William "B.J." Warren Fellows Project- Millikin University

Go down

William "B.J." Warren Fellows Project- Millikin University

Post  Admin on Mon Dec 10, 2012 1:18 pm

William "B.J." Warren Fellows Project- Millikin University
Arts Business Accelerator

While students are able to learn about and start their own ventures, they lack the ability to grow sales beyond their close friends, family, and their connections. To provide an experiential learning opportunity for students to practice growth, an arts business accelerator will be established in a public venue. Students will be exposed to the local community, promoting and selling their work to an external (unknown) audience.

Utilizing an already established art gallery in a downtown retail setting, students were charged with selecting the artists/startup businesses that they would represent in the gallery for the semester based on the local market needs. They then developed strategies for increasing the sales of those individuals. While the intended outcome was for students to select their own businesses to grow, many chose work produced by their friends or outside individuals. Only one team chose to grow the t-shirt design business they had started.

Throughout the semester, they designed advertisements, wrote press releases, hung shows, and developed an identity for the retail store. However, their ability to grow the ventures failed. While some work (buttons and t-shirts in particular) increased sales over previous years, the overall demand was extremely low and fine art became a more popular seller (although sales in the same location were historically declining for fine art).

- Leveraging Resources: having a limited budget to work with, students were forced to use supplies on hand, expand their social media presence, and develop relationships with local media outlets for free publicity
- Innovation: expanding the current offerings of the gallery, their new products were meant to provide value that did not already exist in the local market (i.e. products different than those at other downtown retail establishments)
- Building and Managing Social Networks: necessary to raise awareness of their new product lines and also increase foot traffic, this competency was learned from failure to actually execute (they didn’t do it!)
- Tenacity/Perseverance: Although sales were poor at the start of the semester, the students continued to find new ways to increase awareness and sales. They took on new promotional projects, special events, and extended store hours.

- Having students take the risk of exposing their own work to the public
- Convincing students that non-commercial artwork has a viable market (i.e. you can sell your paintings and don’t have to sell only commercial products like t-shirts)
- Getting students engaged in and interacting with the local community when they “are here only for school and don’t plan to stay.”


Posts : 8
Join date : 2012-11-12

View user profile http://fadcolemanfellows.board-directory.net

Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum