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Local Sponsorship Options for Small Businesses

with Emma Donovan

CEO of Studio Artes

Date: 24th March 2015

Sponsorship Generally:

When times are good businesses start to think about sponsoring local causes and looking at this as either another way of advertising or a way to improve their social responsibility.

Today we’re looking at local sponsorship. This is actually a really cost effective way of increasing local sales; cost effective because is often cheaper than “buying the right” to use something like the McGrath Foundation logo on your material. Local option is relatively inexpensive compared with the national charities and is more appealing in a community like Hornsby.

There are a few reasons why you might consider sponsoring a local cause as part of your business

  • You’re encouraged by someone in your family
  • You want to increase awareness of your business locally
  • You want to increase local sales
  • You want people in the local area to know you’re socially aware
  • You’re just trying to do something nice
  • You have a strong belief such as a political alignment and want to incorporate it into your business

Part 1 – Studio Artes & Emma introduction

We’re proud to have Emma Donovan, CEO of Studio Artes. Welcome to the show. Can we start by telling us a little bit about the history and purpose of Studio Artes. A lot of my regular, local listeners will be familiar with some of the work but couldn’t possibly fathom the huge amount of opportunities you provide your members and the Hornsby community.

Studio Artes’ core philosophies include: Respect, Inclusion and Equity. As you’ll hear from this interview all of those values are reflected not only in what they provide to their members and the local community but also in the way they engage with local businesses.

Emma (conversational)

  • History
    • Studio Artes was founded in 2000 in response to identified need in local Hornsby area. Somewhere for people with disabilities to go after finishing schooling where they could continue working on their arts skills.
    • Began with visual arts, grew to life-skills training, employment training & now the performing arts.
    • AND in the last couple of years we now offer developed the Studio Artist program (professional development professional, mainstream artists) and in doing so this program has broadened the opportunity for exhibitions both locally and all over the country & even internationally.
  • Studio Artes is not for profit, run by a board made up of community members, local business owners, educators, artists and founding members.
  • The team of 35 full and part time staff include teachers, (all the art team are practical artists including dancers & musicians), mentors, facilitators, finance & support staff, plus 25 volunteers across all of the fields we offere.
  • There are 140 members from as far as Central Coast to Southern Sydney. We have impact all over Sydney and beyond. The benefit is at the events we have friends, families, and extended community from all over Sydney supporting and acting as the audience to business sponsorship engagements.

What is the Studio Artes relationship with the business community at present

  • For businesses, as well as the exhibition sponsorship opportunities the centre also runs a variety of fundraising initiatives which the entire community is involved with
    • Ride a Day in my Wheels
    • Annual Ball for members and staff
    • Fundraising dinners – a really good networking opportunity
  • Businesses can partner with the centre to sponsor an exhibition or event
  • Items can be donated for fundraising & items which the members can use on a day to day level
  • Business requirements such as storage
  • Fee support program – actually the reason why Studio Artes was founded – equitable service provisions to those who otherwise would not have access to such services – partly paid for by businesses’ support.

Part 2 – Which businesses are you looking to align with?

  • There are direct financial sponsorship opportunities but also businesses can contribute with gifts in kind – Emma, can you describe these to us?
    • Storage from Guardian Funerals is a huge support where we can store large artworks, props from the ball, costumes
    • Bobby Holder from Techternatives offers hosting & all of Studio Artes’ IT support.
    • Businesses can be a principal sponsor for an exhibition – how many people attend a Wallarobba Centre event, for instance? Close to 300-400 people would attend the opening night. All the opening nights are well attended by the local community and often opened by a local personality like the Mayor of local State member.

Getting Value for Money & How to support Studio Artes

  • Our program is flexible so rather than being very specific options we work with the business so they are benefitting as much we are from the relationship.
  • Basically we’re open to suggestions
  • g. sponsoring an event such as an exhibition opening
    • Website recognition & link through to their website
    • Facebook ads which the business can use on their own site to publicise the fact that they are sponsors
    • Rights to use the Studio Artes logo
    • Access to images from the event to use on their website/blogs/newsletters
    • The business logo on printed collateral
    • Exclusive invitations (to invite clients, staff etc to the gathering)
    • Prominent display of their banner (depending on the level of sponsorship) or chance to address the gathering about the partnership
    • Verbal recognition in speeches at the event
    • Access to artwork for displays at corporate premises & recognition
  • Outside of the sponsorship we have a leasing program for Studio Artes artwork to exhibit in their premises with recognition of having done so.
  • Some businesses have a volunteer program for their staff where they attend the Studio Artes workshop for a day to really learn about all the programs we have to offer.

Part 3 – From a small business perspective, if I was considering this as a sponsorship option:

  • Is it a formal agreement which is signed by both parties so the business knows what they’re getting short and long term
    • Yes, Respect is one of our core vales so to ensure we are delivering on what is expected of us is important to us.
  • Basically you’ve mentioned you’re open to suggestions but in general; what level financially are we talking about?
    • Basically from about $1000 onwards. But remember gifts in kind are considered to have financial value and in fact, Studio Artes can offer a tax receipt for such services thereby making them tax deductible!
  • A lot of the time I see businesses supporting less established charities and their logo, for instance is not correctly displayed, the wrong phone number and these things are very important to a business, Do you have checks in place to make sure there is time for the business to sign off on these aspects before going to print.
    • Being a larger organisation we have the support staff to ensure those aspects are covered including a marketing coordinator.