RIVERVIEWS ARTSPACE PROPOSAL
-Riverviews is paying more than $20,000 per year in fees to the condo association for currently vacant units (since some of these units have been vacant for more than a year, the total losses may amount to somewhere between $50,000 and $70,000). With no tenants in these spaces, that money is a total loss, not an investment. Getting tenants into the spaces, even if they can pay only half of market rates, would be a vast improvement. Riverviews would recoup its costs and have the benefit of tenants who would bring new life to the building and help fulfill Riverviews' mission.
- At just a 2x model, Riverviews could make $20,000 in profit each year from these currently empty spaces. Not too mention the boon to other businesses and events (such as the Gallery) from the increased foot traffic.
We are looking at an initial timeline of this new Riverviews Artspace campaign as a year-long relationship between Foster & Asher and RVAS. That being said, our overall objective will be to fill as many of the vacant spaces as possible (focusing on S1, 207 and 201 as our Flagship spaces). We will accomplish this by helping to identify potential candidates, using marketing materials (photo, video, web, print) to promote and drive business to our new spaces.
Below are the available spaces and our ideas.
Startup Date: Immediately
Use: Congruence Yoga/Om Yoga
Unit Cost: $500
Suggested $500 a month for a year. Then 1.5x at the year mark.
Sq. Ft. : 1200
Startup Date: 1 month
Use: Recording/Practice studio (also small concerts)
Manager: Nathan McGlothlin
Monthly Unit Cost: $290
Suggestions: Unit will generate small incomes from artists using the space to record, practice and hold small concerts. Suggest that RVAS does a profit share of space (or allows at cost rental for first 6 months).
Sq. Ft. : 691
Suggested Use: The Steeping Leaf
Manager: Cameo Hoyle
Monthly Unit Cost: $480
Sq. Ft. : 1155
Monthly Unit Cost: $170
Sq. Ft. : 390
Monthly Cost: $340
Sq. Ft. : 803
Monthly Cost: $240
Sq. Ft. : 566
Monthly Cost: $120
Sq. Ft. : 269
One top priority is identification of candidates for the available units that align with the Riverviews mission to create a culture that is a "vital, unique destination for residents and tourists" in VA and the surrounding areas. We need people in these units that will bring life and revenue to the building.
We have already spoken to some amazing candidates for these spaces (as can also be seen above):
Unit 207 would be occupied by Vihara Yoga studio (Yogi's Carlina Muglia and Cyndi Lee would run the studio). They are ready to move in immediately once terms are agreed to. Both teachers have a steady amount of students and look to double their class sizes once they can relocate to a new, larger space. The profit margins can be high in successful yoga studios as overhead is virtually non-existent and utilities are very low. There is also a very active and health conscious community downtown near the Blackwater that would serve as a constant flow of people who are a target demographic for this studio. Carlina is also a member of Toolry and very much a part of the Riverviews community already, so having a tenant who understands the needs of RVAS is a huge plus.
Unit S1 would be the new Tea/Coffee shop The Steeping Leaf (Run by Lyndsay and Cameo Hoyle). They are ready to start building out immediately with about a one month launch date. They wish to provide coffee, tea, baked goods and small breakfast/lunch items. This would be of great benefit to the surrounding area as there is an influx of new residents. This would also greatly serve the people and businesses within Riverviews Artspace who suffer from a lack of proximally close food options. This is a no-brainer business plan. Cameo Hoyle is the Director of the James River Arts Council (one of RVAS tenants) and is very excited/dedicated to helping make this building and her business a destination for people in downtown Lynchburg for the arts and healthy/positive community.
Unit 201 is a great space for what we would consider a recording studio/practice space. The long term idea for this unit would be to monetize it by renting out the space to bands for practice, instrument lessons for children, and recording. Nathan McGlothlin is an experienced studio producer and manager and has agreed to spearhead this space in helping us find the right people to bring it to life. He has also agreed to bring in all of his own equipment and to sound-proof the room so there are no noise issues for any of the other residents.
So, what type of content are we creating, and why?
We believe it's important to tell the story of RVAS through the lives of the people who make it so special. Our photographic and video efforts will be targeted at working with the artists and businesses of RVAS to create marketing materials to show Lynchburg and surrounding areas what we are all about. We see this content as being the natural byproduct of a healthy community of co-habitants who want to be a part of making Lynchburg a magnet for artists and supporters of the arts. In a way, RVAS could become the artistic standard in Lynchburg and we want to attract the best businesses and artists into our community so the longevity (both financially and communally) of RVAS is secure.
WHERE WILL THIS CONTENT BE FEATURED/HOW WILL IT BE USED?
-blog posts on the RVAS website
-short narrative film vignettes on the various artists/businesses in RVAS
-Instgram posts using the #RIVERVIEWSARTSPACE
-Facebook posts sharing behind the scenes snippets and keeping people up to date with the latests events
-Large printed photos hung throughout Riverviews of the actual artists and businesses within. Imagine walking into the front lobby and seeing beautiful images of this building filled up with people doing what they love. The building sells itself, we just need to show people that.
-Printed pamphlets and other local advertisements will use consistent image branding
-Riverviews.net image and branding refresh.
-Sizzler videos of events that can be used to advertise future events
So, how does this work?
