Events | Directory | Member Center | Podcasts | Features | Artist Gallery | Poetry Out Loud | Store
Thrive: Arts Conference 2012
Conference 2012

June 13, 2012
Princeton University | Friend Center

9:30 AM - 5:30 PM
get directions
Free parking is available in Lot 21. There is a shuttle that will take you to the Friend Center at the Computer/EQUAD stop on Olden Street. The Friend Center is on the corner of Olden and William streets.
There is also metered street parking and several pay lots in the area.

Join executive, marketing, and development staff of NJ-based, nonprofit arts organizations statewide for this day-long conference focused on working collaboratively on a unified strategy toward building a strong community of arts supporters.

Sold Out

Due to a death in the family, Ra Joy, our scheduled keynote speaker, will be unable to join us at the conference. Please join us in wishing condolences to Ra and his family. Nicholas Paleologos, Executive Director of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, will be delivering the keynote address. Thank you in advance for your understanding.


Nicholas Paleologos Keynote Speaker:
Nicholas Paleologos | New Jersey State Council on the Arts

Nicholas Paleologos has a distinguished career in public service, throughout which his primary focus has been the arts and education. He is also a two-time Tony Award-winning producer with extensive experience in theater and film. Nicholas is a cum laude graduate of Tufts University and holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Harvard University. In 2007, he was the recipient of an Honorary Doctorate from The Boston Conservatory.
read more

Registration includes continental breakfast, buffet lunch, wine and cheese networking reception, admission to the plenary session featuring the keynote address, and three of the breakout sessions below. Be prepared to select which breakout sessions you wish to attend during the registration process.
see a complete agenda and speaker list

Breakout Session #1

The World of Mobile Philanthropy
Presenter: Aaron Smith (Senior Research Specialist, Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project)

Technology is increasingly relevant to Americans' monetary contributions to the causes and organizations they support. This session will explore the latest research into how the mobile/social revolution is changing the way people learn about, interact with, and contribute to organizations and causes and how this new mode of engagement offers opportunities to arts groups for reaching new donors under new circumstances as messages spread virally through friend networks.


The Rise of Hyperlocal Media
Panel Moderator: Susan Wallner (Principal, PCK Media)
Panelists: Mike Shapiro (CEO and Publisher, The Alternative Press)*; Fred Tuccillo (Regional Editor, Central Jersey Patch)*; Debbie Galant (Founder/Writer, Baristanet) | * Updated panelists

The emergence of hyperlocal websites has led to the proliferation of a blend of "citizen journalists" and established journalists creating content for a news model that is a unique blend of corporate owned, legacy newspaper partners, and entrepreneurial sites. While these hyperlocal sites offer new and exciting opportunities for cultural groups to get their message out, public relations professionals are finding their tried and true methods don't always apply. This panel discussion will explore the differences and similarities of these new media outlets and how arts groups can work effectively with them to spread the word about what's happening in New Jersey's arts scene.


How Advocacy Helps Your Bottom Line
Presenter: April Williamson (Government Relations Manager, Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance)

Supporting advocacy efforts locally, statewide and nationally financially benefits your organization. This session will provide an overview of how organizational support, both in the form of grassroots and financial commitments, is vital to ensuring your organization's story can be effectively translated to stakeholders in a manner that protects your interests as well as those of the arts community as a whole.

Breakout Session #2

Strengthening Your Social Net
Presenters: Mary Trudel and Rory MacPherson (Principals, Trudel/MacPherson)

Many arts leaders are working hard to get the most out of the latest digital communications tools and social media. During this session we'll review the findings from the national "How Strong is Your Social Net?" research project and lead an interactive workshop designed to improve and integrate organizations' communications strategies and audience engagement plans. We'll also discuss strategies for development and deployment using a "practice framework" to connect a group's communications and social media efforts to ticket sales, developing fan networks, and building participation in live events.


Brand Evolution: From Mission to Marketing
Presenter: Bill Gullan (Sr. VP of Business & Brand Strategy, Finch Brands)

Viewing the world through your patrons' eyes is both critical and challenging. In this session we'll delve into the tools to help you sharpen your brand position -- including consumer insights and customer segmentation. We'll also discuss strategies for adopting a comprehensive approach to aligning your mission, brand positioning, programming, development, and marketing to ensure your "brand" adequately expresses the core values of your organization.


Connecting with Your Community: How to Reach New Audiences in Your Own Backyard
Presenter: Mitch Menchaca (Director of Local Arts Advancement, Americans for the Arts)


As our communities begin to look different due to the “new normal” of the economy, shifts in generations, and changing demographics, arts groups across the country are asking the question, “How do we adapt to these changes?” This session will explore ways organizations can engage with current audiences and build new ones from within their local community. We’ll discuss how to identify local groups who are uninvolved with your organization and develop relationships with community leaders and potential patrons. The focus will be on programming strategies, engaging your community, unpacking participation, and other outreach initiatives in an effort to create authentic connections with your organization.

Breakout Session #3

Funders Roundtable
Panel Moderator: Nina Stack (President, Council of New Jersey Grantmakers)
Panelists: Julie Ellen Prusinowski (Director of Program and Services, New Jersey State Council on the Arts); Laura Aden Packer (Arts Program Director, Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation); Sarah Keh (Program Officer, The Prudential Foundation)


Understanding a potential funder's point-of-view is a critical step in creating a successful grant proposal and fostering a strong partnership toward advancing a common goal. This panel discussion will give arts organizations the opportunity to gain greater insight into the grant making process of a number of public and private foundation funders, as well as better understand the objectives those funders wish to achieve through their various grant programs.


Going Mobile: Websites vs. Apps, and What's the Difference?
Presenter: Mark Patten (Principal, Delphic Sage)

When planning a mobile presence for your nonprofit arts organization, one of the first considerations will likely be to determine whether you want to create a mobile application for users to download (an app) or a mobile website... or maybe both. Mobile websites and apps can look very similar at first-glance, and determining which is best suited to your needs is not always easy. That decision will depend upon a number of factors including target audience, available budget, intended purpose, and required features. This session will discuss the differences between the two options and help guide your organization in the right direction.


Making Cultural Tourism Work for You
Presenter: Brian Tyrrell, Ph.D. (Assoc. Prof. of Hospitality & Tourism Management Studies, Richard Stockton College of NJ)

Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs) are cornerstones of New Jersey's tourism marketing initiatives and vital resources for driving cultural tourism in the Garden State. For visitors these groups are like a key to the city, providing an unbiased resource that can serve as a broker and encourage travelers to visit local cultural sites. In this session we'll review findings from the recent "2012 Tourism Promotion Survey" and examine insights into the travel behavior of Northeast US residents. We'll also discuss how your organization can more effectively partner with your DMO and other local businesses to better promote your destination as a tourism product.

Conference Sponsors: