Review Agenda & Vote [Ben]
Vote to approve previous minutes [Ben]
Prior to the meeting, please add items for discussion here:
Consideration for Board Treasurer: Jenn Lemon
Vote on whether to proceed with nomination and vote
Nomination for inclusion on board
If Jenn is voted onto board then secondary vote needed for role of Treasurer
Review January Action Items
Come up with a “tinytivity” idea, and when you’d be able to host it.
Review the annual report before this weekend so that it can be sent out next week.
Review 2021 Fundraising Plan
Open for public comment
Any other business?
Scribe: Ben Ward
Amanda Guest, Chair, Executive Director
Caryn Kesler, Creative Director
Tom Tierney, Vice Chair
Ben Ward, Secretary, Technical Director
Erika Delgado, Events Director
Amanda introduces Jenn as a prospective new board member and candidate to be the BFF.fm treasurer.
The following bio was shared with the board prior to the meeting:
Jenn Lemon is an experienced financial analyst, CPA, and a general ledger & financial reporting expert with over 9 years of experience in the business and tech industry. As a Senior Financial Analyst at SEPHORA’s San Francisco-based headquarters, she works on budgeting and projections for retail occupancy on a national level. Her professional interests are driven by finding cost and efficiency savings within multiple areas of the business. In addition to her work experience, she is a passionate supporter and advocate of the arts and entertainment industry. A Washington-native, she was heavily influenced by the independent music scene of the Pacific Northwest. Either through the live college acts in her hometown of Bellingham or the KEXP supported music scene of Seattle, music has played a vital role in her life. Her goal by joining the BFF.FM board is to leverage her unique talents to support San Francisco’s rich music culture through community radio.
Tom: What led you into Finance:
Jen: Stumbled into something I really enjoy! Really enjoy solving puzzles, building narratives from data.
Tom: Are you an artist outside your professional career?
Jen: I wouldn’t describe myself as an artist! But I like to leverage my skills in places like this.
Ben: Have you served on a board or similar in the past?
Jen: Yes and no. I was involved in ballet and there was a board for the studio, which I joined in an advisory role for marketing and such. That lasted around a year, although wasn’t in a financial capacity. I’ve given less-formal, ad-hoc financial advice to other friends doing arts in San Francisco.
Ben: What do you hope to get out of serving on the BFF.fm board.
Jen: I’d like to get more not-for-profit experience under my belt. I want to leverage my expertise for the arts in San Francisco, in a role at a scale more than just advice to friends. I would like to do more for the music scene in particular beyond going to shows.
Eddie: What was the last show you went to?
Jen: I’m trying to remember before the pandemic! I will have to get back to you it’s been so long. All the shows form 2019 and 2020 are blending together!
Caryn: What is it that BFF.fm needs help that the role of treasurer will fulfil?
Jen: Lots of things are propped up: Timeliness of reporting, etc. Things can become messy and then you have to do a big clean up. Inputs are often not very coherent. Pretty much everything in the BFF.fm treasury position is work I’ve done at Sephora at a much larger scale. I’m the kind of person who likes to get everything down to the penny, and an organization like BFF.fm can’t afford to write-off unreconciled budget items. The technicalities of the work to be done here is relatively simple, things need to be tidied up and reconciled, and we can get more timely information that can be used to make decisions.
Amanda: One thing I’ll add is that every time we run the budget we do it at the end of the year and something is $1000 off — or fundraisers land across fiscal years that turn into small inconsistencies that we would benefit from having a better grasp of to ensure we stay on budget. The state of things now is uncomplicated, but as we grow the more complicated it will be and we should get a handle on it.
Jen: I’ve worked at smaller organizations, it’s very important to be able to scale. Organizations that are not ready to scale have to do it retroactively and at a cost.
A conversation about the history of medicine and alcohol occurred. Eddie’s family owns an agave farm. Fernet was originally used to ease menstrual cramps.
Tom: What would be the first priority for you as treasurer?
Jen: Understanding where the money is coming from, which requires some clean-up, but understanding where the money is coming from and the organization’s priorities so I understand the questions that will be asked.
Amanda Guest nominates Jenn Lemon to join the board. Eddie seconds.
Amanda Guest nominates Jenn Lemon to become the treasurer of the board. Tom seconds.
Bestie's Bash last night. Streamed on Twitch, YouTube and Facebook. Amanda had some new information that it’s good to cross-broadcast on as many platforms as possible, so we did that this time.