Our timeline for the annual budget RVAS has allotted would be that F&A is on retainer for 1 year with RVAS to implement all action points for this campaign.
Initially this partnership between RVAS and Foster & Asher was seen as a payment for services relationship. Which it is. But it could also be a few more things that would greatly benefit the space and help expedite many of the changes the RVAS wishes to see implemented.
Currently, our understanding is that the marketing budget for next year is 10k. We estimate that it will take around 30-40 hours per week of work (initially) to market both RVAS and the new businesses that will be occupying the space. At that many hours, stretched out over a year, the budget would need to be considerably higher (nearly triple) to account for that type of work. But we have an interesting proposal.
Seeing as how hands on we will need to be to truly capture and share the story of RVAS with our community (as it grows) we thought of a trade of services and the creation of Foster & Asher as an in-house creative consultant for RVAS would be a pretty cool option.
We suggest a monthly retainer payment of $1,400 in exchange for services rendered by F & A. That would bring the overall total cost annually to 16,800. If this amount cannot be met, then the original amount of 10k will be a second option. Deliverables will be reduced and determined.
Foster and Asher also would review possible improvements in the building to make it more appealing to potential tenants:
--Evaluation and improvements of signs and lighting.
--Addition of marketing materials in appropriate places in the building.
What's the Timeline?
Over a 12 month period, we will be creating photo, video and written content that will adapt to the needs of the businesses and events that RVAS wishes to promote. Essentially, we will be delivering 1 video every 2 months and hundreds of marketable photos per month along with marketing consultation and social networking management to control the ebb and flow of our content.
We are open to a shorter term arrangement (however we believe a year is the best option to see this plan through to its fullness). 3 months is the shortest term arrangement and an up-front payment of $2,000 plus a monthly amount of $1,000 or $1,400 (depending the amount of deliverables decided upon) will be required.
It's also important to remember that despite our best predictions, the needs of RVAS will change with time, so we need to always keep a mindset of being adaptable to the needs of our community and our patrons. This might mean an evolving of social marketing strategies, new form of content creation etc. We see RVAS having the potential to grow in influence and revenue on an exponential level over the next year if we maintain a steady, but fluid approach to our marketing strategies.
Below is a projected outline of content, marketing and action items over the next year.
March 1 - April 31
2-month incubator period for unit 207 (Varhana Yoga Studio) unit S1 (Steeping Leaf Tea) and Unit 201 (Recording studio).
Launch Instagram, Facebook and Twitter campaign asking people to share their images of RVAS using the hashtag #RIVERVIEWSARTSPACE
Marketing photos of 3 newly functional units taken and being used to promote each business
Video vignette on Yoga Studio shot, edited and released
Video vignette of Steeping Leaf (resident artist) shot, edited and released
Riverviews Website refresh with updated photos, videos and copy (this might end up being a micro-site)
Photo/video content captured of all RVAS events/happenings (galleries, first friday events etc).
May 1- Oct1:
207, S1 and 201 are all generating enough rent to cover unit cost. This rate will continue for the next 10 months. A 2x model is suggested at the 1-year mark.
Candidates for 3 next largest vacant units have been identified (if already decided upon, 2 month incubator period begins upon initial move-in).
1 video created each month featuring an artist or business is being created. We will also have a Riverviews sizzler video featuring highlights from events, exhibitions etc completed and used on Vimeo and Youtube for Riverviews marketing.
All aesthetic changes mentioned above have been made to beautiful the physical presence of the building and better represent our fresh new identity.
An image library of thousands of images of RVAS ongoings has been captured. All are free for use by RVAS for various marketing strategies.
Daily engagement with all social media fronts.
Utility cost to RVAS reduced by 50%
Entire Riverviews Website overhaul
Oct 1. - March 1
Majority of units occupied by cost paying businesses
RVAS utility cost reduced by 75%
All video vignettes (12) completed and in use for RVAS marketing
Daily social network engagement
We would love for this relationship to continue, so at the year mark, we would love to evaluate our position with RVAS. If we have been progressing and hitting our marks, it would seem continuing the relationship is very mutually beneficial.
Compensation for work. On the very low end, my proposal of cash + free use of unit 4B would only amount to about $16,800 in compensation for the essentially full time work load this project will require. If there are more marketing dollars on hand, I will be able to bring in one or two other talented people to help with the workload (which would greatly expedite this entire process). If there are other monies or resources that can be shifted to augment this overall RVAS campaign, we would love to discuss that further.
Foster and Asher will do more than marketing RVAS and locating potential tenants; we will also help to find other community partners and potential donors for the nonprofit mission.
samples of our work
Below are some examples of images taken (both digital and film) inside the Riverviews Artspace. Our long-term objective is to create a narrative with our photos and films of RVAS that will attract new potential tenants and energize/celebrate the people who already make this space great.
Creating a strong online aesthetic is also our best shot at attracting talented individuals and lovers of art from Charlottesville, RIchmond and D.C. We want to eventually be a destination for people on the east coast. Creating photos that show the beauty of RVAS is how we aim to do that.
Example Video Content:
Our monthly release of a new video is another great way to share our story with the outside world. Below are some other short films we have made with people in the Lynchburg community. Creating an online presence punctuated with powerful stories of our RVAS family is essential.