiences engaging with and being moved by our work," she says. "And it's been an interesting challenge for our marketing and comms teams. We've had to move between two very different target audiences and shape the campaigns and communications to connect with those audiences at the same time."

Image credit: Minju Kang as Carmen, James Streeter as Zuniga and English National Ballet dancers in Johan Inger's Carmen © Laurent Liotardo

What's next for the English National Ballet? Lisa says the team is gearing up for the company's new brand identity project, which doubles down on ENB's mission of expanding its reach and deepening its engagement with audiences across the globe. We're eager to see the results of this reflected in the Tracksuit dashboard.

Beyond that, Lisa says to look out for their upcoming performances of Swan Lake in-the-round:

"Keep an eye out for our spectacular performances of Swan Lake at the Royal Albert Hall this summer. It's a chance to experience one of the world’s most famous ballets with a 360° view - it really is breathtaking ballet on a grand scale!."

Thanks so much for chatting with us Lisa. We'll look forward to reporting on the success of the brand refresh later in the year. You can check out ENB on Instagram and their website.

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