Massive On-Line Library of Arts Marketing Resources

libraryYou’ll never have to start “from scratch” again.

Have you heard of the massive on-line library that collects, evaluates, catalogs and shares high-quality/non-proprietary work samples among nonprofit arts & cultural organizations?

Recognizing that 1) so many of the administrative, marketing and fundraising staff of arts & cultural organizations arrive at their positions from OUTSIDE the sector and without any specific arts & culture-oriented training, and 2) that arts & cultural organizations in so many communities face similar challenges, the establishment of a curated on-line library provides a powerful resource to learn from, emulate and build upon the experiences & accomplishments of others.

Among the library’s searchable (i.e. budget, size, genre, situation and more) resources:

  • Marketing Plans
  • Audience Surveys
  • Direct Mail & Advertising Campaigns
  • Grant Proposals
  • Strategic Plans
  • Research & Position Papers
  • Press Releases
  • Videos, Powerpoints and Scripts of Presentations to City Councils/Municipalities
  • Annual Reports
  • Staff and Board Training Materials

Why haven’t you heard of it?

Because it doesn’t exist.  Yet.

But it could.  DO YOU THINK IT SHOULD!?!

If you’re interested in helping make this happen – drop me a note:

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  1. says

    Matt, I worked for a leading figure in the field of cultural advocacy – Luisa Kreisberg. Arts/cultural organizations would always ask for pro-bono assistance. Ever the diplomat, she would always turn down these requests (FYI – non-arts non-profits would regularly benefit from pro-bono work from Luisa and the firm). Her reasoning: “Cultural PR & advocacy is the firm’s stock-in-trade and the method by which we earn a living. I don’t give those services away”. I too still believe in the nature of the ‘secret sauce.” Part of my firm’s philanthropic platform is devoted to assisting organizations outside of my ‘stock-in-trade’ activity – but I do reduce fees for those non-profit cultural clients. I have even served on cultural boards. But each time, I have retained the control of my methods, instruments and contacts. Again, that’s how I make a living. Thoughts?

    • says

      Thanks for your message, Peter. Some thoughts…

      1) Allow the idea of such a library to exist separate from the question of how it gets paid for. Our initial discussions should focus on the FUNCTION that would be most valuable to the field. Only when that value is abundantly clear does it make sense to address the possible FORM of such a service. (By form, I mean whether there is sufficient demand/value to enable it to exist as a pay-to-play service – or whether it deserves/engenders contributed revenue support.)

      2) Does having such a library take away the earnings potential of consultants & service providers? Not any more than the availability of so many “How to” books and on-line templates. The blessing (and curse) of the Internet age is the availability of nearly infinite resources to inform & educate people pursuing whatever are their objectives. Such an online library can provide great examples and fuel great ambitions – but I doubt that it could ever replace the value of a skilled & experienced service provider.

      But at the same time, let’s recognize that there is MUCH information that can AND SHOULD be shared among organizations. The arts & cultural sector as a whole is held back if we don’t BUILD upon eachother’s experiences and accomplishments.

      3) Please note that I specifically included “non-proprietary” in the description of the information to be shared. That is a vitally important point! I certainly respect that organizations and their service providers should be able to retain the rights to works of their own creation.


      • says

        Hi Matt
        Good to see you blog! Congrats.
        Check out which is the recently launched , fresh out the packet site managed and promoted by my colleagues in the Art Marketing association UK and the Audience Agency ( London and Manchester). From distant memory, (yikes I’m getting old) it looks a little in principle like a fabulous resource called ‘fuel for arts’ that was instigated in Australia in 2003/5 but stopped through lack of funding.

        On culture hive we have contributed some resources from our hugely successful digital development project All have been supported in some ways by funds from government, directly or indirectly, with the aim of building the resiliance and self sustainability of arts oganisations and professionals. The lesson from digital is open access, open data and open source. I take Peter’s point about revenue earning. What we find is that by increasing access ( and the questions and conversations this stimulates) we increase demand for services to help organisation take action…