Our general Facebook engagement isn’t great which isn’t good for us as we do use it for fundraisers. One strategy to raise that generally is to do a live stream at least once month.
Most of our marketing was to drive people to Twitch, and we did encourage people to converse on Twitch.
We had 155 people! At the peak we had ~90, an average of 77. By far the best one yet.
Next month is already booked. Eddie starting planning for April and May.
The new forms to encourage bands to submit themselves for events are effective.
We’ve started getting some submissions from bands outside the Bay Area: Are we open to them? Especially since there are no tours right now, we think so: Think of them as a “touring” band on the bill. Maybe one a month alongside a roster of Bay Area acts.
We’re trying to get more quotes comments and feedback about the events that we can use in fundraising and marketing.
No big updates.
Would like it if someone else could own running the video streaming. It’s not a huge job for me, but it’s a clean niche that someone else could do.
Amanda: Part of the new Get Involved page structure includes listing volunteering/committee opportunities, so we will try to more actively advertise that.
We’re one board member away from reaching capacity as-per our bylaws. Amanda continuing to look for one more person to join. Priority is to keep growing our volunteer involvement so we can meet people who can graduate into.
Two areas that would be important to have on the board: Development/fundraising, and marketing. We currently have a marketing committee that doesn’t have anyone chairing it. And while Amanda has a background in marketing, tends to do it by default. But long-term health of the organization would benefit from delegating that. That said, Development Director is the higher priority.
Caryn and Amanda met to discuss updates to the website and BFF.fm design in general. Drafted the “Get Involved” page design. Need to determine who will implement it, would like it done asap.
Would like to develop a visual system for our marketing and social media.
We’ve noted in the process of listing our Google ads that we keep getting flagged as not owning the trademark for BFF.fm. As such, we should prioritise registering BFF.fm and Best Frequencies. There’s a non-nominal cost to this of filing fee and legal rates, so we’re investigating what the best approach would be.
We have Lara Kesler volunteering to write marketing copy for us, and copy for new PSAs to be recorded on air.
Will be covered in a dedicated agenda item below.
No updates this month.
Tom: I’ve been shooting a series of videos for Pops, and I’m going to start integrating them into driving listening to the BFF Top 30 which Pops underwrites.
Responses were a little varied, and didn’t all fit the “tiny” part of the brief. Will extend this for another week after we share more fundraising context in this meeting. Fresh deadline: Monday 1st March.
Everyone got feedback in. Annual report was completed and sent out this week as a valentine to all our donors. Still needs to be shared with the DJs, aim for March 1st for that.
Amanda has put together a 2021 Fundraising plan and shares the draft with the board.
Proposing a set of main impact goals to focus our efforts:
Maintaining a full schedule (growing with 15 new DJs.)
Booking 44 bands (paying a minimum of $100 per show)
Increasing listenership (need to figure out a robust way to measure this.)
Within fundraising, donor retention is Amanda’s top priority. Want to grow retention by 5%, look to be less reactive to donations, more proactively engaged with established donors, make those engagements less fundraising-specific. Increase engagement with Besties.
The desired strategy to raise money throughout the year is represented by a full fundraising calendar.
A lot of non-profits have recurring financial needs, and it’s often it’s desirable to fundraise off the back of tangible uses of the money raised. However, BFF.fm’s financial needs are generally not in that category. The tinytivity around PPE did not succeed (raised $1), so we need to consider how to effectively tie BFF fundraisers to motivating factors. We think that stories of how BFF has impacted people could be an effective angle.
Examples of Tinitivies: Hosting a fundraiser cocktail hour and taking donations, soliciting donations on a birthday, a transactional activity like selling a T-shirt,
Besties vs. one-time donations: Last year we strategically shifted toward aiming for one-time donations rather than growing besties. We don’t want to de-emphasise Besties this year — we lost 15 in 2020, and aiming for bigger (5-figure) one-off donations has not panned out so far. Our strategy this year is “do both” and getting donations of any kind, but we want to always be opening the door to people for becoming besties, might want to have some fundraising events dedicated to Besties growth.
No public comments this month.
Amanda: Amanda is taking next week off.
Caryn: Will schedule time for Amanda’s review.
Tom: Needs to get Amanda a list of alcohol companies.
The next meeting of the BFF.fm board is scheduled for 6pm on March 18th 2021. See https://board.bff.fm for more information.
Tinitivity Brainstorming v2: Come up with a fundraising idea by March 1st.
Schedule time for Amanda’s review, complete review.