September 2021
September 16th 2021, San Francisco

Agenda

Opening Items

  • Review Agenda & Vote [Secretary]
  • Vote to approve previous minutes [Secretary]

Discussion Topics

  1. 1.
    Committee Updates
  2. 2.
    Review Action Items
  3. 3.
    Scavenger hunt review
  4. 4.
    Preliminary budget review
  5. 5.
    App update
  6. 6.
    End of Year Fundraiser

Closing Items

  • Open for public comment [Secretary]
  • Any other business? [Secretary]

Minutes

Scribe: Ben Ward
Present:
  • Erika Delgado, Events Director
  • Amanda Guest, Chair, Executive Director
  • Caryn Kesler, Vice Chair, Creative Director
  • Jenn Lemon, Treasurer
  • Clair McDevitt, Chair of Fundraising Committee
  • Brandon Paski, Chair of Marketing Committee
  • Ben Ward, Secretary, Technical Director

18:11 — Convene, Vote on Agenda & Previous Minutes

Vote YES to approve the August minutes.
Vote YES to adopt the proposed agenda.

18:06 — Committee Updates

Events

Some agenda items that follow cover events so we can cover this later in the meeting.

Marketing

No major updates. Some delays getting prizes for scavenger hunt, but should be able to start distributing next week.
Tweaking sponsorship of Last Saturday Live, and still working on Mission Bowling Club.
Talking to Bottom of the Hill next week regarding a partnership.

Fundraising

Aiming to compile two more grant applications before the end of the year.
We have received 4 awards! We’ve been brought in over $30,000 in grants so far this year. One more pending, but the amount isn’t verified yet; up to $10,000. That was applied for in February, to give some context of how long these processes takes.
Lots of this years grants have been connected to COVID-relief, so don’t necessarily guarantee the same results next year. On the other hand, lots of regular grants dried up because of COVID, so we expect there will be opportunities, but they’ll be different.

Tech

We were supposed to start the committee meeting informally but that didn’t happen this month due to a technical error. Will try to get that set up correctly for the future.
Other focus has been on native App vendors, to be discussed later.

Board Development

No updates this month.

Music

No updates this month.

Finance

Covered

18:14 — Action Items

Caryn: Schedule an in person board get together for mid-September.

Carry over.

Ben and Amanda: will meet with some Developers over the next weeks, and provide an update with more budget specifics next month.

Will be covered later in the meeting.

Amanda: Prepare updates to strategic plan.

Carry over.

18:14 — Scavenger Hunt Review

We brought in $7500 through sponsorships and donations during the event. Running costs were $8500, although some of that is pending.
The attention we got and PR push we got was definitely worth $1000, though! We had a wave of media coverage, TV appearances, etc. in the last week.
60 teams registered, 54 were active and played every day.
Participants gave us feedback that they had a fun time. Got a lot of feedback from the winning team that is valuable.
We are planning to go again next year. Some sponsors who didn’t sponsor this year have already reached out for next year. LIkely will not be over Labor Day weekend next time so as not to clash with other events; later in September for 2 days. Thinking already that perhaps the hunt to culminate in an event/concert at a venue tied to birthday celebrations.
Next year: More emphasis on creative challenges: These were the most fun and created content for the station. Might look to partner with groups to provide some categories of question (e.g. themed trivia questions). Also, we want to start this earlier in the year so it’s set up well in advance.
Caryn: Are GooseChase [the app platform] receptive to feedback?
We have given some feedback — and we noted some things like having to sell tickets on a different platform from how the game is operated — but not all of those things are relevant to their core audience. We’ll need to think more about how to make that registration flow better next year.
Working relationship with Julie (PR) was really good, and we hope to keep working with her on future projects.
Clair: Specifically, Julie got us 27 media hits and 2 television placements in a very busy period. She understood the ethos of our station and the event, and introduced us to people we wouldn’t have otherwise been able to reach. Also linked us to potential sponsors for next year.

18:29 — Preliminary budget review

Jen and Amanada met to put together a preliminary budget, as the terms of our $16150 in funding from California Arts Council required it. Jen will share a PDF with the board after the meeting summarizing the budget. Main highlights and discussion items:
  • Comparing to last year we are bringing in more. But, annual comparison isn’t so easy to follow so we’ll likely do quarterly refreshes of the budget in future.
  • If we have some extra money in 2022, especially if we get a $50k federal grant:
    • Do we want to increase Amanda’s salary, or split the General Manager/Executive Director role and hire in more support for day-to-day running of the station?
    • Do we want to hire a social media role to handle newsletter and social?
    • Or we could invest money in fundraising-specific roles.
Jen: We have to think about how to grow the organization beyond the single “General Manager” role that includes a lot of clerical work. Find ways to use contractors to scale this work.
Caryn: Are you [Amanda] concerned about not wanting to be the sole person?
Amanda: Conscious that our current set up is unlikely to survive the “what if I was hit by a bus” scenario, that we wouldn’t be able to fill Amanda’s role at the low salary we’re currently paying.
Jen: A staff is required for this organization to really become permanent.
Clair: What would a salary for a part-time GM look like?
Amanda: Unsure. Only have my current salary to go by and that isn’t very good. We could look at other stations.
Jen: We would want to spec the job.
Ben: Amanda, what is your sense of the highest impact of these roles?
Amanda: If I could hire one person tomorrow, it would be a development person. But, they are sought-after, and we can’t afford one. Therefore farming out other responsibilities could free up time to do that work.
Don’t want to be doing the role in this way for more than a few more years. Now is the time to think about how we make the organization more sustainable.
Jen: We don’t want an organization built around a single person. Next steps would be to list [Amanda’s] jobs that we think we’d like to break out, and draw up job specs.

Bestie Bash Grant

We received a grant specifically for the Bestie Bash, which effectively doubles the Besties budget. Thinking about how we could invest further in streaming. Discussions with George at The Complex who have a very COVID-safe streaming set up for live performances. Also experience remote live streaming events such as at The New Farm. An option for our extra windfall could be to hire George to live stream our events.
We can also consider paying the bands more. We could consider moving the Bestie Bash to The New Farm?
Erika: This would make booking bands easier, and also be good as it would make our events more accessible even outside of the pandemic scenario.
Erika: Who runs The New Farm? Are they aligned with our mission and values?
A: They’re a non-profit organization, we might look into more specifically who’s involved if we were to partner.
The New Farm is a project led by Andy Pollock, the former director of The Farm, a late 1970s-mid 1980s farm, garden, communal housing, arts and punk rock venue at Army St. and Bayshore Blvd. Today the original space is La Raza Park.
The New Farm is a project to reimagine The Farm as a community space with farm animals, native plants, permaculture, performing arts, visual arts, poetry, homestead crafts and creativity. The New Farm is a project of the nonprofit Green City Project, a nonprofit dedicated to linking individuals and groups with community-based ecological activities. It’s hard to tell who else is behind The New Farm Project, but it seems to be a collective of folks from the original Farm. Their public donor lists include small donations from people who were involved with the music/arts/other scenes of the original Farm.
Ben: Are there any other Besties uses of this money other than this idea? Or is this clearly the thing to do?
Amanda: It seems like this is the most aligned with what we do. And we’ve talked about streaming for years, even before COVID.
Clair: Is it right to be hiring someone vs. buying the equipment ourselves?
Amanda: Yes. Seems that the complexity and depth of gear that George has is substantial.
If we wanted to do a trial run with George, we could link up with Twin Shrieks radio who are doing a festival at the New Farm in October and have worked with George before. We could offer to be the presenting sponsor for the live stream and use that as a test event.

19:00 — Post-Birthday Bash

The birthday bash (w/ live bands) at Make Out Room was the busiest night at Make Out Room since they reopened, so we are now able to schedule similar scale events every first-Wednesday. Looking into opportunities to book bands there.

19:07 — Native App update

Ben presents a deck summarizing the vendor review of Public Media Apps and Futuri. You can review the deck presented here: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1d-0evzXRxtypkkA9cQM0o_0BlZW6-i5whkYdm1v-tO0/

Questions:

Jen: Can it drive donations?
Yes. The app template supports putting a “Donate” or “Support” button in the toolbar, which will link to our donation page. It doesn’t automatically provide support for Apple/Android Pay — that’s something that would need to be supported by our Fundraiser provider (Kindful.) They did actually announce that they were adding support for Apple Pay, but that may be limited to using them as payment provider rather than Stripe. Stripe also supports Apple Pay, so I’m not totally sure what the disconnect is there, and will follow up with Kindful to find out.
Clair: Can it promote events & event sponsorships?
Yes. Their framework has a set of functionality all considered as “underwriting support” that allows for pre-roll full screen promotions, plus ad units in the feed which can be used for arbitrary promotional content by us. The feeds also support embedding arbitrary web content that we could create.
Jen: This seems like between the exposure and analytics could improve revenue for us, so the $250/month is not a lot of money.
Board votes for large allocation of funds: YES (unanimous.)
Next steps are to engage with Public Media Apps with some follow-up technical and design minutiae questions; probably nothing we’ve flagged in design review so far are deal-breakers, but good to find out, and also a good test of interacting with them. Ben will aim to follow through on that next week.

End of Year Fundraiser

In 2019 we had a goal of $15,000 and raised $20K.
In 2020, we had a goal of $25K and raising $18K. Pandemic, and election fatigue. Was the first time we didn’t reach a goal, but still came within $2000 of our biggest raise ever.
This year, the goal will be $20,000. Feel good — we didn’t do a Spring fundraiser so this will be our first direct donation request of the year.
Format will be as before for previous years, reaching out for matching donations prior to the start of the fundraising for the matching fun. Reaching out to friends and family and encouraging people to donate.
Intersect with Giving Tuesday on November 30th. Previously we’ve hosted a gala alongside that. Our Make Out Room date is December 1st, so we could host it there. Some logistical questions re: food and so on. Or, could we do a gala in a parklet or park? Need to work this out before December.
Get to the Giving Tuesday kick-off date, announce the matching fund, kick off public fundraising for the month and drip campaigns to contact donors based on their past contributions.
We’ll share a more substantial plan next month. Please give consideration to how you can contribute.
May look to engage Julie for PR leading up to the fundraiser: Not necessarily to promote the fundraising itself, but PR hits that will drive fundraising attention to us at the same time.

19:50 — Public Comments

  • No public comments this month.

19:53 — Any other business?

  • No other business.

19:55 — Meeting adjourned.

The next meeting of the BFF.fm board is scheduled for 6pm on October 21st 2021. See https://board.bff.fm for more information.

Action Items

  • Amanda: Follow up with George from The Complex, Mike from Twin Peaks, and the Farm.
  • Amanda: Follow up with Julie for PR quotes.
  • Amanda: Write down job functions that could be contracted out..
  • Caryn: Meeting in Person.
  • Caryn: Design feedback for the app.
  • Ben: Investigate state of Kindful Apple Pay support.
  • Ben: Proceed with App engagement.
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