About Us

We help cultural executives develop business and audience engagement strategies based on high-confidence, actionable data.

What We Do

With research from the largest ongoing survey of perceptions and behaviors surrounding cultural organizations in the U.S. and data from 224 cultural organizations, IMPACTS Experience removes the guesswork and uncertainty involved in successfully engaging audiences.

Executives and board members today face new behavioral trends and shifting demographics. Our high-confidence research helps leaders take action to create sustainable business strategies that lead to increased attendance, support, and mission execution, and ensure long-term solvency.

About IMPACTS Experience

IMPACTS Experience is a branch of IMPACTS Research & Development, a private company delivering actionable, real-time intelligence to clients in the government, nonprofit, entertainment, and a number of enterprise sectors.

IMPACTS provides awareness and usage studies, revenue optimization models, virtual prototyping, and expert consultancy to inform developmental, economic, marketing, and policy strategies. Our primary expertise is developing intelligence to predict discretionary consumer behaviors – the kind of information that helps organizations understand not only what their constituents are doing, but also why they are doing it. Current and recent clients utilizing IMPACTS technologies include projects concerning the European Union, Google, Facebook, Monterey Bay Aquarium, The Re-Election Campaign of President Barack Obama, Stanford University, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), U.S. Department of State, Warner Brothers Entertainment, and the Wildlife Conservation Society.

The venture that would become IMPACTS Experience originally grew out of IMPACTS’s work with cultural organizations and the public recognition of a website created by the company’s Chief Market Engagement Officer, Colleen Dilenschneider. Know Your Own Bone began making non-proprietary research accessible to cultural executives in 2011, and soon gained a wide following within the field. Today, Know Your Own Bone is frequently cited as a primary resource within the cultural industry, with a lengthy subscriber list of cultural executives and board members from leading entities.

With the aim of making market research even more accessible and applicable to individual institutions, IMPACTS Research & Development began offering workshops and data-driven discussions for cultural organizations in 2018 and formally established IMPACTS Experience as a separate arm of the company in 2019. IMPACTS Experience currently offers keynotes, lectures, and full-day, half-day, and board workshops featuring 95%+ confidence-level market research on behavioral and perceptual trends impacting cultural organizations.

Meet the Team

IMPACTS Research & Development is 85 people strong – with mathematicians and research professionals based out of major universities. These professionals provide data analysis and support for the IMPACTS Experience team.

Colleen Dilenschneider

Chief Marketing Engagement Officer

Widely regarded as a leader of the next generation of nonprofit executive management, Colleen oversees multiple audience engagement initiatives on behalf of clients in the nonprofit and cultural sectors. Colleen uses data to both identify and predict emerging market opportunities, and helps nonprofit organizations maintain their relevance and secure their long-term financial futures by building affinity with their onsite and virtual audiences.

Colleen has worked with many of the most admired and successful clients in the nonprofit realm, including projects concerning the Monterey Bay Aquarium, California Academy of Sciences, Carnegie Museums, Stanford University, Exploratorium, John G. Shedd Aquarium, Tennessee Aquarium, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), San Diego Zoo, and Wildlife Conservation Society. Colleen currently serves on the Board of Directors at the National Aquarium.

Colleen is the author and publisher of the popular website Know Your Own Bone, a data-informed, strategic resource for cultural organizations, and has been a featured expert in sources ranging from NPR’s Marketplace to The Wall Street Journal. She has been prominently featured in many national museum publications and as required reading for museum studies and professional development programs nationwide.

Jim Hekkers

Chief Strategy Officer

Jim Hekkers specializes in leveraging his extensive executive experience in the world of visitor-serving organizations to help leadership at nonprofit organizations improve strategic planning, management, and market research. Hekkers served as the managing director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium from 2001 to 2015, where he oversaw the senior management team, day-to-day operations, and all strategic and exhibition planning. He simultaneously served on the boards of the National Steinbeck Center, the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the Pacific Grove Museum Association. Hekkers has also served as the president and chief executive officer of the Colorado’s Ocean Journey aquarium in Denver and the marketing director for the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga. His expertise with and fascination for robust market research help him facilitate strategic plans for IMPACTS’ clients by leveraging credible data-driven insights into charting more data-informed futures.

With a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Colorado State University and a master’s of nonprofit management degree from Regis University, Hekkers taught collaboration, leadership, and planning classes at California State University Monterey Bay for many years. A popular speaker, he has presented at dozens of zoo, aquarium, and museum conferences in the United States and abroad, and he has published more than 20 major articles, book chapters, and professional papers to date.

Bethany Corriveau Gotschall

Project Coordinator

Bethany Corriveau Gotschall provides administrative support for Know Your Own Bone and IMPACTS Experience. A creative yet practical thinker, Bethany’s focus as a museum professional is on developing innovative, engaging, and welcoming museum experiences informed by data and market research. Bethany has experience in museum education, interpretation, and public programs, formerly serving as Audience Engagement Specialist at the Cleveland Museum of Art where she oversaw the museum’s programming for adult audiences, contributed to content development for the ArtLens mobile app, and served on the interpretation team for CMA’s interactive technology space ArtLens Gallery.

She has presented on public programs and interpretation at several conferences and events, including MuseumNext, American Alliance of Museums Annual Meeting, Museums and the Web, and the Ohio Museums Association. Bethany has a bachelor’s degree in art history from Albion College and a master’s degree in art history and museum studies from Case Western Reserve University.

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