Peace yall. Today, I am answering the most common questions artists and business owners have asked me. Most of these questions came from the survey and some come from in-person consultations. My goal is to offer realistic solutions to common problems. Sometime this summer I'll have a live Q&A session so stay tuned.
Q: Are there any FREE business classes I can take to help with my business?
A: Yes! USE MY LINK to access FREE business classes from Verizon. They offer 40+ customized online courses, 200+ live and virtual events with handpicked mentors and peers, & $1M+ in grant funding.
Q: How do small businesses (startups) access funding?
A: There are lots of options. Here are some accelerators, incubators, & grants that can give you access to funding (more in the e-book).
A: Not sure what the exact question here lol. Sign up with my link for FREE Verizon Small Business Digital Readiness program to access free marketing classes. A couple local marketing firms I like are The Vision Group (marketing) and Grid Principles (branding). Both are Black woman owned.
Q: What is the best method for approaching venues?
A: Contracts are KEY! Be sure to read any agreement thoroughly and in some case present your own MOU (Memorandum Of Understanding) so both you and the venue are on the same page. Make sure it's the right venue for your event/program. I've hosted events at 1619 The Gathering Place, Brew & Sip, Roots 101, and Joe's Palm Room. All great experiences--but they were great because there was a solid agreement before we got started.
Q: There is a lack of outlets. How do we reach out to more?
A: Depends on which kind of outlet you're referring to. Brew & Sip has poetry on Wednesdays hosted by The Louisville Living Room. The Well has co-working space. House of Marigold is new and their aesthetic is amazing. The West End has some really nice venues. I think many of them are overlooked. Larger venues often have too high of a price tag. What makes the most sense (to me) is to work collaboratively to build spaces. Some initiatives are already happening and if we build up our own spaces together, we are more likely to succeed.
Q: Where can I find vendor events?
A: It depends on your city and the type of products you sell. Some cities have a really active chamber of commerce, so that's a good place to start your search. Churches and community organizations often host events as well. Play Cousins Collective and The Vision Group just launched "THE VILLAGE LOU" which has lots of events listed on their platform. I also love shopping with Melannaire Marketplace. The 365 Eats Initiative is another great way to get your business out there if you're a brick & mortar food business.
Q: What are some good curator fellowships?
A: While I am fairly new in my professional curator career, I have been excited about all the opportunities. I highly recommend HyperAllergic. They have a great VETTED list of fellowships & resources.
Q: How can we increase accountability for diversity offices and create more opportunities for grassroots orgs?
A: I think we need a robust grading/ranking system for these companies. There are several organizers working towards something like this. I have an arts-focused initiative (stay tuned on facebook).