Last spring and summer in two meetings, Grand Rapids Community Foundation gathered local arts leaders to discuss their needs and issues surrounding short-term growth and sustainability in light of the economic downturn. The consensus of the leaders was that a marketing effort could help build interest, attendance and membership. The arts leaders helped describe audiences and possible messaging. There was clear support from the arts leaders for a collective effort to continue to position Grand Rapids as an arts-centric community.
With the Arts Council of Greater Grand Rapids as a conduit to bring diverse organizations together, public relations firm Lambert Edwards & Associates and design firm Plenty Creative were selected to bring the effort into reality. The focal point of the effort will be new website WhatsYourArtGR which will be an arts portal for more than 60 diverse arts and cultural organization in Kent County. The site, when completed in mid-January 2010 will be highly interactive, featuring pages for each of the arts organizations, a calendar of events, links to purchase tickets, video and audio components and social media connections.
A collateral campaign featuring an art sampler special event, impromptu events, social media, e newsletters and some advertising will drive traffic to the website.
The website falls under the management of the Arts Council and will help better position the organization as a go-to resource for arts organization.