The City of Port Phillip is a vibrant and creative inner-city council south of Melbourne’s CBD. It’s one of the most visited areas of Melbourne and is known for its creativity, inclusiveness, sustainability and enterprise.
The City delivers a busy cultural events calendar each year of over 100 programs, demonstrating its dedication to creating a thriving and dynamic environment for its residents, businesses and visitors. Famous major events produced by the City include St Kilda Festival and St Kilda Film Festival, in addition to presenting and supporting a vast array of third-party events within the Council area each year.
In 2022, City of Port Phillip sought to quantify and demonstrate the full breadth of economic activity generated across its busy events calendar, highlighting areas such as attendee expenditure, tourism-related spending and visitor behaviour insights to inform decisions on future investments and development. The City also sought to understand the cultural, social and qualitative outcomes generated by 11 nominated large-scale events and programs held throughout the year.
“The evaluation has presented data that has exceeded our expectations and allowed us to further evaluate items such as sentiment and sustainability, and also to identify where we may have demographic gaps in our event calendar.”
City of Port Phillip
To measure the impact of the City’s events to the local economy, Culture Counts recommended a bespoke Economic Impact Assessment package, with the following evaluation methodology:
- Strategic Alignment and Survey Development: A suite of surveys was developed for the City across a range of outcome areas identified in its Strategic Plan. Economic Impact questions were added into the survey templates so that the appropriate data would be captured at every event.
- Data Collection: Surveys were distributed online via the Culture Counts Evaluation Platform to ticket holders and registrees, with additional intercept interviews delivered on the ground by the City of Port Phillip’s team.
- Data Analysis: Customised analysis of evaluation and event-level data was carried out to understand spending stimulated by the City’s events and those organised by third-parties.
- Reporting: Event-level Economic Impact Assessment summaries were delivered throughout the year for the eleven nominated programs. An additional end-of-year Online Insights Report demonstrated results across a range of other identified areas, such as demographics, outcomes, patron experience, marketing, tourism and a further aggregated Economic Impact Assessment for the year.
City of Port Phillip reflects on the future benefits offered by an integrated evaluation approach in demonstrating the community and economic impacts of their annual programming:
“The data will assist us in evaluating our event applications, and particularly our annual expressions of interest process. It will help us identify strengths, weaknesses and gaps and also inform programming priorities for Council’s own internally produced events. It will ultimately ensure that the resulting events calendar can best meet the needs of our community in delivering cultural, social and economic benefit.”
City of Port Phillip
Key outcome achievements included:
- 90% of respondents agreed that the events they attended in the City of Port Phillip made them feel safe and welcome
- A large majority of respondents agreed that the events they attended were well produced and presented, reflected a broad and inclusive range of voices, and helped them feel part of the community – with ‘Presentation’ (87%), ‘Content’ (86%) and ‘Belonging’ (85%) recording highly positive results
- Audiences have a high level of loyalty towards events held in the City of Port Phillip (Net Promoter Score = 35)
- 74% of respondents living locally said that the event encouraged them to go out in the area rather than staying at home
- 64% of visitors to Melbourne/Victoria reported that the event they attended was the main reason for their travel to the area
- Across the 11 evaluated events, a direct expenditure impact of $16 million was delivered to the local economy
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