Situation Analysis

Marshall Communications learned that Marsden Hartley’s Maine, a major exhibition of the paintings of Marsden Hartley, Maine’s foremost painter, would be presented by The Metropolitan Museum of Art at The Met Breuer in New York City from March 15 – June 18, 2017. After the run at The Met, the exhibit would be coming to Colby College Museum of Art in Maine. We reached out to The Met to inquire about ways our client, the Maine Office of Tourism (MOT), could leverage the exhibit. We presented the opportunity to MOT to serve as a lead sponsor for the high-profile opening event. The idea was that partnering with one of the world’s most highly-regarded art museums would raise awareness of Maine as a vibrant cultural destination.


The intent was to sponsor the opening event and carry forth a subsequent public relations and social media campaign that would underscore how the compelling landscapes of Maine that once inspired Hartley and other artists equally inspire today’s visitors to experience Maine. Through the sponsorship, MOT would be able to reach an important audience of potential visitors with an interest in art and cultural tourism.


Marsden Hartley's Maine thank you noteA press campaign was created and a highly targeted list of influential New York-based travel/art media was drawn up, with personal invitations extended to attend the opening. A press announcement was sent to our targeted media list, along with subsequent exhibit reminders. We created a social media campaign on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, using the Met and MOT’s handles and hashtags. We worked to create ways that would build more awareness and engagement for all visitors to Maine by developing a series of “Trip Ideas” based on the places in Maine that inspired Hartley. featured a map pinpointing the locations throughout the state that inspired Hartley, as well as information on museums and libraries that feature more of Hartley’s original work. Long after the exhibition, visitors can retrace the footsteps of Marsden Hartley.


  • Maine was recognized on approximately 300 printed invitations and 3,000 electronic invitations the went to The Met’s database
  • Direct acknowledgement on the Museum’s social media channels (@TheMet Twitter – 2.16 million followers; @ TheMet Instagram – 1.6 million followers)
  • Listing in the Museum’s Annual Report and in any printed listings of the Museum’s corporate contributors, including a full-page advertisement in The New York Times (circ. weekend edition: 2 million+).
  • We negotiated the following language with a hyperlink to would appear on the exhibition’s website at “For more information about visiting Maine and the sites that inspired Hartley’s work, go to”

PR and Social Media Results

132 pieces of coverage, 288+ million impressions, and 49.2K social shares from coverage. The Associated Press article alone, with link to and the “Trip Ideas,” had an ad value of $1.7 million. There were 4,345 unique pageviews on the Marsden Hartley’s Maine page on