In order to better support its members, the Kawartha Lakes Arts Council has developed a strategic digital plan to include a refresh of brand, and the creation of a new website with a digital sales and marketing platform for members, offering a year-round marketplace of arts and cultural products and services.
As a result of COVID-19, the Board of Kawartha Lakes Arts Council was forced to cancel the fourth annual two-day Made in Kawartha Lakes Art Show & Sale (MIKL) typically held in November. The annual show was missed by many who benefited from the exposure, sales and collaboration.
As reflected by James Lukow of Your Dreams in Wood, “the show was missed for many reasons. I always look forward to checking in with fellow artisans and Arts & Heritage Trail members. Having attended for the last number of years I’ve noticed that people have specifically looked for me.”
The new website and sales platform supported by a social media plan will have significant reach within Kawartha Lakes and adjacent communities. Members currently not selling online will have the opportunity to set up a presence to promote and sell their art securely year-round, with bonus of support and online sales training. For those already online, this new platform will expand their reach and grow their sales and audience.
This new vision required strategy, funding and partners. Gratefully appreciated financial support was secured from community partners who have stepped up to invest in the Kawartha Lakes arts and culture sector and the recovery of our community from COVID-19. These community partners include LLF Lawyers LLP, DLF Pickseed, Economic Development of City of Kawartha Lakes and Barton Creative Co.
“Since 2017, LLF has been a Community Partner of KLAC,” says Bill Lockington, a long-time supporter of arts and culture in the region. “Artists have been particularly hard hit during the pandemic. This initiative will help promote artists and sustain their creative work – something our community needs now and into the future. Our firm is pleased to join other partners in support of this strategic digital plan.”
The Kawartha Lakes Arts Council also notes that this project would have been realized without the Digital Innovation and Technology Improvements funding stream of the Rural Innovation Initiative delivered through Kawartha Lakes Community Futures Development Corporation and supported by the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.